In Battle Of MVC Unbeatens, Missouri State Topples #17 Northern Iowa

  0 Kyp Harasymowycz | October 15th, 2017 | College - Women's Indoor, Division I Mid-Major, News


  • Missouri State def. #17 Northern Iowa, 3-1 (25-23, 29-27, 20-25, 25-22)
  • Missouri State improves to 16-5, 8-0; Northern Iowa falls to 17-5, 7-1
  • Cedar Falls, Iowa
  • Attendance: 2919
  • Box score

CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – In a battle of undefeated Missouri Valley Conference teams, Missouri State knocked off its second-straight in-conference unbeaten, this time against #17 Northern Iowa in four sets (25-23, 29-27, 20-25, 25-22). The match was the second top-20 road victory of the season for the Bears, and extended their NCAA-best road winning streak to 18 matches. MSU also won their 24th-straight MVC match, dating back to last season. Additionally, this was only the third time in the all-time series that Missouri State won in Cedar Falls—and the second straight season of doing so.

Offensively, the Bears were led by Lily Johnson with a match-high 22 kills, hitting .313 on the night. 12 of those kills came in the deciding fourth set. She completed the double-double with 18 digs. Daniele Messa had the only other double-double in the balanced effort, with 31 assists and 16 digs. Aubrey Cheffey added 14 kills and Lynsey Wright added 11 on the evening. Libero Emily Butters had a milestone of her own; her match-high 23 digs moved her past Susan Rich for third on the all-time digs list at Missouri State.

For Northern Iowa, Piper Thomas was the consistent go-to with 20 kills hitting .471 on the night. Karlie Taylor had her 15th-straight match of double-figure kills with 11 to go along with her 19 digs for her fifth-straight double-double. Setter Heather Hook added her own double-double of 51 assists and 12 digs. Bri Weber rounded out the Panthers that had double-doubles with 14 kills and 23 digs of her own.


Courtesy of Missouri State Athletics

CEDAR FALLS, Iowa — For the second consecutive night, Missouri State came out on top of a meeting between unbeaten teams in Missouri Valley Conference play, this time earning a 3-1 win at 20th-ranked UNI inside the McLeod Center for the Bears’ second top-20 road victory of the season.

A night after a grueling five-set win at Drake, the Bears (16-5, 8-0) kept their winning streaks intact and took over sole possession of first place in the MVC standings by set scores 25-23, 29-27, 20-25 and 25-22 for their fourth win over a top-20 opponent in the last two seasons.

Off to an 8-0 start in the MVC for the fifth time in school history and first since 2009, Missouri State has now posted a winning streak of nine matches or longer in three consecutive seasons, while extending its school-record MVC win streak to 24 matches and its NCAA-best road streak to 18 straight wins.

Senior All-American Lily Johnson took over when the Bears needed her most, hitting 12 of her match-high 22 kills in the fourth set.

With the momentum squarely in UNI’s (17-5, 7-1) favor after a third-set win and 5-1 start to the fourth period, the Bears took the lead for good at 10-9 on a Lynsey Wright ace during what proved to be a 9-1 run that included five kills from Johnson and ended with MSU ahead 16-10. The Panthers closed to 19-17 when a service error followed by three consecutive Johnson kills gave the Bears a 23-17 lead. UNI spoiled three match points before Johnson sealed the win with another kill.

Missouri State trailed at only 1-0 in the first set and hit .343 in the period, led by Aubrey Cheffey‘s six kills on nine swings on the way 14 kills in the match, including the winner for 25-23 after the Panthers spoiled a pair of set point chances.

The Bears led 22-15 in the second set when the home team rattled off a 7-0 run for a 22-22 tie. UNI eventually earned a set point opportunity at 25-24 that was met by back-to-back Wright kills, and MSU converted on its fourth set point for the 29-27 win. The third set included seven lead changes and 14 ties, with UNI pulling away from a 19-19 score with a 5-0 run to extend the match.

Wright added 11 kills for the Bears, who hit .232 in the match compared to .218 for UNI, while each team had 64 kills and two aces. UNI held a 93-91 lead in digs and 9-7 advantage in blocks. Emily Butters scooped 23 digs to pass Susan Ruch for third on MSU’s career list, while Johnson added 18 and Daniele Messa had 16 to go with 31 assists. Emelie Orlando added 24 assists and Wright had a match-high five blocks.

Courtesy of Northern Iowa Athletics

CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – In a matchup that featured all kinds of streaks, Missouri State was able to score the upper hand with a 3-1 victory over the No. 20-ranked University of Northern Iowa volleyball squad on Saturday in the McLeod Center. Missouri State won by set scores of 25-23, 29-27, 20-25, 25-22.

The MVC tilt was the first conference matchup between two 7-0 teams since UNI squared off at Illinois State on Oct. 17, 2014.

Missouri State (16-5 overall, 8-0 MVC) extended its streak of consecutive Missouri Valley Conference victories to 24 in a row. The Bears have also won 18 straight true road matches and 17 consecutive MVC road matches.

UNI (17-5 overall, 7-1 MVC) saw its season-long seven-match win streak come to an end. The Bears defeated the Panthers in Cedar Falls for only the third time in program history – and second consecutive season.

MSU’s Lily Johnson recorded a match-high 22 kills to go along with 18 digs and two blocks. Johnson did the majority of her damage in the fourth set as she carried the Bears with 12 kills in 20 attacks and had no errors.

Piper Thomas notched a team-high 20 kills. Thomas had five kills in the first set and eight kills in the second set before finishing with four in the third and three in the fourth. Thomas hit .471 for the match and his hitting .399 through eight league matches.

Karlie Taylor had her 15th straight double-figure kill match. She also secured her fifth straight double-double with 11 kills and 19 digs.

Heather Hook added a double-double with 51 assists and 12 digs, while Bri Weber also joined the double-double club with 14 kills and 23 digs.

The Bears were able to take control of the match in the second set. Missouri State took the opening set and led 22-15 before UNI charged back with seven straight points to knot it at 22-22. UNI eventually had a set point at 25-24 but could not convert. The Bears extended the set and took the second stanza on their fourth set point, 29-27.

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