MVB: Tri-match in-brief AND Wilkes switches from MAC to LHAC starting in 2023- 2024 athletic year

WILKES–BARRE, Pa. — The volleyball team split their games against Messiah and Wells on Saturday, Feb. 12.

In their conference game against Messiah University, the Colonels dropped all three sets.

Wilkes kept it close in the first set as the score was 17-15, but an 8-3 run by the Falcons would be the downfall of the Colonels in the first set.

Messiah went on to close the other two sets in a similar fashion. Sophomores Paul Binner and Noah Taylor paced the Colonels with five and four kills, respectfully.

In the second game of the day, Wilkes dominated on the court. Wells College was unable to get enough momentum to lead the Colonels throughout their sets.

Wilkes jumped out to early leads in all of their sets. Wells made several attempts to win a set, but they were unsuccessful due to the surplus of kills out of Taylor and senior Ethan Speicher.

Taylor recorded 11 kills in the matchup while Speicher recorded a season-high of 10.

The Colonels return to action tonight as they travel across the ‘Barre to take on the Monarchs at 7 p.m.

The Beacon: Ariel Reed


The university recently announced its athletics department will move from the Middle Atlantic Conference (MAC) to the Landmark Conference. The school is set to move up in the 2023-2024 athletic

Wilkes is not the newest college to join the Landmark Conference. Lycoming College, located in Williamsport, is set to move up in the conference as well. As a result of the change, Wilkes and Lycoming will be moved away from King’s and Misericordia, local rivals. Instead, they are now members alongside the University of Scranton; the Catholic University of America, Washington D.C.; Drew University, Madison, N.J.; Elizabethtown College, Elizabethtown, Pa.; Goucher College, Baltimore, Md.; Juniata College, Huntingdon, Pa.; Moravian College, Bethlehem, Pa.; and Susquehanna University, Selinsgrove, Pa.

“We ultimately feel that it places Wilkes in the company of institutions that are similar in size, scope and philosophy and that offer research-intensive programs from bachelor’s through doctoral levels,” said President Greg Cant.

Of the 23 NCAA Division III programs, Wilkes athletes will be able to compete in Landmark-sponsored sports. they are baseball, men’s and women’s basketball, men’s and women’s cross country, field hockey, football, men’s and women’s golf, men’s and women’s lacrosse, men’s and women’s soccer, softball, men’s and women’s swimming, and men’s and women’s tennis and women’s volleyball.

“We are excited for the challenge of playing the best competition in the country,” said head football coach Jonathan Drach. “We will continue to focus on the process of continual improvement and the outcomes will take care of themselves. We have been building to this since I arrived in 2018 and we are ready to face any challenge that is put in front of us on the field as a team and as an athletic department.”

Although these sports are moving up in the conference, others currently remain out. Men’s and women’s ice hockey teams will continue to play in the United Collegiate Hockey Conference; wrestling will continue participating in regional competitions and post-season tournaments in the attempt to qualify for natural championships. Men’s volleyball, an unsponsored sport in the Landmark Conference, will remain unaffiliated for the time being.

“It is a great opportunity for us to play different teams,” said first-year women’s basketball player Emma Stout. “While it is sad to leave, especially not playing King’s as a conference game, I am personally
excited to have two seasons from both conferences. It may be a struggle in the process of moving, I believe that every team will take on the challenge and strive.”

As Stout mentioned, the transfer of conferences does bring up the potential for lost rivalry between the MAC schools that are less than 10 miles away from each other (King’s and Misericordia).

Drach discussed that the rivalries between the schools will still continue on despite the conference change. He mentioned that the King’s game in the past season and the upcoming season for football was conducted as an out-of-conference game and he could not “see a lack of intensity on the eld from either team.”

The LHAC is known for being not only an athletically competitive conference, but also an academically competitive conference.
“We look forward to this new opportunity with incredible gratitude to the MAC and its member institutions and with the goal of continuing regional non-conference competition and collaboration,” said Cant.