Volleyball goes 1-2 at Webb-Burbridge Classic

BEN LAHART, Sports Writer

Coming off a scrimmage loss to Northern Illinois on the previous Saturday, Aug. 20, the UNI
volleyball team officially opened the 2022 season at the Webb-Burbridge Classic in Tempe, Ariz. last weekend. The team played two matches on Friday, Aug. 26 against Toledo, in the late morning, and Arizona State later that night, however the team lost both matches. The team turned their momentum around with a win the next day, Aug. 27, against California State University (CSU) Bakersfield.

In the first match against Toledo, the Panthers started off well taking the first set 25-18. Carly
Spies led the team with four kills while also tallying two blocks. The team did not fare so well in the remaining sets losing three straight 25-21, 25-19 and 25-17. The Panthers lost the match 3-1. Emily Holterhaus led the team with 10 kills in the match. Inga Rotto led the team with four blocks and Sydney Petersen led the team with two aces.

The later match on Friday, against Arizona State, was a highly contested and close match. Only one set finished with a point differential greater than two and in two of the sets the winning score was over 25.

The team started off well, winning two sets 27-25 and 25-23 before ultimately losing three sets in a row again, 26-24, 25-23 and the deciding set 15-10. Although the Panthers suffered a loss in the match, they still beat Arizona State in kills 65-61, while Spies and Rotto led UNI in kills with 15 each. Rotto also led the team in blocks with six while Tayler Alden led the team with three aces. The final score was 3-2. In their lone match on Saturday afternoon,
against CSU Bakersfield, the team swept the sets, winning 25-16, 25-19 and 25-20. Holterhaus led the team in kills in the match with 12 followed by Rotto with nine. Spies accounted for three of UNI’s eight aces during the Saturday contest and led the team with four blocks as well. The Panthers won the match 3-0.

All in all, over the course of the weekend the Panther volleyball team went 1-2 in their contests to start off the season. The Panthers, as a team, had a .201 attack percentage, outscored their opponents 197-188, and had a total of 16 more kills than their opponents over the three matches. Spies led the team in aces over the weekend with four while Rotto led the team with 33 kills. Spies also led the team with 11 blocks.

The next outing for UNI volleyball will come on Friday, Sept. 2, at the Bluejay Invitational in
Omaha, Neb. against the University of Southern California and the University of Kentucky followed by a match against Creighton University on Saturday, Sept. 3. The first chance to catch the team in the McLeod Center for the 2022 season will be at the UNI Tournament on Friday, Sept. 9, and Saturday, Sept. 10.