No. 6 Huskers suffer third conference loss at hands of Purdue
WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. -- Nebraska (21-5, 14-3) dropped a 3-0 (24-26, 21-25, 16-25) decision to the No. 25 Purdue Boilermakers on Friday night at Holloway Gymnasium.
The Boilermakers handed the Huskers their third conference defeat of the season and the second in the 2013 series with NU. The last time the Huskers were swept on the road was at Purdue on Nov. 12, 2011.
Kadie Rolfzen tallied 12 kills on the night, while Kelsey Robinson had 11 kills and a team-high 10 digs. Nebraska hit .136 for the match and tallied only six team blocks. Purdue hit .302 on the night and notched 11 blocks. The Boilermakers out-dug NU 44-32.
No. 2 Penn State 3, Northwestern 0
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -- Double-digit kill performances by four Nittany Lions led No. 2 Penn State (25-2, 16-1) to a 3-1 (25-17, 25-18, 31-33, 25-20) victory against Northwestern (16-13, 8-9) on Friday evening at Rec Hall. The win extends the current PSU winning streak to 16 consecutive matches.
Sophomore Megan Courtney led the offense with a career-high 21 kills, adding 17 digs for her fifth double-double of the season. Senior Deja McClendon posted her seventh double-double of the season, registering 16 kills and 11 digs. Senior Ariel Scott and junior Nia Grant each added 11 kills in the triumph, led by Grant's match-high .529 hitting percentage.
Recording two aces, junior Micha Hancock set a new program record as she tallied two aces to bring her career total to 237, which moves her in front of Ellen Hensler (1982-86) into sole possession of first place on the all-time list.
No. 4 Missouri 3, Mississippi State 0
COLUMBIA, Mo. -- Missouri swept Mississippi State 3-0 (25-19,25-16, 25-17) on Friday night at the Hearnes Center to clinch the program's first conference championship and the school's first SEC championship since joining the league prior to last season. The Tigers improve to a national-best 32-0 and 16-0 in the SEC. The win earns Mizzou an automatic berth to next month's NCAA tournament, the 11th in 14 years under Wayne and Susan Kreklow. The win is also the 300th since the Kreklows took over the program in 2000.
One of the huge differences in the match was Mizzou's ability to terminate play as it hit .327 while limiting MSU to .122 hitting. A big key to that was Mizzou pulling in 53 digs, led by 18 from junior libero Sarah Meister and 16 more from Kan, who finished just shy of a double-double with nine kills. Freshman defensive specialist Loxley Keala added eight digs in the win as well.
No. 7 Florida 3, LSU 0
GAINESVILLE, Fla. -- Friday night in the O’Connell Center was all about Gator seniors Taylor Brauneis and Chloe Mann, as a crowd of 2,626 celebrated the duo’s contributions to the Florida program in a pre-match ceremony prior to UF’s sweep against LSU (25-16, 25-19, 25-20) in the Gators’ regular-season home finale.
Sophomore outside hitter Gabby Mallette turned in a career night with 15 kills and her third-best hitting efficiency of the season (.458), while Mann registered her second-highest hitting percentage of the conference season (.714) with 10 errorless kills. For Mann, Friday marked her ninth SEC match with in double-digit slams, thanks in part to Brauneis’, who dished up 39 assists, her most since Nov. 3 at Texas A&M.