Nov. 11, 2015
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IOWA CITY, Iowa — The University of Iowa volleyball team fell to top-ranked Penn State in straight sets Wednesday night in Carver-Hawkeye Arena. The Hawkeyes fall to 12-16 on the season and 2-13 in Big Ten play, while the Nittany Lions improve to 24-2 overall and 13-2 in conference action.
“Any time that you’re in a tight set with Penn State, you really have to perform at your best,” said UI head coach Bond Shymansky. “We didn’t perform our best at the service line, and made too many errors down the stretch. We didn’t take care of the ball enough. They showed why they are the number one team. I thought their consistency was so much better than ours. That’s something we continue to work on as a group.”
After trading points to begin the first set, Penn State used a 6-1 run to take a 14-9 lead. The Nittany Lions extended their lead with a late 7-1 rally to cruise to a 25-16 set-one victory. Penn State recorded a .444 attack percentage and 18 kills in the set.
The Hawkeyes used a five-point run to take an early, 9-5, lead in set two. Senior Mikaela Gunderson recorded a kill, while sophomore Annika Olsen added an ace to the rally. After a Penn State timeout, the Nittany Lions fought back to take a 17-14 lead. The Hawkeyes responded, coming within one point of the Nittany Lions six times, but could not complete the comeback as Penn State claimed the set, 25-23. Iowa hit .387 in the set. Gunderson had the hot hand for the Hawkeyes, registering six kills on nine attempts with no errors (.667 hitting percentage).
Penn State grabbed an early lead on a six-point run in the third game and never looked back. The Nittany Lions registered six team blocks in the set to hold Iowa to a .059 attack percentage. A pair of late kills by freshman Reghan Coyle pulled the Hawkeyes within five (23-18) and forced a Penn State timeout. The Nittany Lions answered, however, recording a kill and an ace to win the set, 25-18.
Junior Lauren Brobst led the Iowa offense with 10 kills, junior Loxley Keala dished out a team-high 33 assists, while Olsen paced the defense with 13 digs. Coyle registered a career-high seven kills in the match.
“Now we’re going to see Wisconsin for the second time this season,” said Shymansky. “The adjustments we make the second time around are going to be significant for us. Our group is still fighting. There is a lot of great volleyball ahead of us.”
The Hawkeyes travel to Madison, Wisconsin, for a contest against the 11th-ranked Badgers on Nov. 14. First serve is set for 7 p.m. (CT).
|Iowa at #1 Penn State||1st||2nd||3rd|
|Iowa (12-16, 2-13)||16||23||28|
|#1 Penn State (24-2, 13-2)||25||25||25|
|Kills: Brobst (IOWA) 10 | Frantti (PSU) 11|
|Assists: Keala (IOWA) 33 | Weiskircher (PSU) 32|
|Digs: Olsen (IOWA) 13 | Courtney (PSU) 10|
|Blocks: 5 Tied (IOWA) 1 | Whitney/Washington (PSU) 4|