- #1 Penn State at Illinois (Big Ten Match) 30-28, 25-11, 25-15
- Champaign, Illinois
- Penn State improves to 21-1 (11-0 Big Ten); Illinois drops to 16-7 (7-5 Big Ten)
- Attendance: 3153
- Box Score
After battling through a hard fought opening set that finished 30-28, the visiting Penn State Nittany Lions cruised to an easy sweep at Illinois, keeping their perfect conference record intact. The #1 ranked Nittany Lions hit .479 on the match compared to just .176 for the hosts. Simone Lee led the way for Penn State with 16 kills while Haleigh Washington and Heidi Thelen chipped in 10 kills apiece. Sharing setting duties, Bryanna Weiskircher and Abby Detering dished out 21 and 20 assists apiece while Kendall White paced the defense with 13 digs. With the win, the Nittany Lions improve to 21-1 (11-0 Big Ten) and will return to action on Wednesday, November 1st when they travel to face Michigan State.
Penn State dominated the match in every statistical category, leading the way in kills 52-38, assists 49-37, digs 37-32, and blocks 12-5.5. Both teams collected one ace.
Jacqueline Quade led the Fighting Illini with 16 kills while Beth Prince and Megan Cooney chipped in 9 and 7 kills respectively. Jordyn Poulter dished out 34 and Morgan O’Brien led the defense with 10 digs. The loss was the third in a row for Illinois who dropped to 16-7 (7-5 Big Ten) on the year. Illinois will return to action on Wednesday, November 1st to host Northwestern.
Courtesy of Penn State Athletics
Champaign, Ill. – The No. 1 Penn State women’s volleyball team moved to 21-1 and 11-1 in Big Ten play as they took down Illinois on the road, 3-0; 30-28, 25-11, 25-15.
Three Nittany Lions recorded double-figure kills led by Simone Lee (Menomonee Falls, Wis). Lee finished with a game-high 16 kills on .406 hitting. Heidi Thelen (Edgewood, Ky.) and Haleigh Washington (Colorado Springs, Co.) both added 10 kills. Thelen put down her 10 on a clip of .444, while Washington hit .769 with no errors.
Washington also dominated on the block, recording seven stops, including a solo stuff.
Kendall White (Indianapolis, Ind.) led the match with 13 digs and added five assists.
Abby Detering (Mentor, Ohio) had a well-rounded performance, tallying 20 assists, nine digs, and five kills on a .500 hitting percentage.
Bryanna Weiskircher (Rockford, Ill.) added 21 assists and six digs.
The opening set needed extra points to find a winner as the Nittany Lions trailed in almost the entirety. Penn State was able to escape five set-point situations and gained their first lead at 29-28 on a Thelen kill. Thelen put down the set-winning kill as well, giving the Penn State the 1-0 set lead.
In the second set, the Nittany Lions demonstrated their dominance, hitting .650 with 13 kills and no hitting errors. They also proved to be a defensive fortress, holding the Illini to a .000-hitting percentage, while tallying 6.0 blocks as a team. Penn State walked away with a 25-11 set two win heading into the intermission.
In the third and final set, Penn State started extremely hot, putting down 10 kills in their first 12 attempts, without committing a single error. The Nittany Lions finished the set hitting .607 with 19 kills to close out the match.
Penn State finished the match with a .479 hitting percentage with 52 kills, and 12.0 team blocks. They held Illinois to .176 hitting and avoided the ninth-best blocking team in the nation as the Illini only recorded 5.5 team blocks, 4.5 of which came in the opening set.
Penn State will hit the road again on Wednesday evening as the Nittany Lions head to No. 10 Michigan State for a 7 p.m. ET match in East Lansing, Mich.