Up and down volleyball season highlighted by ‘sparks of brilliance’


Photos by Jimmy Lafakis

A season of twists and turns led the Butler Bulldogs to finish 12-19 (8-10 Big East) in their 2015-16 campaign. Head coach Sharon Clark was impressed with her young squad’s growth throughout the year.

“What I will remember are the sparks of brilliance that this team showed,” Clark said. “We (knew) that we could play volleyball at such a high level, and we did it several times.”

The team struggled mightily to begin the season, dropping seven of eight matches after winning its season opener.



The Bulldogs showed signs of life at the start of conference play, winning two of their first three matches, but proceeded to drop five straight.

Butler won four of five matches down the stretch, including three wins on the road, but was eliminated from postseason contention in early November.

Freshman Anna Logan and senior Mary Striedl proved to be bright spots, as both players earned postseason honors. Logan earned Second Team All-Big East Honors, while Striedl was selected to the All-Big East First Team.

Logan led the team is kills (366) and assists (55). She was the only player in the Big East to lead her team in both categories.

“This season, I definitely learned the importance of communication,” the Indianapolis native said. “Not only communicating on the court, but communication with other coaches and teammates.”

Striedl posted 339 kills, 237 digs, 70 blocks and 15 aces during her senior season.

“When I look back on the season, I will never forget the girls I played with,” she said. “We had such amazing team chemistry, and that is so rare. I felt so lucky to have been a part of such a strong and close team.

“My favorite part of playing on this team for my final year as a (Bulldog) was the fact that we had no idea what our full potential was,” Streidl said. “We were constantly improving all season long, and with so many young players, it was so fun to see people significantly making strides each and every day.”