UNI now No. 2 seed in MVC Tournament

JOSHUA STENGER
Bri Weber, No. 4, earned 13 points at the game against Southern Illinois. Weber is an outside hitter and has started in 31 matches during this current season.

EMMETT LYNCH, Sports Writer

This historic UNI volleyball season only has a few regular season games left this year. The Panthers are looking to end it with a bang.

Following the Panthers’ victory over Indiana State on Senior Night in the final game in the McLeod Center, NI suffered a tough loss to Missouri State. This was a 3-0 loss to clinch a share of the 2017 Missouri Valley Conference volleyball regular season championship. Missouri State won by set scores of 25-23, 25-23 and 25-21.

This was a fifth straight win for the Bears in the series versus UNI.  This loss marks the seventh loss this season and a record of 13-3 in the Missouri Valley.

Sophomore Karlie Taylor posted her 20th double-double this season with 12 kills and 22 digs. Junior Piper Thomas tallied 13 kills at a .423 hitting percentage. Redshirt freshman Kate Busswitz stepped on the scene and registered a career-high five blocks in the matchup against the Bears.

The Panthers then went on to bounce back from the loss with a 3-0 sweep on the road against Missouri Valley foe Southern Illinois. UNI won by set scores of 25-16, 25-20, 25-19 in Davies Gymnasium in Carbondale, Illinois.

This win gave UNI volleyball the No. 2 seed in the upcoming Missouri Valley Conference Tournament. The MVC Tourney is set to take place this Nov. 23 to 25. Taylor put on a career-high performance by notching her 21st double-double this season and hit for a .483 hitting percentage, tallying 14 kills and 13 digs.

Junior Bri Weber also recorded a double-double with 12 kills and 11 digs. Thomas’ hot hand continued to strike as she tallied up 11 kills and a .375 hitting percentage. This loss makes Southern Illinois’ overall record fall to 6-21 and 5-11 in the Missouri Valley.

The Panther volleyball team will be wrapping up regular season play this Saturday, Nov. 18  in Des Moines, against the Drake Bulldogs.

This has been a record-setting regular season for the UNI volleyball program, and it should be far from over.