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Huskers Earn National Runner-up Finish

By NU Athletic Communications
Nebraska finished its season with a 33-2 record and the program's third NCAA Runner-up finish.
Nebraska finished its season with a 33-2 record and the program's third NCAA Runner-up finish.
Photo by Scott Bruhn/Nebraska Communications

San Antonio, Texas Behind 15 kills from tournament MVP Christal Morrison, third-ranked Washington dashed top-ranked Nebraska’s hopes for a third national title with a 30-26, 30-25, 30-26 sweep of top-ranked Nebraska Saturday evening at the Alamodome.

 

Morrison’s 15-kill effort led the Huskies (32-1) to the school’s first national crown, while ending the Huskers’ season at 33-2 and the school’s third runner-up finish (also 1986 and 1990). The Huskers fell one win short of becoming only the third in NCAA history to go wire-to-wire at No. 1.

 

All-Americans Sarah Pavan and Jennifer Saleaumua paced Nebraska’s effort, as the duo combined for 28 kills on .450 hitting. Pavan totaled a match-high 16 kills on .429 hitting, while Saleaumua closed out a sterling career with 12 kills one off her season high’s on .545 hitting and nine digs.

 

The match also marked the final appearance of three-time All-American Melissa Elmer, who had seven kills and five blocks as Nebraska was held to a season-low .185 hitting. Christina Hougtelling, who earned national player-of-the-year honors on Friday, was the third Husker to total double figures in kills with 10 kills, 11 digs and a career-high six blocks.

 

Pavan, Saleaumua and Houghtelling were each named to the championship all-tournament team.

 

Nebraska, which was out-hit for the first time in 2005, had more kills and blocks, out-blocking the Huskies, 14-13, behind nine blocks by middle blocker Tracy Stalls. The Huskers were done in by a rash of errors, committing 24 attack errors and nine service errors, compared to just one service miscue by Washington.

Washington took advantage of several Husker miscues in taking a 30-26 victory in the opener. Both teams held each other in check, as neither team hit over .100 while the two teams combined for 42 digs and 11 blocks. NU had seven blocks, including five by Stalls, but totaled only 12 kills and had eight attack errors and five service errors.

The Huskers started out slow, as the Huskies scored the first two points and forced a quick NU timeout. Nebraska regained itself with strong serving, using a 10-5 run to build a three-point lead on a Sarah Pavan ace, the third ace by Nebraska in game one. Leading 12-11, Washington took advantage of several Husker errors, as they scored four straight points to take a 15-12 advantage.

Nebraska kept trimming the deficit, pulling to within 21-19 after a block by Stalls and Houghtelling, but Washington responded with a 4-1 spurt to make it 25-20 after a Darla Myhre kill off an overpass. The Huskers fought back, pulling to within 27-25 off a Washington error, but could not get further into the Husky lead.

In game two, Washington’s offense came alive, as the Huskies out-hit Nebraska, .350-.196 in taking a 30-26 victory. Morrison did most of the damage for UW, totaling six kills and four blocks, as NU was out-blocked 5.5-2.0. Saleaumua and Pavan combined for 11 kills on 17 swings, as Saleaumua had six kills on eight swings.

Leading 6-5, Morrison led Washington on a 6-2 run with three kills and a block, as her kill gave the Huskies a 12-7 advantage. Nebraska battled back, pulling within 18-16 on a Houghtelling kill, but Morrison led UW to six straight points, as she totaled three kills and a block, including consecutive kills that made it 24-16 in favor of Washington.

Trailing 27-20, Saleaumua led the Husker comeback, as NU scored four unanswered points, including three off the serve of freshman Rachel Schwartz, to get within 27-24. That would be as close as Nebraska would get, as Washington closed out game two and took a 2-0 lead heading into intermission.

The Huskers came out swinging in game three as junior setter Dani Busboom sparked Nebraska to a 5-1 lead and forced Washington into taking a timeout. NU led 18-15, but Washington answered with three straight points, including consecutive kills by Morrison that tied the score. After the Huskies took their first lead of the game at 20-19, Nebraska fought back and took its final lead of the match at 23-22 on a kill from Pavan. The Huskies answered with three straight points and closed the game on an 8-2 run to claim their first-ever national championship.

 

Washington hit .237 as a team and was paced by Christal Morrison, who had 15 kills and was named Most Outstanding Player. Sanja Tomasevic and Brie Haggerty also finished in double figures, totaling 12 and 10 kills respectively. The sweep by the Huskies marked the first time since the 2002 season that NU had been swept and only the third time in Head Coach John Cook’s six years at NU.

 

Fans can celebrate Nebraska's outstanding season by welcoming the team home on Sunday at the Coliseum. Doors open at 12:30 p.m. and the team is expected to arrive at approximately 1:15 p.m.

