Staehlin Leads Redbirds in Sweep of Salukis
Nov. 17, 2007
NORMAL, Ill. - Senior middle blocker Kari Staehlin made the most of her final game at Redbird Arena, as she led the Illinois State volleyball team with 17 kills in a three-game sweep over conference and in-state rival Southern Illinois on Senior Night Saturday. With the win, ISU clinched the season-series sweep over SIU.
Illinois State improved its record to 19-10 overall and 11-7 in Missouri Valley Conference play. The Redbirds finished the regular-season portion of the Valley slate on a roll, as they swept four-straight conference opponents at home (Bradley - Nov. 3; Indiana State - Nov. 8; Evansville - Friday; Southern Illinois - Saturday). Southern Illinois dropped to 15-15 overall and 7-11 in the Valley.
Staehlin, a Tinley Park, Ill., native, led the Redbirds with a .615 hitting percentage. Freshman outside hitter Mallory Leggett also notched double-figures in kills with 15, while junior setter Erin Lindsey recorded a match-high 48 assists.
The Saluki offense was led by freshman outside hitter Jennifer Berwanger, who had 12 kills and a .235 hitting percentage.
The Redbirds took control of the match early, as they cruised to a 30-21 win in game one. Staehlin led the ISU onslaught, as she came up with six kills on a .667 hitting percentage. The Redbirds hit .316 as a team and finished the game on a 16-6 run.
ISU continued to roll in game two, besting the Salukis 30-27. The Redbirds and Salukis were tied 11 times in the game, but Illinois State was able to take three of the final four points to take a game-two victory. Lindsey set the pace for the Redbirds with 18 assists, while Leggett and Staehlin recorded seven kills apiece.
Illinois State completed the three-game sweep over Southern Illinois with a 30-24 win in game three. Leggett recorded a game-high six kills, while Lindsey followed her game-two performance with 17 assists.
Illinois State will return to action Friday, Nov. 23 at the State Farm Missouri Valley Conference Tournament at Hammons Student Center in Springfield, Mo. The Redbirds will enter the conference tournament as the No. 5 seed. A full tournament bracket will be released following the full slate of Missouri Valley Conference matches Saturday night.