Hawkeyes Open 2012 in Style, Sweep Chicago State

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Aug. 24, 2012

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IOWA CITY, Iowa — The University of Iowa volleyball team opened the 2012 season in style, registering a 3-0 sweep (25-19, 25-10, 25-13) against Chicago State (0-1) Friday in the first game of the Hawkeye Challenge presented by Comfort Suites. The match was held on Mediacom Court inside Carver-Hawkeye Arena.

The Hawkeyes, who move to 5-0 in season openers under head coach Sharon Dingman, were led by a number of standouts. Junior Chante’ Thompson recorded a career-high and match-high 11 kills. Sophomore Alex Lovell, who led the team in kills in 2011 and became Iowa’s first freshman since 2005 to record more than 300 kills in a season (312), tallied eight kills. Freshman Erin Radke also notched eight kills in her college debut.

Junior Nikki Dailey registered a match-best 24 assists and freshman Anne Yanda added 12. In addition, junior Bethany Yeager notched a match-high 21 digs. Yeager surpassed 1,000 career digs (1,010) in the opener, becoming the 14th Hawkeye to accomplish the feat.

“It always feels good to start the season with a win,” said Dingman. “It was a good match for our freshmen to see what this is going to be like. They were pretty nervous, and it showed the way we played. The upperclassmen stayed steady. Overall, everybody played well.”

The Black and Gold claimed the opening set of the season, 25-19. The two teams went back-and-forth to open the set. Iowa led 10-8 before a 6-2 Hawkeye run pushed the advantage to 16-10. Chicago State went on an 8-2 run following a timeout to close the gap to one at 18-17, but Iowa closed the frame with an 8-2 run to win the opening set. Dailey and Yanda led Iowa with six assists and Lovell tallied four kills. Yeager added six digs.

The Hawkeyes opened the second set with a 7-1 advantage and never looked back, claiming a 2-0 match lead with a 25-10 victory. Radke recorded five kills and Dailey notched 10 assists. Yeager led the way with eight digs.

Iowa jumped out to a 5-0 led in the third set en route to a 25-13 win. Three Hawkeyes (Rachael Bedell, Lovell, Thompson) led the way with three kills each while Dailey recorded eight assists. Yeager turned in seven digs.

Four newcomers — sophomores Alessandra Dietz and Katie Kelley, and freshmen Yanda and Radke — saw action for the Hawkeyes.

Iowa (1-0) continues action in the Hawkeye Challenge tonight at 7 p.m. against South Dakota State. All matches in the Hawkeye Challenge will be played on Mediacom Court inside Carver-Hawkeye Arena. Admission is $5 for adults and free for youth 18 and younger, and UI students with a valid ID.

Chicago State at Iowa 1st 2nd 3rd
Chicago State (0-1) 19 10 13
Iowa (1-0) 25 25 25

Statistical Leaders
Kills: Chante’ Thompson (UI) 11 | Van Munster (CSU) 6
Assists: Nikki Dailey (UI) 24 | Sioto (CSU) 13
Digs: Bethany Yeager (UI) 21 | Townsell (CSU) 14