Redbirds Offense Efficient, Dismiss Nevada 3-0
The Virginia Street Gymnasium
The Virginia Street Gymnasium

Sep 7, 2013

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RENO, Nev. - The Illinois State volleyball team (4-1) defeated Nevada (1-5) in straight sets (25-21, 25-20, 25-13) Friday in the second of two matches for the Redbirds on the day. Sophomore Ashley Rosch led ISU with 10 kills, while junior Kaitlyn Early conducted the offense, collecting 27 assists.

The Redbird offense was in peak form in the first set, clubbing a combined .342 hitting percentage on 16 kills. The match started with both teams combining for nine kills in the first 10 points, with Nevada holding an early edge, 6-4. Senior LeighAnn Hranka, who recorded four kills in the first set, took command of the offense, keying the Redbirds to tie the score after several quick points, 15-15. Rosch picked up two of her four first set kills, and ISU battled with Nevada, shrugging off some strong kills to wrap up the first set 25-21.

The second set demonstrated the balanced matchup that these two teams presented, as through the first 15 points, neither team ever held more than a one point lead. The Redbirds, following a service error by Nevada, would go up 8-7 and never relinquish the lead. ISU combined for 14 team kills, including three by junior Eliza Smith who started the second and third sets, and the Redbirds put away the Wolfpack, 25-20.

Heading into the third set, the Redbirds learned from their woes earlier in the day against Grand Canyon, and quickly dismissed of Nevada. Rosch collected four more kills and two service aces, senior Brooklyn Hlafka added three kills, and Illinois State, who scored the first five points of the set, easily rolled to their fourth victory of the season, 25-13.

The Redbirds will continue play at the Nevada-Reno tournament Saturday against Weber State at 11:30 a.m. (CT), followed by a night cap against UC Davis at 6:30 p.m. (CT).

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