Marquette Advances to NCAA Second Round
Dec. 4, 2015
MINNEAPOLIS, Minn. -- For the third time in program history the Marquette women's volleyball team has advanced to the second round of the NCAA Championship with a five-set (25-17, 22-25, 25-11, 23-25, 15-9) victory over Northern Iowa (19-15) on Friday evening at the Sports Pavilion.
The Golden Eagles (22-11) matched a program record for the NCAA Championship with 69 total kills, led by a match-high 26 from redshirt freshman Taylor Louis. Louis broke MU's single season kills record in the match and has totaled 593 kills this season. Jenna Rosenthal and Meghan Niemann also contributed to the Golden Eagles kills total with 11 and 10 kills, respectively with seven blocks for Rosenthal.
Setter Sarah Blasier set a new program record in the NCAA Championship dishing out 51 assists and collected her team-high 14th double-double of the season adding 11 digs. She also connected on siz kills and hit at a .600 clip.
"I really liked the way we played the fifth. We had not been extremely successful this year in five-set matches," head coach Ryan Theis said. "I was really proud of our effort throughout the match. I thought their energy was high, I thought they were engaged and I thought they did a terrific job throughout, but I really like the way we closed in the fifth. Ten kills, no errors. We didn't give them anything. We've been trying to be better in those situations so it was great to see. I'm very happy for these guys and I'm looking forward to tomorrow."
After breaking a 5-5 tie with a 4-0 run in the first set, Marquette did not trail again in the set as Teal Schnurr tipped the ball to give MU a 25-17 victory. The Golden Eagles held UNI to just a .093 clip, while combining to hit .326 with just three errors.
After UNI evened the match at 1-1, Marquette rolled to a 25-11 victory in the third set. The fourth set was a close battle with the Golden Eagles holding on to a 17-15 lead after Louis connected on a kill and then kept MU in front, 22-21 after another tally. From there, the Panthers capitalized on errors from Marquette and closed out the frame with a 4-1 run.
In the decisive fifth set, the two squads traded points to open the frame and was tied at 8-8 before Blasier and Louis ignited a 3-0 run and forced UNI to call timeout. It was the duo of Louis and Blasier again out of the break, as they led the Golden Eagles to a 7-1 run as Blasier used a dump kill to end the match and advance MU to the second round.
The Golden Eagles hit .343 as a team on Friday, including .526 in the fifth set with no errors.
Marquette will face the winner of No. 2 Minnesota and Jackson State, Saturday at 6:30 p.m. Central time in Minneapolis.
GOMARQUETTE.COM THE OFFICIAL HOME OF MARQUETTE ATHLETICS