Spartans Sweep Iowa, Set Up Nebraska Showdown
Oct. 11, 2013
East Lansing, Mich. - - Michigan State extended its winning streak to 14 matches with a 3-0 victory over Iowa on Friday night at Jenison Field House. MSU, ranked seventh in this week's national poll, extended its winning streak to eight straight against the Hawkeyes, while improving to 16-1 overall and a conference-best 5-0 in Big Ten play. Iowa falls to 9-8 overall and 0-5 in the Big Ten.
MSU's victory, coupled with Nebraska's five-set victory over Michigan tonight, sets up a Saturday showdown between the seventh-ranked Spartans and the No. 9 Huskers, a top-ten matchup featuring the league's lone unbeaten teams in conference play.
MSU was led by Lauren Wicinski, who hit .579 (12-1-19), had a pair of service aces, four digs, and three blocks. Freshmen Allyssah Fitterer and Chloe Reinig each had seven kills and two blocks; Alexis Mathews contributed five kills and four blocks while hitting .444.
MSU limited the Hawkeyes to hitting just .162 in the match, hitting .493 as a team. MSU had a 78% sideout percentage in the match, while out-blocking Iowa 7-2. MSU recorded 20 digs as a team, while limiting Iowa - the top team in the Big Ten in digs per set - to 19 in the match.
In the opening set, MSU used a 7-0 run to open up a 12-4 advantage, and cruised to a 25-14 victory. The Spartans hit .478 in the set, led by Wicinski's six kills on eight attempts to go with an ace and a block. Kuipers, Reinig, and Mathews each had two kills, and Kelsey Kuipers also contributed a pair of block assists.
The second set was more domination for MSU, and despite a lack of lengthy scoring runs, posted a 25-13 win. MSU went a perfect 14-for-14 on sideouts, and saw the offense open up for Reinig and Galloway, who each had three kills. Mathews had three blocks, and junior libero Kori Moster had a pair of service aces,(she had three on the night), including one on match point.
The third set was much closer, as MSU's largest lead was seven points (10-3). The Hawkeyes took advantage of seven Spartan hitting and service errors and had all three of its service aces in the set to battle back, cutting MSU;s lead to two and battling to the final points of the match. With MSU leading 23-21, the Hawkeyes committed back-to-back hitting errors to allow the Spartans to seal the match victory.
The Spartans now turn their attention to No. 9 Nebraska, which comes to MSU for a match at Jenison Field House at 7 p.m. Fans who are on campus for football can get free admission to the volleyball match with their ticket stub from the MSU vs. Indiana homecoming football game.
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