The Nittany Lions trailed only twice in the match, to snap their four match losing streak. Penn State out-blocked Iowa 14-3 and out-hit the Hawks .345-.030.
Three Nittany Lions posted nine kills in the win, Simone Lee, Ali Frantti and Haleigh Washington. Washington also recorded a season-high 10 blocks. Libero Kendall White picked up 30 of Penn States digs.
For the Hawkeyes, Lauren Brobst led with nine kills, while Reghan Coyle added seven. Annika Olsen picked up 15 digs in the loss.
Courtesy of Penn State Athletics
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. – Behind one of its finest blocking performances of the season, the 11th-ranked Penn State women’s volleyball team (18-7, 10-4 Big Ten) cruised past Iowa (18-8, 8-6 Big Ten), 3-0 (25-11, 25-16, 25-17) in just under an hour and a half inside Rec Hall on Saturday afternoon.
The Nittany Lions trailed just twice during the match, as the team out-blocked the Hawkeyes by a staggering 11-block margin, posting 14 to Iowa’s three. The 14 blocks were the second most by the team this season, and the most in a three-set match during the 2016 campaign.
Junior middle blocker Haleigh Washington posted a season-high and team-best 10 stuffs. Redshirt sophomore setter Bryanna Weiskircher finished second on the team in rejections, posting a career-best-tying six. The effort played a large role in limiting Iowa to merely .030 hitting as a team.
On the offensive end, junior outside hitters Simone Lee and Ali Frantti along with Washington each scored a team-best nine kills. Washington was the most efficient attacker on the team during the sweep, finishing at an even .500 on the night, erring only once in 16 attempts.
The trio of Weiskircher, Lee and freshman libero Kendall White accounted for 30 of Penn State’s 41 digs. White led the team with 13, while Weiskircher and Lee added nine and eight, respectively.
Penn State will play two of its final three road matches of the regular season next, Maryland (Nov. 11, 8 p.m.) and (Nov. 12, 7 p.m.) on the docket for next weekend’s trip.
PSU led set one wire-to-wire, with the team registering seven total blocks over the set for a 25-11 blowout. Iowa was limited to -.212 hitting, as Washington and Weiskircher combined for nine block assists in the set. The frame opened with a 5-0 run for the Nittany Lions, with four blocks scoring before Iowa put up points of its own. Penn State jumped to a 13-7 lead before Iowa’s first timeout. White had a service error before a 6-0 spurt from Penn State grew the lead to 19-8. Kills from Lee and Washington set up set point, before Gorrell and Weiskircher made the set-winning rejection.
The second set was tied early before tough serving from Lee and a giant swing from junior opposite Heidi Thelen gave PSU a 9-4 advantage. The two sides swapped points before back-to-back kills from Weiskircher and Lee led Penn State to a 15-8 edge, forcing Iowa’s first timeout. At 17-11, Penn State pushed ahead for a 3-0 run, with a block by Washington and Frantti forcing Iowa’s second timeout at 20-11. Sophomore defensive specialist Keeton Holcomb was aced at the end of a 4-1 Iowa run to force PSU to take its first timeout at 21-15. The break worked, as Penn State let up only one more point, en route to a 25-16 set two win.
Set three stayed the most tightly contested, as both sides tussled back and forth to a 12-10 score. From there, a kill and a block from Washington guided PSU on a 4-1 run. A pair of kills from Lee and one from Frantti widened the gap to five, as Iowa took time, down 18-13. Thelen and Frantti pounded kills to force a timeout at 24-17, but it proved futile as Washington slammed down the kill next play to seal the match, 25-17.
-No. 11 Penn State swept past Iowa in three sets (25-11, 25-16, 25-17), improving the Nittany Lions overall record to 18-7 and Big Ten Record to 10-4.
-The win against the Hawkeyes marks the Nittany Lions 16th straight set victory of the season.
-Three Nittany Lions tied to lead the offense in the match. Junior Ali Frantti, junior Haleigh Washington and junior Simone Lee posted nine kills apiece.
-Penn State out-blocked Iowa 14.0 to 3.0, with multi-block performances by six different Nittany Lions. Junior Haleigh Washington led the blocking unit with a season-high 10 blocks. Redshirt sophomore Bryanna Weiskircher finished second on the team matching a career-high mark with six blocks.
-The Nittany Lions out-dug the Hawkeyes 41-32, led by a match-high 13 digs from freshman Kendall White.
-Penn State moves to a 50-0 advantage in the all-time series against Iowa and leads 25-0 in matches played at home in Rec Hall.
Haleigh Washington, junior middle blocker: Washington recorded a season-high 10 blocks and put down nine kills, marking her first match of the season with double-digit blocks. She also added three digs and served up an ace.
Simone Lee, junior outside hitter: Lee charted nine kills to go along with eight digs and four blocks, including one solo stuff.
Ali Frantti, junior outside hitter: Frantti logged nine kills while adding three digs, two blocks and one assist.
Bryanna Weiskircher, redshirt sophomore setter: Weiskircher passed out 29 assists, pacing the team to .345 hitting, and matched a pair of season-high marks posting three kills and nine digs. She also matched a career-high mark of six blocks.
Kendall White, freshman defense specialist: White registered a team-high 13 digs to go along with two assists.
Tori Gorrell, redshirt freshman middle blocker: Gorrell tallied five kills and posted three blocks and one dig.
Courtesy of Iowa Athletics
STATE COLLEGE, Penn. – The University of Iowa volleyball team battled hard but ultimately fell in three sets to 11th-ranked Penn State Nittany Lions on Friday afternoon in Rec Hall. The Hawkeyes are now 18-8 overall this season and hold an 8-6 mark in Big Ten play.
“Penn State is a national championship team and they played like it today,” said head coach Bond Shymansky. “They were hungry to get off their four-match losing slide here in the Big Ten, so we caught that buzzsaw. It took us a while to get it going, but the positive note is we climbed as the match went on. Our hitting percentage got better and better. In the third set, we were pressing and made it more competitive to give ourselves more opportunities.”
Lauren Brobst led Iowa with nine kills, while Reghan Coyle chipped in seven. Loxley Keala racked up 25 assists and six digs, while Annika Olsen had 15 digs.
Penn State took a 9-3 lead before the Hawkeyes used a 4-1 run to cut the home team’s advantage to 10-7. Reghan Coyle, Meghan Buzzerio and Ashley Mariani each racked up a kill during this stretch before the Nittany Lions secured a 25-11 set one victory. Coyle led the Hawkeyes with three kills, while Mariani and Buzzerio each chipped in two.
Buzzerio began set two with a monster kill before the home team scored back-to-back points to take the lead. Coyle then amassed the next two kills for Iowa to leave the home team with a 4-3 advantage. Penn State went on a run to extend its lead before the Hawkeyes used a 6-2 run to stop the Nittany Lions. Penn State clinched the second set with a 25-16 win. Brobst racked up four kills for the Hawkeyes during set two.
Iowa began set three with a 6-3 lead bolstered by one kill each from Buzzerio, Brobst and Janota as well as blocks from Mariani and Coyle. Penn State used a 5-1 run to take an 8-7. The two teams then scored back-and-forth points before the 11th-ranked Nittany Lions captured a 25-17 victory in set three.
Iowa takes the court again on Wednesday as they travel to No. 1 Nebraska to take on the Cornhuskers. First serve is slated for 7 p.m. (CT).