NU Aces First Tournament Test, Sweeps Stony Brook
LINCOLN, Neb. - The Nebraska volleyball team cruised into the second round of the NCAA Tournament with a 25-10, 25-14, 25-12 sweep of Stony Brook in front of a crowd of 8,213 at the Bob Devaney Sports Center on Saturday night.
The Huskers (27-4) won their 14th-straight match overall and 29th straight match at home on the strength of their serve. Nebraska had nine aces on the night - one shy of its season high - including a career-high four from Kenzie Maloney, and were not aced by the Seawolves (18-13).
Annika Albrecht had 14 kills and Mikaela Foecke had nine. The duo combined to hit .535 in the match without an attacking error. Lauren Stivrins added eight kills and six blocks in her NCAA Tournament debut.
Kelly Hunter set the Huskers to a .402 hitting percentage with 34 assists. She also added 10 digs and three blocks while posting her 13th double-double of the season.
Nebraska held Stony Brook to just .111 hitting, keyed by 9.0 blocks.
Set 1: Nebraska scored the first three points and never looked back, taking a 6-1 lead. The Huskers extended their advantage to 11-4 on back-to-back blocks by Stivrins, one with Albrecht and one with Hunter. Albrecht struck back-to-back kills and Maloney served a 6-0 run to put the Huskers up 19-6. Nebraska finished off a 25-10 win on Albrecht's fifth kill. NU outhit Stony Brook .424 to .074 in the first set and had three aces, with two coming from Maloney.
Set 2: The Huskers wasted no time in set two, again jumping out to a 6-1 lead as Albrecht and Maloney tacked on two more aces. After Stony Brook pulled within 9-6, the Huskers got a kill and block from Stivrins, as well as an ace from Sydney Townsend to make it 12-6. Maloney's fourth ace of the match put NU up 16-8. The Huskers closed out a 25-14 win, hitting .300 in set two.
Set 3: Nebraska pulled away from a 4-4 tie with a 9-0 run served by Hayley Densberger, which included an ace. Albrecht had four kills during the run and Stivrins chipped in a pair. Senior Allie Havers posted her first career kill to bring the crowd to a standing ovation, and she added another kill a couple rallies later to gain match point before the Huskers finished off the sweep at 25-12.
Up Next: The Huskers will face Washington State in the second round on Saturday at 7 p.m. That match will be televised on NET, streamed on BTN2GO.com and Huskers.com and will air on Husker Sports Network radio affiliates.
Nebraska Post-Match Notes
- Nebraska improved to 27-4 overall, including a 16-0 record at home.
- The Huskers won their 14th straight match overall and their 29th straight match at home, extending the longest active home win streak in NCAA Division I.
- Nebraska advanced to the second round of the NCAA Tournament for the 34th straight season.
- The Huskers improved to 72-7 all-time at home in the NCAA Tournament, including a 17-2 record at the Bob Devaney Sports Center.
- Nebraska has won 49 of its last 52 home NCAA Tournament matches.
- John Cook improved to 61-14 in NCAA Tournament play as Nebraska’s head coach, including a perfect 18-0 in first-round matches.
- Nebraska never trailed vs. Stony Brook and the match was tied only three times (1-1, 3-3 and 4-4 in the third set).
- Kelly Hunter had 34 assists and passed Rachel Holloway for the fourth-most career assists by a Husker in NCAA Tournament play with 499.
- Kenzie Maloney had a career-high four service aces. The school record for aces in a three-set NCAA Tournament match is five, accomplished five times by four different players.
- Nebraska's nine aces were its most in a three-set NCAA Tournament match since 2007.
- The Huskers' two starting outside hitters - Annika Albrecht and Mikaela Foecke - combined for 23 kills on 43 swings without, hitting .535.
- A total of six Huskers made their NCAA Tournament debut against Stony Brook (Hayley Densberger, Allie Havers, Sami Slaughter, Lauren Stivrins, Jazz Sweet and Anezka Szabo).
- The six Huskers making their NCAA Tournament debut combined for 17 kills on .382 hitting while adding seven digs, seven blocks and two service aces.
Washington State 3, Florida State 1
In the other first-round match-up in Lincoln, Washington State won a wild first set over Florida State, 34-32, and went on to win the match 3-1 to advance to the second round.
The Cougars outlasted the Seminoles in a first set that featured 20 ties and seven lead changes. Washington State carried that momentum into a 25-14 win in set two. Florida State responded with a 25-23 win in set three, but the Cougars pulled away in game four for a 25-13 win.
Taylor Mims had 28 kills, 22 digs and six blocks to lead Washington State (18-15). She took 79 swings on the night. Ashley Brown had 57 assists and nine digs. Four Cougars were in double figures in kills.
Taryn Knuth led Florida State (18-11) with 16 kills.