Serving Powers No. 10 Huskers to sweep Rutgers
Nebraska’s No.10 volleyball team claimed their sixth straight victory Sunday afternoon, beating Rutgers, 3-0 (25-19, 25-9, 25-12), at the Rutgers Athletic Center. With the win, the conference-leading Huskers improve to 12-3 (6-0 Big Ten), while the Scarlet Knights drop to 8-9 (0-6).
Madi Kubik paced Nebraska for the sixth straight game with 11 kills on .280 strikes, adding nine digs, two blocks and an ace.
Lindsay krause totaled nine kills on .421 hit. Nicklin Hames finished with 30 assists, eight digs, three blocks, two kills and an ace.
Serve stole the show from the Huskers, who tied their season high with 10 aces on serve while ceding only one to RU. Kenzie Knuckles led the charge to the service line with three ace services, and Keonilei Akana and Lexi rodriguez each added two more.
Rodriguez also anchored the defensive effort with a record 17 digs. Lauren Stivrins and Callie schwarzenbach added three blocks apiece, while Stivrins scored six kills and Schwarzenbach scored five.
Nebraska hit .255 and held Rutgers at just .042. The Huskers came away with the advantage in kills (42-19), assists (37-17), aces (10-1), recoveries (54-38) and blocks (7-4 ).
Rutgers was led by five kills each from Kamila Cieslik and Megan Vernon.
A pair of early wins from Krause got the Huskers started as they took a 6-2 lead. The Scarlet Knights managed to come close two to three times until a UK serve error and an ace from the Knuckles pushed him back to 13-9. Kubik had two kills to strengthen his lead to 16-11, at which point RU took a time out. The Scarlet Knights went 5-1 from there, and NU called for another break maintaining a 17-16 lead.
Ally Batenhorst followed by a kill to start a 5-1 run punctuated by an ace from Hames to cause another RU timeout at 22-17. A strong serve ended for the Huskers, with a kill from Krause and back-to-back aces Knuckles putting the set 25-19.
Knuckles had three of NU’s five aces in the opening set. Kubik has had four wins, and Krause and Batenhorst each have three.
NU went flawlessly on his first 24 shots of the second set, and Rutgers was held at -114 to strike as a team. RU won the first point of the set on a setting error for their only lead of the game, but the Huskers quickly settled in. They used an 11-2 push to force a Rutgers timeout to 13-4.
The advantage extended to 17-5 with the help of a Hames / Schwarzenbach block, a Anni evans as and a Kubik kill. NU closed it by edging Rutgers 7-1 behind a kill from Lauenstein, an ace from Rodriguez and two blocks, topping the set at 25-9.
The Huskers warmed up to an efficiency of 0.467 in the third set, with four kills from Schwarzenbach and four more from Kubik.
Kubik finished twice from the back row to reach double digits in the knockout stages and put NU in the lead 11-6. A 7-1 streak with four straight wins – capped by Schwarzenbach – then bolstered the lead to 20-9, and Stivrins and Knuckles finished the sweep with back-to-back wins.
Rate today’s game
-Today’s win over Rutgers was the Huskers seventh sweep of the season.
-Nebraska are the only team still unbeaten in conference at 6-0.
-The Huskers lead the all-time series with Rutgers 11-1 and have triumphed in 11 in a row. All of those 11 games have been as Big Ten peers.
-NU has a 7-0 advantage over Rutgers on the road.
Nebraska returns home to the Devaney Center on Wednesday, October 13, welcoming Indiana. The first service is set for 8 p.m. and the game will be televised on ESPNU. John Baylor and Lauren Cook West will also have the radio call on Huskers Radio Network.