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NCAA Volleyball: Nebraska’s ball control and defense defeat Hawaii

Nebraska’s great defense and smart attacking sends #12 Hawaii home

Jon Johnston

#5 Nebraska beat #12 Hawaii in three sets, 29-27, 25-22, 25-19

Jazz Sweet looked great for a third NCAA tournament match in a row. She hit .345 with 12 kills on 29 attempts. Her swings were all strong, solid and caused real problems for the excellent Hawaii defense.

Nebraska’s defense looked just as skilled as Hawaii’s. Kenzie Knuckles played smart and aggressive. Her smart portion was being in good position when the hitter contacted the ball. Her aggressive was going after balls that hit off the block. She was a big part of why Nebraska was able to beat Hawaii in three.

Hawaii is hard to defend against because of their excellent control of the ball and their ability to hit so many shots. When they can hit very hard but also place it wherever they want, defenses start to guess rather than react to what is happening. Nebraska played disciplined defense and it was pretty to watch.

Lexi Sun played at a very high level. She hit the shot she had in front of her, smart! She rolled the ball to the middle of court when the defense was playing deep, she hit off the blockers hands when they were well formed in front of her and she pounded the ball when she was inside of the block. She hit .619 with 14 kills on 21 attempts. That is excellent!

Nebraska plays again tomorrow at 6 pm EST against, you know who, Wisconsin.

Wisconsin won easily in three sets against Texas A&M.

The NCAA tournament bracket

Matches already complete today:

#1 Baylor wins over #16 Purdue 3-1 (25-12, 23-25, 25-15, 25-17)

#8 Washington wins over #9 Kentucky 3-1 (25-16, 26-24, 15-25, 25-22)

#4 Wisconsin wins over #13 Texas A&M 3-0 (25-20, 25-17, 25-23)

Louisville wins over #2 Texas 3-2 (25-22, 25-22, 17-25, 18-25, 15-12)

Game notes for Louisville: Former Nebraska assistant coach Dani Busboom Kelly is now the head coach for Louisville. She is in her third year as the head coach and taking Louisville to their first every regional finals.

Amber Stivrins plays for Coach Busboom at Louisville and is the younger sister of Lauren Stivrins. Amber is a freshman outside hitter. She had 8 kills and 7 digs in the Texas match.

Other action tonight

Minnesota vs. Florida Friday Dec. 13 6:30 p.m. ESPN3

Penn State vs. Cincinnati Friday Dec. 13 8 p.m. ESPN3

Stanford vs. Utah Friday Dec. 13 11 p.m. ESPNU