Hawkeyes Fall in Straight Sets at Michigan State

Oct. 30, 2009

box score

EAST LANSING, MI – The University of Iowa volleyball team dropped a three-set match to Michigan State tonight at the Jenison Field House. Freshman Emma Krieger Kittle led the Hawkeye offense with 11 kills, one shy of her career high. Junior Mara Hilgenberg dished 29 assists and seniors Christina Meister and Megan Schipper picked up six digs apiece.

“We had trouble serving tonight,” said Head Coach Sharon Dingman. “We lost 13 points at the service line and we need to limit those errors. It’s been a struggle all season and we need to address it immediately for our match tomorrow night.”

The opening set saw seven ties and three lead changes before Michigan State prevailed with a 25-22 win. Krieger Kittle led the Hawkeye attack with four kills. Schipper added three kills and a team-high four digs and Hilgenberg dished 10 assists.

The Spartans jumped to an early 7-3 lead in the opener before two kills from Krieger Kittle sparked a 5-1 run to tie the set, 8-8. Michigan State battle back to retake a three point advantage, 14-11, before a pair of kills from Schipper and a block from junior Becky Walters eventually tied the set, 18-18. After MSU regained the lead, 20-21, the Hawkeyes answered a Dingman timeout with a 4-1 run to take a 22-21 lead. The Spartans then ran off four straight points to win the set and take a 1-0 match advantage.

Michigan State (3-8, 15-8) took a two-game lead with a 25-17 win in the second set. Krieger Kittle led Iowa with four kills while Hilgenberg dished nine assists and picked up a pair of digs.

The Spartans rode their first-set momentum into the second frame, building a 12-9 lead before kills from junior Katie Kennedy, Walters and Schipper pulled Iowa within one point, 13-12. After MSU extended their lead, 21-14, Krieger Kittle answered a Dingman timeout with consecutive points, a block and a kill, before the Spartans finished with a 4-1 run to win the set and take a 2-0 match lead.

Iowa dropped the third and final set, 25-20. Sophomore Mallory Husz came off the bench to pick up three kills, three blocks and two digs in limited action. Hilgenberg added 10 assists and junior Samantha Brannigan picked up a team-high three digs.

The Hawkeyes (3-8, 11-12) used kills from Walters and Krieger Kittle to take an early 4-2 lead in the third frame, but Michigan Stage continued its roll and battled back to take the lead, 14-10. With help from a Krieger Kittle kill and two blocks from sophomore Mallory Husz, Iowa battled back to take an 18-16 advantage. A pair of kills from Walters eventually gave Iowa a narrow one-point edge, 20-19, but the Spartans scored the final six points to pull out the three-set victory.

The Hawkeyes continue conference play tomorrow at Michigan. The Wolverines host the Hawkeyes at 6 p.m. at Cliff Keen Arena. Voice of Iowa volleyball Mike Haberle will call the action live on KXIC (AM 800).