The IPFW men's volleyball team will host Ball State at 7 p.m. Thursday. As part of the match, the school will honor coach Arnie Ball on his recent induction into the American Volleyball Coaches Association Hall of Fame.
The Volleydons are 9-8 this season, including 2-3 against ranked teams with recent wins over No. 10 Penn State and No. 15 George Mason.
Ball State is 12-5 overall and, like IPFW, 3-5 in the Midwest Intercollegiate Volleyball Association standings. IPFW won the first match between the teams 3-1 at Ball State on Feb. 13 when the Cardinals were in the midst of a five-match losing streak.
Ball was inducted during ceremonies Dec. 13 in Louisville. He is in his 33rd season coaching at IPFW, the longest tenure of any active coach in the nation. He has guided IPFW to five conference championships and more than 500 career wins.
The Hall of Fame coach will be honored before the start of IPFW's match against its in-state rivalry. In addition, there will be a pre-match reception that Ball will speak at for about five minutes starting at 6:20 p.m.
IPFW enters this match after receiving votes for the first time this season in the nation coaches poll. The Mastodons received nine votes and finished three votes behind No. 15 USC for the final spot in the AVCA top 15 coaches poll.
The winner of this conference match between Ball State and IPFW will move into sole possession of fifth place and a half-match behind fourth-place Grand Canyon. The top four teams in the MIVA at the end of the regular season will get to host a match in the MIVA Tournament quarterfinals.