- #18 Wisconsin def. Rutgers 3-0 (25-15, 25-8, 25-13)
- Wisconsin moves to 20-9 (11-9 Big Ten); Rutgers falls to 5-27 (0-20 Big Ten)
- UW Fieldhouse, Madison, Wisconsin
- Attendance: 6,012
- Box Score
The Wisconsin Badgers put a bow on their 2017 regular season on Saturday with a dominant 3-0 sweep of Rutgers, allowing the Scarlet Knights to score only 36 points across three sets (fewer than the 42 Rutgers scored against Penn State on Friday).
“I liked the fact that we handled our emotions on Senior Night. You always want that,” head coach Kelly Sheffield said of the performance. “Like we said, the best gift you can give the seniors is not to stay up all night making scrapbooks—or whatever it is that people do—it’s to be ready to play. And to make sure that there is great energy and great vibes as you’re walking off the court. Not to end things with a loss, or just playing crummy, you’re happy that you went off on a high note.”
For Rutgers, the loss finished off an 0-20 Big Ten season. This is the 2nd-straight year in which Rutgers hasn’t won a game in the Big Ten, and 3rd in the last 4. They’ve won a total of 1 Big Ten contest across their 4 years since joining the conference.
Of Rutgers’ 20 losses, 18 were in sweeps – they picked up 1 set against Michigan and 2 against Indiana.
Wisconsin only out-blocked Rutgers 8-6, but with a 40-27 dig advantage held the Scarlet Knights to -.012 hitting. Wisconsin also had 8 aces while Rutgers had none – which broke a 39-match streak of at least 1 ace for Rutgers dating back to last season. Rutgers only had fewer kills in their two games against Penn State this season.
Senior outside hitter Lauryn Gillis, who struggled against Penn State on Friday, led the Gophers offensively on Saturday. She had 11 kills and just 1 error for a .500 hitting percentage on senior night. She also added 4 total blocks (3 assists, 1 solo) and 10 digs for her 2nd double-double of the season and 9th of her career.
Wisconsin freshman Sydney Hilley had 5 service aces, a career-high, including 3 in a run of 6 points in the 2nd set.
A bright spot for Rutgers was sophomore middle blocker Stasa Miljevic. Besides recording 6 kills on just 9 swings, she had 5 block assists. That makes 2 straight games against top 0 opponents in which she recorded 5 blocks.
The win for Wisconsin doesn’t do much to help their opening-round-hosting chances, given that Rutgers has an RPI of just 224. The NCAA selection committee has historically leaned heavily on RPI for determining hosts for the opening weekend, and Wisconsin should be hovering right around the top 16 after this weekend’s results. The coaches’ rankings (#11) had them higher coming into this week than did the VolleyMob rankings (#18), and Wisconsin finishes the season tied with Michigan for 7th in the Big Ten. They’ll earn an invite, but a seed could be in jeopardy.
The 2017 NCAA Women’s D1 Volleyball Selection Show will air live on Sunday evening on ESPNU. More details here.
Courtesy Wisconsin Athletics:
MADISON, Wis. – Seniors Lauryn Gillis and Kelli Bates led the 11th-ranked Wisconsin volleyball team in a sweep of Rutgers in the final match of the 2017 regular season. The Badgers won 25-15, 25-8, 25-13 at the UW Field House Saturday night.
Gillis recorded a double-double thanks to a match-high 11 kills and 10 digs. Bates notched nine digs and seven kills in the UW win. Sophomore Madison Duello chipped in eight kills for the Badger offense.
Wisconsin (20-9 overall, 11-9 Big Ten) hit .385 (40 kills – 10 errors – 78 attempts) on the night while holding Rutgers (5-27, 0-20) to negative .012 (20-21-84).
Freshman Sydney Hilley recorded a career-high five service aces to help UW out ace RU, 8-0.
At the net, the Badgers out blocked the Scarlet Knights, 8-6. Freshman Dana Rettke lead the way with five stuffs.
- Wisconsin records its fifth-straight 20-win season.
- Senior Lauryn Gillis led all hitters with 11 kills and .500 hitting percentage (11K – 1E – 20TA). She also added 10 digs for her second double-double of the season and the ninth of her career.
- Freshman Sydney Hilley recorded a career-high five service aces, including three in a span of six points in the second set.
- UW’s eight service aces are the second most in a match this year.
“I liked the fact that we handled our emotions on Senior Night. You always want that. Like we said, the best gift you can give the seniors is not to stay up all night making scrapbooks—or whatever it is that people do—it’s to be ready to play. And to make sure that there is great energy and great vibes as you’re walking off the court. Not to end things with a loss, or just playing crummy, you’re happy that you went off on a high note.”
-Head Coach Kelly Sheffield
“I was very emotional, but that’s how I expected it to be. The Field House fans are absolutely unbelievable in terms of their support for you, and their support for seniors especially—they truly appreciate what you’ve done for the program. And that means so much, especially after watching all of the other seniors go through the same thing.”
-Senior Kelli Bates
It was over when…
After winning the first set 25-15, the Badgers came out swinging in the second set to take an early lead. After allowing Rutgers to score the first point of the set, UW went on a 10-0 scoring run, the longest scoring run of the match. Sydney Hilley served three aces and Dana Rettke put down three kills during the stretch to give the Badgers a 10-1 advantage.
The 64-team bracket for the 2017 NCAA Tournament will be announced Sunday at 8 p.m. on ESPNU. The Badgers are looking for their fifth straight and 19th overall tournament appearance.
Courtesy Rutgers Athletics:
MADISON, Wis. (Nov. 25, 2017) – Rutgers volleyball wrapped the 2017 season with a straight-set loss (25-15, 25-8, 25-13) at No. 11 Wisconsin on Saturday evening at the UW Field House in front of 6,012 fans.
The Badgers (20-9, 11-9 B1G) hit .385 as a team while holding Rutgers to a negative hitting percentage, along with zero service aces for the first time in 39 matches dating back to the 2016 season. The Scarlet Knights (5-27, 0-20) combined on six blocks compared to UW’s eight.
Sophomore middle blocker Stasa Miljevic posted five blocks for the second consecutive evening against a Top 15 team, matching a career high in Big Ten play. She also paced the offense with six kills on a .556 swing percentage (6-1-9), her 16th match this season with at least five kills. She closes the season leading the team in hitting percentage at .258 and was one of three Scarlet Knights to play in all 32 matches this fall.
Freshmen Beka Kojadinovic and Yana Kamshilina added five kills apiece, while Kojadinovic, sophomore setter Megan Sharkey and sophomore libero Karysa Swackenberg each scooped six digs.
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