Huskers Fall at Wisconsin
MADISON, Wis. - The fourth-ranked Nebraska volleyball team fell for the first time in Big Ten play as No. 11 Wisconsin topped the Huskers 3-1 (25-16, 25-15, 17-25, 25-23) on Wednesday night in front of a crowd of 6,012 at the UW Field House.
The Huskers (13-4, 6-1 Big Ten) had their seven-match win streak snapped by the Badgers, who broke out of a three-match skid to improve to 12-4 overall and 3-4 in the Big Ten. Wisconsin outhit the Huskers .296 to .163 and had a 13-8 advantage in blocks.
Jazz Sweet had 11 kills to lead the Huskers. Briana Holman had nine kills and three blocks, and Mikaela Foecke added nine kills and 11 digs. Annika Albrecht finished with eight kills and nine digs.
Kelly Hunter had 35 assists and 10 digs for her fifth-straight double-double. Kenzie Maloney had 11 digs, and Lauren Stivrins had a team-high four blocks to go with five kills.
Wisconsin was led by Madison Duello's 13 kills. Dana Rettke had 12 kills and eight blocks.
Set 1: The Huskers played the first set from behind after falling down 4-1. With the help of four early Wisconsin service errors, NU got within one on five occasions but couldn't tie the score. The Badgers pulled ahead 13-8 after a 5-1 run with all five points via kills. Foecke and Albrecht hammered consecutive kills to cut it to 14-11, but Wisconsin went on a 6-1 run to go up 20-12. The Badgers finished the 25-16 win with a .382 hitting percentage, while the Huskers were held to .000 hitting and were blocked five times.
Set 2: Wisconsin took control immediately with a 9-1 spurt to open the set. Nebraska would get within six at 16-10 but could get no closer as Wisconsin went up 2-0 in the match after a 25-15 victory. The Badgers limited NU to -.094 hitting in the frame and had five blocks.
Set 3: Nebraska took its first lead of the match after an ace by Foecke made it 5-4. The Badgers reclaimed a 9-7 lead with a 4-1 run, but Albrecht tallied a kill and an ace to even the set at 9-9. With NU down 11-10, Holman took over with two kills and a solo block on three straight rallies. Wisconsin then committed an attacking error for a 14-11 Husker lead. Stivrins tipped a kill to the floor, Sweet tooled the block, and Albrecht and Stivrins posted a stuff block for a 19-13 advantage as the Huskers picked up steam. After Wisconsin cut it to 20-16, Hunter dumped a kill, and a Stivrins kill followed by a pair of Badger hitting errors had the Huskers up 24-17. NU clinched the set on a stuff block by Foecke and Holman. Nebraska was much sharper in set three, hitting .368 to just .121 for the Badgers. The Huskers had 18 kills after totaling 14 in the first two sets combined. The Huskers outblocked the Badgers 3-1.
Set 4: Wisconsin committed two service errors and Albrecht and Foecke had kills as the Huskers went up 5-3 early. Wisconsin came back to take a 9-8 lead after a 3-0 run, but another dump by Hunter and a solo block by the captain made it 10-9 Huskers. Wisconsin led 16-14 when Sweet tallied her ninth kill, and Foecke terminated to tie the set at 16-16. A block by Stivrins and Albrecht gave the Huskers a 17-16 edge to cap the 3-0 run. After Wisconsin tied it 17-17, Albrecht posted a kill and Foecke and Stivrins combined for a block and a 19-17 lead. The Badgers tied the set at 20-20 after a kill and block by Rettke, and the Huskers spent a timeout. Another kill by Rettke put the Badgers up 22-21, and Duello followed for a 23-21 Badger advantage. Sweet sparked the Huskers out of a timeout with back-to-back kills to tie the set at 23-23. But Rettke earned match point for the Badgers, and Duello got a kill to finish the match, 25-23.
Up Next: Nebraska will look to rebound at No. 16 Purdue on Saturday at 6 p.m. (CT).