Browning Leads the Jays Past Illinois State
Nov. 10, 2012
OMAHA, Neb. - Despite a career-high 19 kills from Brooklyn Hlafka, the Illinois State volleyball team (15-11, 9-7 MVC) fell to No. 25 Creighton (24-3, 15-1 MVC) in four sets Saturday night. Ashley Rosch added 10 kills, Jenny Menendez recorded a match-high 30 digs and Kaitlyn Early posted 39 assists.
Creighton's Kelli Browning led the way for CU, posting 17 kills and a match-high .438 hitting percentage. The Jays posted eight more kills than Illinois State and recorded a .222 team hitting percentage, compared to the Redbirds .122.
The Bluejays started firing right from the start and took a 6-2 advantage with a kill from Browning and a service ace. The Redbirds earned five-straight points near the middle of the set with kills from LeighAnn Hranka and Hlafka and an ace from Menendez, taking the lead 13-12. The teams continued to exchange points until the Jays posted a late four-point run with two kills and the help of two ISU errors to close the set 25-21.
The second set was a battle of points back and forth until Creighton was able to break away to a 15-13 lead, forcing Illinois State to call a timeout. The Redbirds answered right back with a kill from Rosch and an ace from Hranka to tie the set 15-15. Browning posted two kills in three points for CU, but the Jays committed three attack errors in the final three plays allowing the Redbirds to capture the second set, 25-22.
Out of the break the Jays committed three attack errors in the first eight points, allowing ISU to jump out to an 8-4 lead. Creighton found a rhythm and compiled a five-point string with two blocks and three kills from Melanie Jereb, 11-10. The teams continued to exchange points throughout the rest of the set, until a kills from Hlafka and Hranka put the Redbirds at set point, 24-22. The Bluejays continued to fight and earned the next four points to win the third set in extra points, 26-24.
Illinois State opened the fourth set with a 3-0 advantage, but Creighton answered right back and posted five-consecutive points to take the lead, 7-4. The Redbirds were able to tie the set at 13-13, until the Jays took over and tallied an additional six-point run, 22-16. Back-to-back kills from Megan Bober and Michelle Sicner ended the match 25-17.
The Redbirds will return to the court when they host Southern Illinois and Evansville Nov. 16-17 at Redbird Arena.