Panther women fall to Cyclones in Ames

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Panther women fall to Cyclones in Ames

COURTESY PHOTO/UNI Athletics

COURTESY PHOTO/UNI Athletics

COURTESY PHOTO/UNI Athletics

COLIN HORNING, Sports Writer

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Following a tough weekend in which they hosted and lost to three top 25 teams, USC, Kentucky and Creighton, the Panther volleyball team looked to get back to winning ways against in-state rival Iowa State in Ames on Tuesday. Despite the animosity between the two teams and the natural motivation that comes with playing an in-state opponent, the Panthers could not break out of the slump losing three sets to one.

The first two sets were difficult for the purple and gold. Iowa State easily took the first set, 25-18, followed by a 25-19 victory in the second set. Avoiding a sweep, the Cats fought back in the third set to win a hard-fought battle, 26-24.

Karlie Taylor led UNI with 24 kills for the game, followed by Jaydlin Seehase with 11 and Kate Busswitz with eight.

The Panther women have gone through a tough stretch of games recently with three close defeats over the weekend and another at the hands of Iowa State. However, head coach Bobbi Petersen is encouraged by what she sees in her team.

“We had a great weekend in terms of volleyball competition,” Petersen said. “I don’t think there were any games that should have disappointed anyone. There were a lot of great, competitive matches. It takes a lot out of us both mentally and physically, but when we schedule this way we talk a lot about being able to refocus, refuel and to be ready for that next competition.”

The schedule does not get much easier for UNI in terms of back-to-back games, but the Panthers will only play one top 25 team, No. 21 Missouri, in the next six games.

Up next, UNI will take their talents to Columbia, Mo., for a four-game weekend slate in the Mizzou Invitational. Matchups will include Missouri-Kansas City, Missouri, Boise State and Austin Peay.