Nov. 21, 2012
EAST LANSING, Mich. - Michigan State volleyball fell to Michigan at home, 3-0, on senior night at Jenison Field House. The Spartans (23-8, 11-8 Big Ten) lost by scores of 24-26, 20-25, and 20-25. After sweeping Michigan (22-11, 10-9) in Ann Arbor earlier this year, the State Pride Flag came down to total points and MSU edged Michigan, 139-133. A record-setting crowd of 5,059 fans took in the match at Jenison Field House and it was the third-largest crowd in program history.
Also, junior Lauren Wicinski set the single-season record for service aces in a season adding four tonight to bring her total to 77. The previous record of 75 was set by Jane Zenner in 1983.
"First of all, the crowd here was awesome," head coach Cathy George said. "This is a record attendance here at Jenison and it was great to see the place filled and also to honor our seniors tonight. It is great to keep the State Pride Flag and keep it in our house, we split with Michigan every year and it often comes down to points. We will keep it in our trophy case and celebrate that, but we sure would have liked to play better and more of MSU volleyball. Michigan did a great job."
The Spartans secured the State Pride Flag for the third straight season and it is the second consecutive year that it has come down to points. Michigan State honored seniors Amy Dentlinger, Chelsey Probst and Stefanie Shiramizu following the match for their hard work and dedication to the program.
The Spartans dropped the opening set 26-24 in a narrow finish down the stretch. MSU took an 11-6 lead after Kori Moster surprised the UM defense with a kill, forcing them to use a timeout. The Wolverines responded with a 5-0 to tie the match 14-14 after a kill from Lexi Erwin and it was a back-and-forth set from then on. MSU took a 24-21 lead late in the set after a UM error and Michigan called a timeout. Michigan fended off three straight set points to tie the match at 24 and used an ace and a MSU error to take set one.
MSU fell to Michigan in set two, 25-20, and hit just .176 percent in the set. Lauren Wicinski tied the record for aces with her second of the night and Michigan State trailed 15-13. Kori Moster assisted on back-to-back Spartan kills to make it 21-19, but MSU couldn't close the gap.
It only took five points into the third set for Wicinski to clinch the record with her third ace of the night, putting MSU up 3-2 early on. MSU took a 15-10 lead after yet another Wicinski ace forced a Michigan timeout. Michigan took a 20-17 lead after going on a 10-2 run following the timeout. The Spartans trailed 23-20 before Lexi Erwin recorded two straight kills to finish off the match.
Wicinski led MSU with 14 kills and sophomore Kori Moster had 16 digs and six assists. Kristen Kelsay and Halle Peterson each had 15 assists in the match. The Spartans lost the blocking battle, recording just three to Michigan's 10 and was out-hit in the match .343 percent to .231.
The Spartans close out the Big Ten season on Saturday, Nov. 24 at No. 1 Penn State. Match time is set for 8 p.m.