COLOGNE, Germany — The University of Iowa volleyball team won 4-of-5 sets in its European Tour Debut against the German Sport University Cologne volleyball team on Wednesday evening.
After a full day of traveling and some sightseeing downtown, the Hawkeyes met German Sport University Cologne for five sets. The contest allowed the Hawkeyes to get familiar with the different playing style in a European setting.
“It was really fun to get out here and play,” said junior Ashley Mariani. “We were all tired, but once we got going, we all got in the flow of things. Their out-of-system sets are a lot higher than ours, so you have to really wait when you are going up for a block. The ball was also a little different, so we had to get used to that as well.”
The Hawkeyes set the tone early, getting out to an early 8-3 lead in the first set. Cologne fought back to pull within one, but the Hawkeyes held on to win it, 25-21.
Four aces over the final 10 points helped the Hawkeyes secure a, 25-17, set-two win. Freshman Reagan Davey (2), and juniors Ashley Mariani (1), and Loxley Keala (1) all registered aces down the stretch to give the Hawkeyes a 2-0 match advantage.
After dropping set three, 25-21, Iowa bounced back with a win in set four. The Hawkeyes used a 6-0 run to get out to a lead, before they held on to win it, 15-7. Mariani served up the rally, tallying three aces and a kill.
Iowa used a 4-0 run to secure a 15-10 win in the fifth and final set. Davey and Mariani added kills to the rally, before freshman Molly Kelly closed the match with an ace.
To stay up-to-date on Iowa’s European Tour action, follow the Hawkeyes on Twitter (@IowaVolleyball), Instagram (@iowavolleyball), and Facebook (/iowavolleyball). Fans can also follow the team’s European Tour Blog on hawkeyesports.com.