Photo by Pat Radigan
25-16, 19-25, 25-17, 25-14
Foecke – 14
Holman – 3.5
Maloney – 16
Story by Pat Radigan
Huskers rally to run away with final two sets
When Michigan State rallied back to take the second set, it appeared the Nebraska volleyball team would be in for another marathon match on the road.
Like they’ve done all year, though, NU found a rhythm as their opponents passing broke down, and the Huskers hardly looked back on the way to a four-set win over the Spartans.
Mikaela Foecke led the line again for Nebraska, and posted 14 kills on .394 kills and a service ace. That set the tone for NU to pick apart the Spartans with aggressive serving and timely swings. Michigan State held the Huskers to just .086 in the second set to even the match, but the Huskers returned the favor by putting the clamps on MSU’s offense to cruise to the win.
With the match tied at a set each, Nebraska fell behind early in the third. Then the Huskers took control from the line.
Sydney Townsend served NU back to even at 9-9 with a run that included an ace. Kelly Hunter got a kill to put the Huskers up 13-11, then took her turn at the line following a Mikaela Foecke kill two points later. Hunter ran off six straight, including one of her 3 aces in the match, and stretched the lead to 20-12 on the way to a 25-17 win in the set.
Nebraska’s ability to apply pressure kept Michigan State from being able to find any sort of offensive rhythm. The Huskers held MSU to .054 in that third set win, and although Michigan State had one fewer error in the fourth set, the Spartans managed just 9 kills for the second straight game.
The low kill count limited MSU to just .094 in the decisive set, while Nebraska put up 15 kills and hit .367 to smash the Spartans 25-14 to clinch.
Freshman Jazz Sweet showed off her versatility with a late run in the set, starting with a kill from the left side to put Nebraska ahead 18-10. After an MSU kill, Sweet answered from her usual right-side spot, and this time tipped in a kill with her right hand. Sweet made it back-to-back kills in traditional fashion, from the right side and left-handed, to make it 20-11.
Sweet finished with 11 kills, and had 4 digs after posting just 28 total digs total over the first 20 matches of the season.
Townsend finished what she started with another run from the line, this time a 4-0 surge, before an MSU service error ended it. Although she finished below her average with 6 digs, Townsend matched Hunter by chipping in 3 aces and was a key contributor to Nebraska’s ability to control the final two sets.
The win moves Nebraska to 10-1 in the Big Ten, with the Huskers headed to Michigan for a Sunday afternoon matchup with the Wolverines.