Hawkeyes Fall to No.7 Illinois, 3-0

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CHAMPAIGN, Illinois — The University of Iowa volleyball team (9-5, 1-2) fell to No. 7 Illinois (14-0, 3-0) in three sets inside Huff Hall on Friday night.

“Illinois showed us, partly, why they are the number one RPI team in the country and are undefeated right now. I thought we executed well in the first set, going point-for-point with them. They separated at the end of the first. Kudos to our team in the third set for coming back in the third set. We started to get some positive hitting numbers, but we did not do well on our blocking defense to slow them down. The challenge in volleyball is getting momentum and we never got momentum.”

SET 1 (20-25) Freshman Amiya Jones opened up the first  set with a quick kill as the Hawkeyes and Illini went back and forth until a kill by junior Cali Hoye gave Iowa a 7-5 lead. A long rally followed by a tip kill by senior Reghan Coyle was drowned out by back-to-back kills by Illinois to take its first lead of the night. The Hawkeyes fell behind by as many as four points before climbing back into the match at 20-22, but after an Illinois timeout, the Illini closed the first set.
SET 2 (16-25) Iowa fell into an early deficit at 4-1 before capitalizing on Illinois errors to bring it to 4-6. Later in the set, three errors put the Hawkeyes in a deeper hole at 8-13 and Iowa struggled to regain momentum. A kill and block in back-to-back plays by Hoye gave the Hawkeyes a small window, but Illinois’ lead kept growing and the Illini took the second set.
SET 3 (20-25) The Hawkeyes ended on a positive note in the third set. After falling behind 11-16, Iowa bounced back with kills from Louis and Hoye to bring the match within two points at 16-18. Jones and Coyle also added a kill each at the end of the set to make it 19-20, but despite Iowa’s spurts couldn’t catch up to Illinois and the Illini took the third set.

·       Iowa committed one service error to Illinois’ 12

The Hawkeyes have a quick turnaround with a match against Northwestern on Sunday at 1 p.m. (CT) inside Evanston Township High School. Live results and audio of Sunday’s match are available on the team’s schedule page at hawkeyesports.com.