 

-- Huskers --

 

 

Washington vs Nebraska (Dec 17, 2005)



Volleyball Box Score


Volleyball Box Score Nebraska Volleyball Washington vs Nebraska (Dec 17, 2005 at San Antonio, Texas)

Washington | ATTACK |SET| SERVE |SRV|DEF| BLOCK |GEN ## Name GP| K E TA PCT| A| SA SE| RE|DIG|BS BA BE|BHE|POINTS ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ 2 Deesing, Alesha..... 3| 6 2 14 .286| 1| 0 0| 0| 0| 0 4 0| 0| 8.0 3 Thompson, Courtney.. 3| 1 0 1 1.000| 41| 1 0| 0| 10| 0 2 0| 2| 3.0 9 Morrison, Christal.. 3| 15 7 44 .182| 0| 0 1| 1| 9| 1 6 1| 0| 19.0 11 Myhre, Darla........ 3| 6 0 11 .545| 0| 0 0| 0| 1| 1 5 0| 0| 9.5 15 Danicic, Danka...... 3| 0 0 0 .000| 1| 1 0| 0| 11| 0 0 0| 0| 1.0 21 Tomasevic, Sanja.... 3| 12 5 34 .206| 1| 0 0| 0| 13| 1 2 0| 0| 14.0 8 Aratani, Ashley..... 3| 0 0 0 .000| 0| 1 0| 0| 4| 0 0 0| 0| 1.0 10 Hagerty, Brie....... 3| 10 5 27 .185| 0| 0 0| 1| 3| 0 1 2| 0| 10.5 14 Lee, Candace........ 3| 0 0 0 .000| 2| 1 0| 2| 10| 0 0 0| 0| 1.0 ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ Totals.............. 3| 50 19 131 .237| 46| 4 1| 4| 61| 3 20 3| 2| 67.0

TEAM ATTACK PER GAME TOTAL TEAM BLOCKS: 13.0 Game K E TA Pct 1 15 11 46 .087 GAME SCORES 1 2 3 TEAM RECORDS 2 17 3 40 .350 Washington.......... (3) 30 30 30 32-1 3 18 5 45 .289 Nebraska............ (0) 26 25 26 33-2

Nebraska | ATTACK |SET| SERVE |SRV|DEF| BLOCK |GEN ## Name GP| K E TA PCT| A| SA SE| RE|DIG|BS BA BE|BHE|POINTS ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ 1 Griffin, Maggie..... 3| 0 0 0 .000| 25| 0 1| 0| 1| 0 0 0| 1| 0.0 3 Houghtelling, Chris. 3| 10 7 38 .079| 1| 0 1| 2| 11| 0 6 0| 0| 13.0 8 Elmer, Melissa...... 3| 7 5 23 .087| 0| 0 0| 0| 1| 0 5 3| 0| 9.5 9 Pavan, Sarah........ 3| 16 4 28 .429| 2| 2 3| 2| 5| 0 3 0| 0| 19.5 10 Larson, Jordan...... 3| 1 5 20 -.200| 1| 1 4| 0| 12| 0 2 0| 0| 3.0 26 Saleaumua, Jennifer. 3| 12 0 22 .545| 1| 0 0| 0| 9| 0 3 0| 0| 13.5 5 Schwartz, Rachel.... 3| 0 0 0 .000| 0| 0 0| 0| 1| 0 0 0| 0| 0.0 7 Mancuso, Dani....... 2| 2 1 6 .167| 1| 0 0| 0| 4| 0 0 0| 0| 2.0 11 Stalls, Tracy....... 3| 3 2 9 .111| 4| 0 0| 0| 0| 0 9 1| 0| 7.5 18 Busboom, Dani....... 3| 0 0 0 .000| 16| 1 0| 0| 7| 0 0 0| 1| 1.0 ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ Totals.............. 3| 51 24 146 .185| 51| 4 9| 4| 51| 0 28 4| 2| 69.0

TEAM ATTACK PER GAME TOTAL TEAM BLOCKS: 14.0 Game K E TA Pct 1 12 8 49 .082 Site: San Antonio, Texas (Alamodome) 2 20 10 51 .196 Date: Dec 17, 2005 Attend: 8482 Time: 1:44 3 19 6 46 .283 Referees: Joan Powell, Brian Hemelgarn University of Washington wins its first national championship in school history

1 2 3 Total Tie scores 5 2 7 14 Lead changes 2 1 3 6

Short Box Score


Short Box Score (Match) Nebraska Volleyball Washington vs Nebraska (Dec 17, 2005 at San Antonio, Texas)

Washington def. Nebraska 30-26,30-25,30-26

Washington (32-1) (Kills-aces-blocks) - Morrison, Christal 15-0-7; Tomasevic, Sanja 12-0-3; Hagerty, Brie 10-0-1; Deesing, Alesha 6-0-4; Myhre, Darla 6-0-6; Thompson, Courtney 1-1-2; Danicic, Danka 0-1-0; Lee, Candace 0-1-0; Aratani, Ashley 0-1-0; Totals 50-4-13.0. (Assists) - Thompson, Courtney 41. (Dig leaders) - Tomasevic, Sanja 13; Danicic, Danka 11; Lee, Candace 10; Thompson, Courtney 10; Morrison, Christal 9

Nebraska (33-2) (Kills-aces-blocks) - Pavan, Sarah 16-2-3; Saleaumua, Jennifer 12-0-3; Houghtelling, Chris 10-0-6; Elmer, Melissa 7-0-5; Stalls, Tracy 3-0-9; Mancuso, Dani 2-0-0; Larson, Jordan 1-1-2; Busboom, Dani 0-1-0; Totals 51-4-14.0. (Assists) - Griffin, Maggie 25; Busboom, Dani 16. (Dig leaders) - Larson, Jordan 12; Houghtelling, Chris 11; Saleaumua, Jennifer 9

Site: San Antonio, Texas (Alamodome) Date: Dec 17, 2005 Attend: 8482 Time: 1:44 Referees: Joan Powell, Brian Hemelgarn University of Washington wins its first national championship in school history

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