(RV) Illinois Dispatches Iowa In Three Sets On Brandi Night

  0 Kyp Harasymowycz | November 23rd, 2017 | Big Ten, College - Women's Indoor, News


  • (RV) Illinois def. Iowa, 3-0 (25-19, 25-13, 25-12)
  • Illinois improves to 20-10, 11-8 Big Ten; Iowa drops to 18-14, 7-12
  • Champaign, Illinois
  • Attendance: 1981
  • Box score

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. – Illinois used an efficient attack and stingy defense from their lone senior, Brandi Donnelly, to quickly sweep the Hawkeyes Wednesday evening in Big Ten action (25-19, 25-13, 25-12). With the win, Illinois (RPI: 28) solidifies their resume with one match in Big Ten play remaining. On Saturday, the Illini visit Ohio State for their Senior Night.

Illinois libero and lone senior Brandi Donnelly dug a match-high 17 digs in her final match at Huff Hall. The Illini were led offensively by Ali Bastianelli who had a match-high 13 kills, hitting .550 and adding 3 blocks. Jacqueline Quade was also instrumental in the Illini attack, adding 10 kills and contributing 3 digs and an ace. Blayke Hranicka added 9 kills on 13 errorless attacks and blocked a match-high 5 balls. Junior setter Jordyn Poulter led the efficient offense (.316) with 37 assists, 9 digs, 3 blocks, 2 aces and 2 kills.

Iowa was led by Jess Janota with 11 kills, hitting .421, and adding a team-high 3 blocks to the defense. Freshman setter Gabrielle Orr dished out 26 assists and added 8 digs and 2 blocks for the Hawkeye defense. Senior libero Annika Olsen dug a team-high 11 balls for Iowa.

Iowa (RPI: 46) are now squarely on the bubble to be selected to the NCAA Tournament Sunday night. According to our last-8-in/first-8-out article on Monday, Iowa is improving, but just below our cut line, and must hope for teams in front of them to falter. Knocking off Ohio State (part of the last 8 in) twice in the last week helped, but the Hawkeyes probably needed a win at a red-hot Illinois to solidify their resume. The Hawkeyes now travel to Nebraska on Saturday and must wait for the NCAA Selection Committee to call their name Sunday evening.


Courtesy of Illinois Athletics

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. – The Illinois volleyball team celebrated its 2017 Senior Night for libero Brandi Donnelly and manger Sam Panozzo in style with a dominating 3-0 (25-19, 25-13, 25-12) sweep of Iowa in its home finale on Wednesday (November 22) night in Huff Hall.

Donnelly led all players with 17 digs in her final match at Huff Hall, while helping to hold the Hawkeyes (18-14, 7-12) to a .070 hitting percentage.

As a team, the Illini (20-10, 11-8) registered a .316 attack clip, with junior Ali Bastianelli leading the way with a match-high 13 kills on a .550 hitting percentage to go along with three blocks. Sophomore Jacqueline Quadejoined her in double figured with 10 kills, while junior Blayke Hranicka added nine kills on a .692 attack clip and a match-high five stuffs.

Junior Jordyn Poulter directed the Illini offense with 37 assists, while also contributing nine digs, three blocks and two service aces in the win.

After a quick 4-1 start to the match from the Hawkeyes, the Illini battled back to take an 8-6 lead on a kill from junior Beth Prince. The Illini continued to hold a two-point edge over the next several points, before an Iowa block knotted things at 12-12. After back-to-back Illini attack errors gave the Hawkeyes an 18-16 advantage, the Illini turned on the afterburners with a 9-1 run to finish the set at 25-19. The Illini opened the run with six-unanswered points – including four Quade kills – and then ended it with three-straight scores capped by a Prince kill.

It was all Illini in the second as five-straight points to open the stanza turned into a 15-4 lead for the home team, with another six-unanswered points on the back end of the run. Following back-to-back points from freshman Marijke Van Dyke that included a block with Hranicka and kill, the Illini pushed their edge to 23-10. After the Hawkeyes fought off two set points, a Bastianelli kill gave the Illini the 25-13 set win.

Another strong start from the home team put the Illini ahead at 7-2 on a Quade service ace. Iowa battled back to close within 9-6, but UI held the visitors at bay by taking the next four of five points as a Bastianelli solo block made it 13-7 midway through the third. After an Iowa service ace put the Hawkeyes within 16-11, the Illini again shut the door with a 9-1 run to end the set at 25-12 and take the 3-0 victory as a block from Hranicka and freshman Kylie Kuyava-Deberg sealed the deal.

Courtesy of Iowa Athletics

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. — The University of Iowa volleyball team dropped a 3-0 decision at Illinois on Wednesday night at the Huff Center.

Set 1 (19-25) | With the score knotted 18-18 after a tightly fought start to a set that featured nine ties and three lead changes, Illinois found momentum and took control, securing the set victory and a 1-0 match lead. Jess Janota led Iowa with five kills.

Set 2 (13-25) | The Fighting Illini continued their momentum from the first set did not trail, taking a 2-0 match lead into intermission.

Set 3 (12-25) | Illinois jumped ahead early and maintained control for the duration of the set en route to a 3-0 match victory. Janota led Iowa with five kills.

“We needed more as a team tonight. Our passing really fell apart there and it cost us greatly. When you have a big blocking team and you can’t pass in system, you are really going to struggle. We were in a great position there in the first set, competing hard and up 18-16, but we could not regain our focus and our team intensity. That’s what happens on the road in the Big Ten. We preach this all the time. You have to be so tenacious and you have to be steely about your will power and be able to dig back in.

“Our mission is still the same. Now we have a couple of days to prepare for the next match. I know our team will have a great Thanksgiving tomorrow. We have a lot to be thankful for. Then we head over to Nebraska to take on the Cornhuskers on Saturday. That’s another big task. They are another top five team and we will be playing in their gym, so we are going to have to respond better. We need a full team effort and a full team execution to be able to beat a great team like this on the road.”


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