Illinois Fights Back With 5-0 Run In Fifth To Down Iowa On Road

  0 Carly DeMarque | October 21st, 2017 | Big Ten, College - Women's Indoor, News

Match Results

  • Illinois (RV) def. Iowa 3-2, (25-23, 21-25, 25-19, 23-25, 16-14)
  • Illinois improves to 16-4, 7-2 Big Ten, Iowa falls to 14-8, 3-6 Big Ten
  • Iowa City, Iowa
  • Attendance: 1,592
  • Match Stats

Illinois needed fight and five-sets to take down the Iowa Hawkeyes on the road, including four players in double-digit kills.

Illinois started off the first set with a 9-6 lead over the Hawkeyes before Iowa fought their way back to a 13-11 lead after a 4-0 run on kills from Reghan Coyle, Taylor Louis and Jess Janota. The Illini battled back into the set taking a late 24-22 lead. Iowa fought off one set-point with a kill from Janota but a Beth Prince kill sealed the deal for the Illini at 25-23.

The second set started with the Illini taking the lead early once again but Iowa fought their way back into the set to take the 18-16 lead late. A back and forth push from both team commenced the remainder of the set until Iowa put down the final two points to tie the match at 1-1 with a 25-21 second set score.

Illinois went on a number of runs in the third set to take a 10-6 lead early on. Kills from Megan Cooney stopped any effort that Iowa was trying to give in the set. They skirted their lead to 20-11 then 24-16. Iowa held off three match points before an Ali Bastianelli kill ended things at 25-19. The fourth set swang back in the favor of Iowa with a tight race to the end. The Hawkeyes finished off the set on a 3-0 run to force a fifth and deciding set at 25-23.

Iowa started out the fifth set with the 6-4 lead but a kill from Prince and a bad set from Gabrielle Orr tied things up at 6-6. The back and forth fight continued late into the set. The Hawkeyes looked to have things sealed up at 14-11 but a 5-0 run on kills from Jacqueline Quade and three blocks from Jordyn Poulter/Bastianelli secured the 16-14 comeback win for the Illini.

Illinois was led by Quade and Cooney, each with 16 kills with Quade posting four digs and four blocks. Bastianelli added another 14 kills and nine blocks while Prince contributed 12 kills in the win. Setter Poulter dished out 52 assists, 14 digs and eight blocks for a double-double while Morgan O’Brien and Caroline Welsh picked up 19 and 11 digs, respectively.

Louis posted a match-best 18 kills for Iowa while Janota and Claire Sheehan each posted 16 kills. Sheehan also picked up 14 digs for a double-double. Setter Orr handed out 52 assists and 12 digs for a double-double while Annika Olsen picked up a match-best 29 digs.

Press Release

Courtesy of Illinois Athletics

The Illinois volleyball team turned in a gutsy performance in Carver-Hawkeye Arena on Friday (October 20) night, fighting off three-straight match points and ending the fifth set with five unanswered points for a 3-2 (25-23, 21-25, 25-19, 23-25, 16-14) win over Iowa, the fourth-straight Big Ten Conference victory for the Illini.

With the win, the Illini improve to 16-4 and enter in a three-way tie for third place in the Big Ten with Minnesota and Michigan State with a 7-2 record, while the Hawkeyes drop to 14-8 and 3-6 in the league standings.

The Illini had four players reach double digit kills, led by a career-high 16 kills on a .314 hitting percentage from freshman Megan Cooney, with sophomore Jacqueline Quade joining her with a team-high 16 kills on the night. Junior Ali Bastianelli totaled 14 kills and a match-high nine blocks, while redshirt-sophomore Beth Princenotched 12 in the win.

Junior Jordyn Poulter continued her impressive play and came within two blocks of the program’s 13th triple-double with 52 assists, 14 digs and eight blocks to go along with an ace. It was the setter’s second-straight double-double, sixth of the year and 16th of her career.

Defensively, freshman Morgan O’Brien led the Illini with a career-high 19 digs, while sophomore Caroline Welsh joined her in double figures with 11 digs.

After the Hawkeyes came back to force a decisive fifth set, the two teams battled back and forth in a final frame that saw 10 ties and five lead changes. Neither team grabbed more than a two-point edge until the Hawkeyes strung together four-straight points to set up triple-match point at 14-11. Down but not out, the Illini responded with five-straight points to end the match as a Quade kill, followed by back-to-back Bastianelli and Poulter stuffs tied the score, before a Quade kill and another Bastianelli and Poulter stuff sealed the win.

