Illinois Set for Halloween in Huff vs. Maryland

  0 volleymob | October 24th, 2018 | Big Ten, College - Women's Indoor, News

Courtesy: Illinois Athletics

The No. 7 Illinois volleyball team have a quick turnaround as it welcomes in Maryland on Wednesday (October 24) for Halloween at Huff Hall. Halloween festivities begin at 6 p.m. CT, with first serve set for 7 p.m.

The Illini own a 6-0 record in the all-time series against the Terrapins, including a 4-0 mark in Champaign. Illinois swept its only meeting with the Terps last season on October 14, the Illini’s 2017 Pink Night.

The Illini earned a sweep of the state of Michigan over the weekend, with a five-set 3-2 win over No. 13 Michigan on Friday, before a quick straight-sets victory over Michigan State on Saturday night.

Senior Ali Bastianelli helped lead the Illini with 30 kills on a .423 hitting percentage for a 3.75 kills per set average to go along with 10 blocks for a 1.25 blocks per set mark, while helping to hold the Illini’s foes to a .189 attack clip.

Bastianelli turned in a career-high 19 kills on a .417 hitting percentage and a match-high seven blocks in a win over the Wolverines on Friday night, before posting 11 kills on a .438 attack clip and three blocks in a sweep of the Spartans.

Sophomore Morgan O’Brien registered a team-high 31 digs for a 3.88 digs per set average and came within two digs of her career-high with a match-high 22 against the Maize and Blue.

After leading the Illini to a sweep of the state of Michigan over the weekend, senior Jordyn Poulter was named the Big Ten Conference Co-Setter of the Week, the league announced on Monday (October 22).

Poulter collects her fourth weekly conference accolade of the season and the seventh of her career, while the Illini as a team have earned six Big Ten weekly honors on the season.

The Aurora, Colorado native totaled 106 assists for a 13.25 assists per set average, while leading the Illini to a .266 team hitting percentage. Along with directing the offense, Poulter added 24 digs for a 3.00 digs per set mark, eight blocks, five kills with no errors on nine swings for a .556 hitting percentage and two service aces in the back-to-back wins.

Poulter made history on Friday night against the Wolverines as she moved into third place in program history for career assists with a career-high 63 helpers – and currently owns 4,536 assists in her Illini career – while also posting 17 digs, four blocks, four kills on a .571 attack clip and two service aces for her 10th double-double of the season and 33rd of her career. She then followed up that performance with another balanced outing with 43 assists, seven digs and a match-high four blocks, while leading the Illini to a .327 team attack percentage against the Spartans on Saturday night.

Senior Ali Bastianelli has established herself as one of the all-time blocking greats and with five blocks in a win over Northwestern on October 6, became the career blocks leader at Illinois.

Entering the match, Bastianelli needed only three blocks to break Johannah Bangert’s (2007-10) record of 653 total blocks and after tying the mark with stuffs in the opening set, the senior made history with her next block in the third. The Marysville, Michigan native currently owns 676 blocks in her Illini career.

Earlier this season Bastianelli became just the second player in program history to reach 600 career total blocks after crossing that threshold with 15 stuffs at the CSU Invitational on September 7-8.

Along with becoming the Illinois career blocks leader this season, Bastianelli also became the Big Ten Conference career block assists leader with seven stuffs in a win against No. 13 Michigan on Friday night, breaking former Illini Johannah Bangert’s record of 613. The senior currently owns 620 block assists.

The quarterback of the Illini offense since she arrived on campus in 2015, senior Jordyn Poulter moved into third place in program history with a career-high 63 helpers on Friday night against No. 13 Michigan and currently owns 4,536 assists in her four years at Illinois. Melissa Beitz (1996-99) ranks first in program history with 5,797 assists from 1996-99.

Earlier this season, Poulter became just the fourth-ever Illini to reach 4,000 career assists in program history after posting 39 helpers in a win over Northern Iowa on September 14.

Junior Jacqueline Quade has paced the Illini offense with 324 kills on the season for a 4.21 kills per set average on a .265 hitting percentage.

Quade is the co-leader in the Big Ten and ranks 31st in the nation in kills per set, while her kill total sits second in the league and 46th in the NCAA.

Along with leading in kills, Quade also owns a conference-best 4.77 points per set mark, which also ranks 23rd in the country. She has registered 367.5 total points on the season, good enough for second in the Big Ten and 38th in the nation.

Senior Jordyn Poulter leads the Big Ten and is sixth in the NCAA with 11.70 assists per set. She owns 901 helpers on the season to pace the conference and rank 28th in the country.

In conference action, Poulter ranks second with a 11.95 assists per set mark and has totaled 454 helpers.

With 4,536 total career assists, Poulter sits third in the NCAA active career leaders list.

With the win over No. 13 Michigan on Friday, the Illini have now registered seven wins against AVCA Top 25 teams, including a pair of Top-10 wins with No. 8 Wisconsin on October 13 and No. 10 Creighton on September 15.

Other top-25 wins for the Illini include No. 25 Colorado State, No. 21 Colorado, No. 13 Washington and No. 16 Purdue.

Illinois volleyball seniors Jordyn Poulter and Ali Bastianelli have been named candidates for the Senior CLASS Award, it was announced on Monday (October 1). The Illini duo are two of 30 candidates up for the award, which honors student-athletes who excel both on and off the field.

Illinois is one of just two schools with two candidates along with Creighton, while the Big Ten boasts five total honorees.

Candidates must have notable achievements in four areas of excellence: community, classroom, character and competition. An acronym for Celebrating Loyalty and Achievement for Staying in School, the Senior CLASS Award focuses on the total student-athlete and encourages students to use their platform in athletics to make a positive impact as leaders in their communities.

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