Iowa Falls to Illinois in Five Sets, 3-2

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IOWA CITY, Iowa — The University of Iowa volleyball team dropped a 3-2 decision to Illinois on Friday night at Carver-Hawkeye Arena.
Annika Olsen tied a career-high with 29 digs and tallied a personal-best 11 assists for her first double-double of the season. This is Olsen’s 20th match of the season with double digits in digs.
Sets 1 and 2 (23-25, 25-21) | The Hawkeyes fell in set one, 25-23, but bounced back with a 25-21 win in set two. Claire Sheehan broke open a 14-14 score with back-to-back kills, and Jess Janota recorded a kill to set up the set-winning point and help Iowa tie the match, 1-1, before intermission.
Sets 3 and 4 (19-25, 25-23) | Iowa fell, 25-19, in set three, but again rebounded in set four. Iowa trailed 23-22 after a back-and-forth set, but a Sheehan kill and Taylor Louis kill clinched the rally and drew the match even at 2-2.
Set 5 (14-16) | The fifth set featured 10 ties and five lead changes before Illinois put together back-to-back point points to secure the set win, 16-14, and win the match, 3-2.
“We had two match-point swings and we need hitters to put the ball away in that moment. That was a big victory waiting for us there. I know it’s going to sting for our players. We have to find a way to bounce back tomorrow night against Northwestern.”
“I thought Jess was really good tonight. She really was an inspiration for us. Kelsey O’Neill followed her along. Brie Orr was really good as an attacking setter and also great with distribution. We had a lot of digs — 73 digs. Our serving finally came alive toward the end, but you have to learn to finish in that moment.”

  • Iowa had season-high 71 kills and a season-best 68 assists.
  • Brie Orr tied a career-high with nine kills and recorded a .562 attack percentage.
  • Three Hawkeyes — Sheehan (16), Louis (18), and Janota (16) — recorded double digits in kills.

Iowa squares off with Northwestern on Saturday night at 7 p.m. (CT) in Carver-Hawkeye Arena. The match is Iowa’s annual Dig Pink match. Fans are encouraged to wear pink in support of breast cancer awareness.

  • Iowa: 14-8, 3-6 B1G
  • Illinois: 16-4, 7-2 B1G