Sept. 4, 2009
- 24 Hawkeyes to Watch (2009-10 season)
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- 24 Hawkeyes to Watch
Green Bay, WI – The University of Iowa volleyball team improved to 4-0 for the first time since 1998 with a 3-1 win over South Dakota State Friday at the Country Inn and Suites Classic. After falling behind early, the Hawkeyes stepped up their defense to record a season-high 69 digs.
Iowa dropped the opening set 25-20. Hawkeye Sophomore Mallory Husz came off the bench to contribute four kills in five attacks, but the Jackrabbits attacked at a .323 clip to take a 1-0 match lead.
Iowa came out strong, putting pressure on the Jacks and forcing three errors to take the early 4-1 advantage, but SDSU was able to battle back and take a quick 5-4 lead. The teams battled to a 12-12 tie before the Jacks scored the next two points to take a lead they wouldn’t relinquish. Senior Megan Schipper recorded her first kill to fight off a set-point and pull Iowa within four points, 20-24, but SDSU followed with a kill to end the first set, 25-20.
The Hawkeyes bounced back in the second set to even the match, 1-1. Junior Aimee Huffman led the Hawkeyes with six kills and junior Mara Hilgenberg contributed with 12 assists. Senior Christina Meister and junior Samantha Brannigan added six digs apiece.
Iowa jumped to an early 2-0 advantage with a block by Kennedy and eventually stretched the lead to 11-7 on a Husz kill. SDSU battled back to within one, 19-18, but the Hawkeyes used two aces from Brannigan and a wave of kills from Huffman, Husz and Schipper to finish the set with the 25-18 victory.
The Hawkeyes used five kills from Kennedy and 14 Hilgenberg assists to take a 2-1 match advantage in the third set. Schipper and Meister added six and seven digs, respectively, to lead the defensive effort.
Iowa entered the third set firing from the hip. Kennedy set the tone with a kill before Huffman, Schipper and a string of SDSU errors gave the Hawkeyes a 7-2 lead. The Jacks battled back to trail Iowa 12-8, but the Hawkeyes used kills from freshman Emma Krieger Kittle, Schipper and Kennedy to take a commanding 18-9 edge. Krieger Kittle and Schipper added another kill each down the stretch as Iowa held on for the 25-15 win.
Iowa’s momentum continued into the fourth set as the Hawkeyes stormed out to a 16-8 lead. Huffman, Schipper, Kennedy and Husz attacked the net with success in the early going, but SDSU battled back to score eight of the next 10 points and tie the set, 18-18. Iowa then rallied the troops and controlled the net, recording five kills and a block to end the set, 25-22, and capture the match victory, 3-1.
The Hawkeyes return to action tomorrow morning when they face Central Michigan at 11 a.m.