Iowa drops match to Northern Iowa in four games

Oct. 6, 2004

Final Stats

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The Iowa volleyball team played Northern Iowa tonight after two tough weekend losses in Big Ten action and the Panthers were also trying to rebound after a loss in the Missouri Valley Conference. Both teams were looking to get back on the winning track, and the first few points indicated that both teams were willing to work for it as bodies were flying as players dove to keep the ball in play. At the end of the night, Northern Iowa was the team with smiles on their faces after battling to a 3-1 win over Iowa (30-21, 23-30, 30-27, 30-26).

Iowa won two long rallies to go up 2-0 in game one after both teams were all over the court in an effort to win the points. Iowa continued to lead after a kill by Stacy Vitali on the outside gave Iowa a 13-12 advantage. Northern Iowa later took a 19-18 lead after the Hawkeyes struggled to handle serves by two different Panther players. Iowa kept the game close at 22-20, but Northern Iowa rolled to a 30-21 victory after that.

Unforced errors hurt the Iowa effort in game one. Iowa handed Northern Iowa three points early on service errors and had two serve receive errors, as well. The Hawks managed 12 kills in game one, but had eight hitting errors for a.093 hitting percentage. The Panthers had 16 kills and only seven errors for a .243 attack percentage. Vitali was the kill leader for Iowa with four. Panther Rachael Tink had seven kills.

Northern Iowa coach Bobbi Petersen called a timeout in game two after Laura Simpson and Giese teamed up for a block to put the Hawks up 7-2.Later, Iowa went up 13-9 on three attacking errors by Northern Iowa and Iowa started to gain momentum. Vitali blocked outside hitter Trista Humpal to put the Hawks ahead 21-17. Tiana Costanzo picked up an ace to give Iowa a 24-17 lead and Justeen Patton caught the Panthers off-guard with a tip to make the score 27-19. A pancake dig by Pam Kavadas kept the next rally alive and a hitting error by the Panthers made the score 29-21 in favor of the Hawks. Vitali earned Iowa the 30-23 victory with her seventh kill of the night.

In game two, it was the Hawkeyes with the better hitting percentage of .250 compared to just .059 by the Panthers. Giese, Simpson and Vitali each tallied three kills for Iowa.

Lauren Bruckner served an ace for the Hawkeyes in the third game to cut the Panther’s lead to 5-4. Giese and Vitali teamed up for a block to extend the lead to 11-8. Later after the Panthers went up 18-16 on consecutive kills, but a slide kill by Giese and an ace by Costanzo tied the game at 19. Patton found Vitali for a kill to slow the Panther momentum after they jumped out to a 22-19 lead. Northern Iowa took a 26-22 lead after slamming down an errant serve receive, and Coach Cindy Fredrick called a time-out to regroup. A costly serving error put the Hawks down 27-25, and Northern Iowa followed with a kill and a block to go up 29-25. Iowa stayed in the game on a Panther hitting error and Giese earned a kill to make the score 29-27. A kill by senior Shari Vermeer followed to give UNI the win, 30-27.

Giese led Iowa with six kills and Vitali followed with five kills in the third game for Iowa. As a team, Iowa hit just .119 compared to Northern Iowa’s .222 attacking percentage. Both squads struggled behind the line with the Hawks committing three errors to the Panther’s four. Shari Vermeer tallied eight kills for Northern Iowa.

In the fourth game, Iowa trailed 9-6 when Patton slipped two tips past the Panther front line. Iowa trailed 13-10, when Giese earned two kills to pull Iowa within one point. The Hawkeyes went up 17-15 on a hitting error by Laura Rowen, but Rachael Tink followed with an off-speed kill for Northern Iowa. The Hawkeyes had a 22-19 advantage on a kill by Simpson, but the Panthers came back with three consecutive kills to go up, 23-22. Two kills by Vitali cut the Panther’s lead to 27-26, but a kill by Danielle Brazda put the ball back on the Panther’s side. Bowen slammed a kill to make it 29-26 and the Panthers won the match, 30-26, on a double block by Bowen and Brazda.

Carlolyn Giese led Iowa with 18 kills, Stacy Vitali had 15 and Laura Simpson contributed 11. Simpson hit at a .647 clip during the night. Patton tallied 40 assists in the match. Giese had 4.5 total blocks in the game and the Hawkeyes had ten as a team.

Four Panther’s had double-digit kills. Rachel Tink had 21, Shari Vermeer had 19, Danielle Brazda had 11, and Laura Rowen chipped in 11 kills. Erin Hirsch had 62 assists for Northern Iowa.

“We didn’t take care of the ball as much as we needed to tonight,” said Coach Cindy Fredrick. “If we pass well, and set well, and serve well, then we play well, but when we don’t do those things we struggle. Tonight we had problems serving, especially at key times, so we just need to cut down on those errors.”

Iowa will host Northwestern and Wisconsin in Big Ten action this weekend. Both matches will be held in Carver-Hawkeye Arena and will start at 7 p.m.

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