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Nebraska Volleyball Sweeps Penn State In a Hard-Fought Match

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The Husker defense powered an impressive win

Jordyn Senstock

Beth had to attend to sick children tonight, so I’m sorry, you don’t get insightful analysis. You will get my observations and possibly some gifs.

First Set

It took me a while to get access to live stats (sorry!).

The Huskers asserted themselves early and worked out to an 11-5 lead behind three kills from Lexi Sun and two from Kayla Caffey. Nebraska’s back row is on-point as Rodriguez, Akana and Knuckles are digging everything.

The Huskers first service ace came from...Lauren Stivrens? I’ll take it! She has proven to be an effective server when given the opportunity this season.

Nicklin Hames is feeding Maddi Kubik early but they aren’t connecting very well yet (I’m sure that will change). And, while Strivrins has a service ace, she also has two service errors. We may see Anni Evans back there at some point in the match.

Nicklin Hames is feeding her outside hitters. Kubik has 11 attempts and Sun nine so far. Stivrins and Caffey has seven total so far. The Huskers are now up 23-13 against a very motivated Penn State team. Kenzie Knuckles served into the net but the Huskers sided out very quickly.

Lauren Cook-West is singing the praises of Lexi Rodriguez and how poised and polished she is already as a freshman. An attack error by Penn State provides Nebraska with the set point.

Maddie Kubik put down five kills and Lexi Sun four. Lexi Rodriguez had seven digs and Lauren Stivrins has been a part of three blocks.

Nebraska 25 Penn State 14

Second Set

Lexi Rodriguez is amazing. (This has been a public service announcement from Corn Nation.)

The Nittany Lions came out with some fire and opened up an early lead at 3-1. The Huskers fought back to even the score at 3 apiece. Penn State continue to hold onto a two-three point lead for several long rallies and that continued to the midpoint of the set where Penn State opened up a 15-10 lead.

The Huskers are playing good defense, but keep making little mistakes as Penn State keeps the lead at 19-14. They have gifted 10 points to Penn State via service and attack errors in this set. Nebraska’s hitting percentage is in the negatives.

Nebraska closed within 19-15 but then the Nittany Lions rattled off three straight points to extend their lead to 22-15. In this set, it is the Huskers that look tentative and out-of-sorts. John Cook calls a much-needed timeout. He sends Whitney Lauenstein in to replace Lindsay Krause.

Nebraska goes on a 3-0 run behind the serves of Lexi Rodriguez and Penn State calls a timeout. The Huskers take advantage after that and tie up the set at 23-23 behind some well-placed hitting by the right side (which opened up the rest of the Husker offense) and some solid blocks (including a big solo block by Nicklin Hames).

The Huskers take the set on a long hit by Penn State. Akana deserves a lot of credit for her tough serving in the set.

Nebraska 25 Penn State 23

Third Set

The early rallies went back and forth as Nebraska and Penn State traded points until the Lions were able to grab a 6-3 advantage. Penn State pressed the issue to 9-5 but Nebraska rattled off three straight to make the score 9-8. After several rallies the Huskers are able to tie it up 12-12 on a Stivrin’s slide.Nebraska got their first lead of the set on a long serve by Penn State (14-13). After a PSU sideout, they served long again to keep the Husker advantage at 15-14.

Back and forth. Back and forth.

Nebraska took a lead at 20-19, but Penn State challenges the touch on a Lexi Sun kill and the point stays with Nebraska. Penn State then takes the next two points and the lead 21-20 and the Huskers call a time out.

The back and forth continued until Nebraska took a 23-22 advantage.

Then tied 23-23.

Then match point for Nebraska 24-23.

The Huskers win it in a sweep off of a touch on a long serve.