It was a tightly contested opening set to the match, with the first period also seeing 10 ties and six lead changes. After falling behind early, the Illini took advantage of back-to-back Hawkeye errors to take a 9-6 lead. Iowa answered back to even things up at 11-11 as the two teams sided out throughout the next several points until UI broke a 21-21 tie by taking four of the last six points in the first for the 25-23 set one win.

The Illini used a quick start in the second to build a 6-2 edge following a service ace from O’Brien, but a 7-2 Hawkeye run put the home team ahead at 9-8. From there it was a side-out battle throughout much of the set, before back-to-back points gave the Hawkeyes a 21-18 advantage. An Iowa service error cut the Illini deficit to 23-21, but the Hawkeyes knotted the match at 1-1 with back-to-back points to take set two, 25-21.

The Illini broke an early 6-6 tie in the fourth with four-straight points, capped by a block from junior Blyake Hranicka and Cooney, to take a 10-6 edge. The visitors continued to hold the lead as a 7-2 run, including four-straight points highlighted by back-to-back service aces from freshman Emmaline Walters, propelled the Illini to an 18-10 advantage. After a Bastianelli kill set up set point at 24-19, the Hawkeyes fought off three set points before the junior middle blocker finished it off with a kill.

It was a similar start in the fourth with the Hawks breaking an earlier 6-6 tie on a 6-2 run to build a 12-8 edge. Iowa continued to lead at 16-12, but the Illini fought back to close within one at 18-17 on a Poulter kill. Illinois remained within a point over the next few points, before back-to-back points knotted the score at 21-21. The Illini looked poised to finish off the match in four after an ace from freshman Tyanna Omazic gave the visitors their first lead of the set at 23-22 and appeared to have match point at 24-23 when the Hawkeyes were flagged for being in the net. Iowa then challenged the call and was awarded with the call being overturned and the point given to the home team due to the Illini being ruled in the net instead. The Hawkeyes then finished off the fourth with a Taylor Louis kill to force a decisive fifth set.

The Illini continue their road swing in Lincoln, Neb., to take on No. 7 Nebraska on Saturday (October 21) at 7 p.m. CT in the Devaney Center.

For more Fighting Illini volleyball news, stay tuned to and follow @IlliniVBall on social media: Twitter | Instagram | Facebook.

Press Release

Courtesy of Iowa Athletics

The University of Iowa volleyball team dropped a 3-2 decision to Illinois on Friday night at Carver-Hawkeye Arena.

Annika Olsen tied a career-high with 29 digs and tallied a personal-best 11 assists for her first double-double of the season. This is Olsen’s 20th match of the season with double digits in digs.

Sets 1 and 2 (23-25, 25-21) | The Hawkeyes fell in set one, 25-23, but bounced back with a 25-21 win in set two. Claire Sheehan broke open a 14-14 score with back-to-back kills, and Jess Janota recorded a kill to set up the set-winning point and help Iowa tie the match, 1-1, before intermission.

Sets 3 and 4 (19-25, 25-23) | Iowa fell, 25-19, in set three, but again rebounded in set four. Iowa trailed 23-22 after a back-and-forth set, but a Sheehan kill and Taylor Louis kill clinched the rally and drew the match even at 2-2.

Set 5 (14-16) | The fifth set featured 10 ties and five lead changes before Illinois put together back-to-back point points to secure the set win, 16-14, and win the match, 3-2.

“We had two match-point swings and we need hitters to put the ball away in that moment. That was a big victory waiting for us there. I know it’s going to sting for our players. We have to find a way to bounce back tomorrow night against Northwestern.”

“I thought Jess was really good tonight. She really was an inspiration for us. Kelsey O’Neill followed her along. Brie Orr was really good as an attacking setter and also great with distribution. We had a lot of digs — 73 digs. Our serving finally came alive toward the end, but you have to learn to finish in that moment.”


  • Iowa had season-high 71 kills and a season-best 68 assists.
  • Brie Orr tied a career-high with nine kills and recorded a .562 attack percentage.
  • Three Hawkeyes — Sheehan (16), Louis (18), and Janota (16) — recorded double digits in kills.

Iowa squares off with Northwestern on Saturday night at 7 p.m. (CT) in Carver-Hawkeye Arena. The match is Iowa’s annual Dig Pink match. Fans are encouraged to wear pink in support of breast cancer awareness.


  • Iowa: 14-8, 3-6 B1G
  • Illinois: 16-4, 7-2 B1G

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About Carly DeMarque

Carly DeMarque

Carly DeMarque has been involved with competitive volleyball for the majority of her life, playing competitively at the club and collegiate level for 15 years and coaching club for five. Now a retired Division I volleyball athlete out of McNeese State University, she continues her volleyball enthusiasm by stepping back into …

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