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Win streak continues for volleyball team

EMMETT LYNCH, Sports Writer

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The Panther volleyball team bounced back from a recent loss that broke their three-game win streak, after beating Northern Illinois on Superhero Night in Cedar Falls. UNI then went on to win two consecutive games in the Kangaroo Klassic against Rutgers and South Dakota.

After a loss against the University of Missouri–Kansas City (UKMC), the Panthers struck back with a big win against in-state rivals, the Iowa State Cyclones, which proved to be a huge momentum switch and boost that the Panthers needed. UNI then went on to create a three-game win streak at the Omaha Challenge in Omaha, Nebraska at the Baxter Arena.

The Panthers took back to back victories in Omaha, beating the University of Nebraska-Omaha Mavericks. Out of a game of four sets, the Panthers took the 3-1 victory over the Mavericks.

Bri Weber recorded her 1,000th career dig and became the 17th player in Panther history to record 1,000 digs. She ended the game with her 38th career double-double with 23 digs and 14 kills. Senior Heather Hook recorded her 29th career double-double this season with 10 digs and 42 assists against the Mavericks.

The Panthers then went on to upset the No. 10 ranked University of Nebraska 3-1. UNI has four wins this season over ranked opponents: University of Southern California (USC) Mizzou, Iowa State, and Nebraska, currently the most of all Division One teams.

Their win over Nebraska was the first time in history that UNI beat the Nebraska Cornhuskers. Hook had a .636 hitting percentage with seven kills, seven digs and 40 assists. Sophomore Karlie Taylor recorded six of her 15 kills, which was a team high.

Taylor and Weber tied for team honors due to kills. The Panthers three-game win streak came to an end in a nail-biting 2-3 loss against Kansas State. Weber tied her career high with 22 kills. She also added 17 digs for her 41st career double-double. Hook recorded her 30th double-double with 18 digs and 58 assists. 

Fatigue played a part in the Panthers loss. UNI assistant coach Kalani Mahi stated, “When you play three physical teams in a 24-hour period you hope there’s enough in the tank.”

It is clear that in volleyball, playing multiple games in a day can be exhausting. After that three-game win streak, the Panthers still fought in a five-setter that went down to the wire against Kansas State.  

The next game is away against Valparaiso on Friday, Sept. 22nd.

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Win streak continues for volleyball team