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Killing it: DWU's Frick leads nation in kills

Dakota Wesleyan University's Becky Frick (5) puts down a kill earlier this season against Waldorf at the Corn Palace. Frick currently leads the nation in kills. (Marcus Traxler / Republic)

Not many people expected Dakota Wesleyan University's Becky Frick to be leading the nation in kills.

Not even Frick.

"When I heard that, I was honestly pretty shocked," Frick said. "But it all comes back to teammates and coaches again. They all pushed me to be the best I can be in practice and in games. That's why I am where I am right now."

Including Tuesday night's 3-1 victory at Dakota State, the sophomore outside hitter has put down an NAIA-leading 249 kills through 15 matches. She's also surpassed her kill total from last season of 244.

"It is really rewarding," the Yankton graduate added. "It gives me a little extra confidence."

DWU coach Lindsay Wilber had confidence in Frick and dubbed her the team's "go-to player," entering the season.

"I knew from just the spring she put in and what I witnessed over the summer, that I knew she was going to be our go-to this fall," Wilber said. "It honestly hasn't surprised me. I knew she had gotten so much better from last year."

Through the first 15 matches, Frick has shined in her new role and plays all six rotations for the Tigers. Wilber said she's also been solid defensively, too. Frick has 237 digs and has 13 double-doubles this season.

"She is embracing it," Wilber said about Frick's new role. "She is a competitor. She knows that we rely on her and she is so smart with the ball. She can just put it anywhere and that is what makes her so good."

With Frick leading the way, Tigers have also been good this season. They are 11-4 entering tonight's conference home match at 7 p.m. against Briar Cliff (9-0) at the Corn Palace.

"Everyone has done a good job of playing their role on the court and doing what they need to do to help the team win," Frick said.

Frick credits her success and the team's success to work in the offseason.

"Everyone has gotten so much better," Frick said. "All of us have worked hard in the offseason and it's exciting to see a lot of the players right now aren't very old. So it is exciting to think about our future and how good we could be."

Now, the key for Frick will be to maintain her high level of play. The Tigers are about to jump into the grueling Great Plains Athletic Conference schedule. The GPAC currently has six teams ranked in the NAIA poll.

Wilber said it will be important for Frick to stay positive as teams will gear up toward stopping her.

"We are going to run into bigger blocks," Wilber said. "But she does a good job of not getting blocked that I think that she will just become smarter and we will become smarter as a team."