Wisconsin volleyball takes down Notre Dame at Big Ten/ACC Challenge
MINNEAPOLIS -- Another outstanding offensive performance led the sixth-ranked Wisconsin volleyball team to a 25-16, 25-15, 25-16 win over Notre Dame at the Big Ten/ACC Challenge.
"I thought last night we [were] really excited about playing but I don't think we were locked in about competing," said head coach Kelly Sheffield. "I know there was a difference in us from how we played last night."
After recording just three blocks in a 3-0 win over Louisville on Friday, the Badgers outblocked the Irish, 7-6, recording four blocks in the first set alone. Wisconsin (2-0) edged Louisville, 41-39, in digs on Friday but dominated the Fighting Irish, 35-25, in the back row.
"No question [the defense] was better," said Sheffield. "We felt like even though we won last night, we probably won based on talent and offense. We felt like we lost the back-court battle defensively. We felt like we lost it at the net defensively."
Sophomore Haleigh Nelson led Wisconsin against Notre Dame with five blocks while junior Taylor Morey recorded a match-high 15 digs against her former team.
The Badgers again had a dominating performance on offense, hitting .346 (41 kills, 13 errors, 81 attempts) while holding Notre Dame to just .100 (24, 16, 80).
Senior Ellen Chapman keyed the Badger offense, putting away a match-high 12 kills. She also hit .440 with only one error on 25 attempts. Freshman Kelli Bates had the best match of her young career, tallying eight kills while hitting .357 (8, 3, 14).
"[Bates] has some ability," said Sheffield of his only freshman. "She's working hard and trying not to be a freshman. Everyday she's getting a little bit better and getting more comfortable. She had a nice day and she should feel good about it. It was a good match for her."
Sophomore Lauren Carlini put up 28 assists at setter and also led all players with three service aces.
The Badgers continue the non-conference season next weekend, traveling to the Northern Colorado/Colorado State Classic starting Friday.