Following this weekend’s matches, Drake returns to the road for a pair of matches against Bradley and Illinois State Oct. 27 and Oct. 28. Print Friendly Version The Bulldogs’ hitters recorded career highs earlier this season on the road against those two opponents as Cathryn Cheek (Coppell, Texas) had 21 kills at Loyola while Kyla Inderski (Urbandale, Iowa) had a career-high 24 digs in just three sets at Valparaiso. The Bulldogs take on Valparaiso Friday before facing Loyola Saturday. Both matches are scheduled to begin at 7 p.m. and will be broadcast on The Valley on ESPN3. Match Notes Story Links Live Stats ESPN3 – Valpo Despite the two losses, the Bulldogs have won 11 of their last 13 matches and are 11-4 in their last 15 MVC matches dating back to last season. Drake’s defense has asserted themselves as one of the strongest in the country, leading the NCAA in total digs (1,638) and ranking fifth in digs per set (18.61). Additionally, MVC opponents are hitting just .167 against Drake’s defense that also has the most blocks in the MVC in conference games. The Drake University volleyball team returns to the Knapp Center this weekend sitting in third place in the Missouri Valley Conference standings and aiming to bolster that position with a pair of games against Valparaiso and Loyola. ESPN3 – Loyola Drake (18-5, 7-2 MVC) reaches the midpoint in the MVC season sitting in third place. The Bulldogs are coming off two losses to the Valley’s top two teams, Missouri State and UNI. Drake forced Missouri State to five sets last weekend before falling to No. 25 UNI earlier this week, 3-0. Buy Tickets Drake defeated both Valparaiso and Loyola earlier this season 3-0 and 3-1, respectively. The Bulldogs will be tested defensively against Valparaiso (11-10, 3-5 MVC) who leads the country in digs per set (20.36) while leading the Valley in blocks per set (2.28). Loyola (1-18, 0-8) will come to the Knapp Center looking for their first conference victory after taking its last three matches to five sets.