Sept. 5, 2008
DENVER, Colo – – The University of Iowa volleyball team defeated Tennessee (25-18, 27-25, 22-25, 25-22) Friday in the Pioneer Classic on the campus of the University of Denver. The Hawkeyes improve to .500 on the season (2-2) while Tennessee falls to 3-1.
“We showed a lot of resolve tonight,” Head Coach Sharon Dingman said. “We were trailing 20-17 in the fourth set and came back to win. I thought Emily (Hiza) controlled the match tonight and played great. Our bench contributed and this was a great team win.”
Senior Catherine Smale led the Hawkeyes with a double-double, recording 21 kills (.300 attack percentage) and 13 digs. Sophomore Megan Schipper was close behind with 20 kills while senior Kiley Fister tallied 48 assists. Playing in her home state, senior Emily Hiza collected 17 digs while sophomore Katie Kennedy added five block assists.
Iowa never trailed in the set one en route to a 25-18 win. Schipper led the way with six kills while sophomore Aimee Huffman added three.
“We showed a lot of resolve tonight. We were trailing 20-17 in the fourth set and came back to win. I thought Emily (Hiza) controlled the match tonight and played great. Our bench contributed and this was a great team win.”
Iowa started the set strong, using three kills from Schipper and two kills along with a service ace from Huffman to take a 10-4 lead, forcing a Tennessee timeout. Later in the frame, the Hawkeyes used four-straight Lady Volunteer errors for a 15-7 lead. Tennessee responded with its own 6-2 spurt to make the score 17-13, but Iowa maintained its lead after the small run at 23-17. Iowa wrapped up the set with two more points off Tennessee errors to take a 1-0 lead in the match.
The Hawkeyes won a close, hard-fought second set by a 27-25 score. Smale shined for Iowa in the second set, recording nine kills and five digs with a .312 attack percentage.
Iowa built a 6-3 lead in the set before Tennessee used a 5-2 surge to tie the frame at eight. The set stayed within two points with ties at 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 21 and 22 before Iowa brought up its first set point at 24-22. Tennessee battled back to tie the set at 24, but a Smale kill gave Iowa its second set point at 25-24. The Lady Volunteers managed to tie the set once again at 25, but another Smale kill followed by a Tennessee error gave the Hawkeyes a 2-0 lead.
Tennessee came away with a 25-22 win in the third set to force a fourth stanza. Schipper recorded seven kills with a .417 attack percentage while Smale added five kills and hit at a .571 clip.
Set three stayed close to start, with five ties before a 10-3 run gave Tennessee at 14-10 lead, forcing a Hawkeye timeout. Iowa battled back after the break, scoring seven points in the next 11 rallies to bring the score within one at 18-17. That would be as close as Iowa would get, as the Lady Volunteers closed the set with seven points to make the match score 2-1.
Iowa wrapped up the match with a 25-22 win in the fourth set. Smale had six kills to lead Iowa in the frame.
Tennessee took an early 6-2 lead in the fourth set, but a 5-0 Hawkeye run gave Iowa a 7-6 lead. The Lady Volunteers then used their own 5-1 run to take an 11-8 advantage. Tennessee kept between a one and three point lead until a 4-1 Hawkeye surge tied the set at 20. Tennessee regained the lead at 21-20, but a Smale kill followed by a Hiza service ace gave Iowa a slim 22-21 lead. The Lady Volunteers tied the set once again at 22, but two Tennessee errors and a Smale kill gave Iowa its second win of the season.
“This was a huge win for us,” Smale said. “We played aggressive and our passing was really on tonight. We have a long day tomorrow, but we need to use the momentum from this match against Denver and Virginia.”
Iowa will conclude action at the Pioneer Classic Saturday when it faces host-school Denver at 1:30 p.m. and Virginia at 6 p.m.