Sept. 11, 2015
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IOWA CITY, Iowa — The University of Iowa volleyball team defeated Milwaukee in straight sets on Friday morning in Carver-Hawkeye Arena. The Hawkeyes improve to 4-3 on the season with the win, while the Panthers fall to 2-6.
“For our group to hit around .300 wasn’t bad,” said UI head coach Bond Shymansky. “We would like to be a little bit sharper. We had a pretty good balance from our left-side hitting group, and our blocking starting coming around there at the end.”
After trading scores early, the Hawkeyes used kills by senior Mikaela Gunderson (1) and sophomore Taylr McNeil (2) to establish a lead and momentum. The Hawkeyes never trailed from there, taking the first set, 25-23. Junior Lauren Brobst led the Hawkeyes with five kills in the set, while junior setter Loxley Keala dished out 12 assists.
The Hawkeyes got out to an early 10-5 lead in set two, before Milwaukee fought their way back to tie the set, 13-13. The Panthers led by as many as three before the Hawkeyes came back to tie the game at 18. Freshman Reagan Davey provided a late spark of the bench, recording three kills down the stretch to lead the Hawkeyes to a 25-23 set-two victory.
Milwaukee got out to a 14-10 lead in set three, before the Hawkeyes used an 11-1 run to ultimately win the set 25-19 and the match 3-0. Freshman Molly Kelly and sophomore Annika Olsen served up the rally, while Brobst (2), Gunderson (4) and Janota (2) each added kills.
Brobst and Gunderson led the Hawkeye offense with 11 kills apiece. Keala dished out a team-high 42 assists, Olsen collected a season-high 24 digs, and Gunderson paced the team with five blocks. Davey recorded career highs in kills (7) and digs (10).
“It’s an exciting start to the day for us,” said Shymansky. “Now I can’t wait to play Iowa State tonight in front of the home crowd.”
“It was just exciting to finally step on the court in Carver,” said Olsen, a sophomore transfer. “This is a great arena to play in, and I can’t wait to see it filled tonight against Iowa State.”
The Hawkeyes return to action tonight, hosting Iowa Corn Cy-Hawk Series foe Iowa State. First serve is set for 8 p.m. (CT). Fans are encouraged to wear black.