Four-set victory over Wisconsin clinches a share of the Big Ten crown.
Lincoln. — The No. 4 Nebraska volleyball team (23-3, 16-2) sent the 2011 seniors out in dominant fashion with a 3-1 (12-25, 25-17, 25-13, 25-22) victory over the Wisconsin Badgers Saturday night at the NU Coliseum. In front of 4,188 fans, NU honored seniors Brooke Delano, Brigette Root and Jordan Wilberger in their final home match of the regular season.
With the victory, the 2011 seniors earned the 109th win of their careers and captured their third conference title as the Huskers earned at least a share of this season's Big Ten Conference crown with the win. Nebraska can win the Big Ten title outright on Tuesday with a win over Iowa.
Hannah Werth led Nebraska on the night with her ninth double-double of the season, as she totaled 14 kills and 13 digs. Jordan Wilberger produced a stellar senior night performance, with a career-high 12 kills, while also tying her career-high hitting percentage of .750. Morgan Broekhuis recorded 10 kills on the night, along with eight digs. Lauren Cook tabbed 38 assists and six digs for NU.
Lara Dykstra led Nebraska defensively with 14 digs. She now has a total of 355 digs on the year and ranks second in the all-time freshman digs record at Nebraska.
The Huskers hit .193 for the match, while Wisconsin hit just .116. Nebraska was out-dug 60-54, but out-blocked the Badgers 10-7.
Wisconsin came out on fire in the first set, taking an early 9-6 lead on a service ace and forcing Nebraska to use a timeout. Four-straight points for the Badgers put Nebraska down 18-10. The Huskers could not find an answer as Wisconsin strung together a five-point streak to take the set 25-12.
The Badgers hit a staggering .400 for the set, while Nebraska hit -.029. Werth led the Huskers with three kills, while Delano and Broekhuis both had two. NU totaled nine kills in the first set, compared to 13 for the Badgers. Nebraska was out-blocked 3-0 in the set and committed 10 errors compared to UW's zero.
Nebraska went up 5-3 early in the second set on an ace by Dykstra as Broekhuis then made it 6-4, Huskers with a kill. Wisconsin came back to take a 10-9 lead, but NU tied it up at 10 with a kill by Wilberger. The set was tied three more times until Nebraska notched a 16-15 advantage on a huge kill by Werth. The Huskers posted seven-straight points to take the second set 25-17 on a kill by Gina Mancuso.
Werth had five kills in the set, while Wilberger and Broekhuis both had three. Cook tabbed 10 assists, while the Huskers hit .364. Nebraska and Wisconsin both had 13 kills and one team block each. The Badgers hit .200 for the set, while committing six errors. NU also notched 14 digs as a team, highlighted by six from Mancuso and three from Dykstra.
Nebraska went up 5-2 on a kill by Wilberger in the early stages of the third set. The Huskers then stretched their lead to 10-4 with the help of a kill by Werth. NU would eventually use a four-point streak to take the lead at 18-10 with an error by the Badgers. The Husker dominance continued, as another kill by Werth put Nebraska ahead 22-13. Three-straight attack errors by Wisconsin helped Nebraska to a 25-13 third-set win.
Wilberger had five kills in the third set, as Werth tallied four of her own. Cook notched 10 assists as the Huskers hit .357. Dykstra led the team defensively with four digs, helping NU to a total of 10, while Delano had three blocks. Wisconsin was held to a -.188 hitting percentage and committed 13 errors.
NU came out and used a kill by Delano to go up 4-2 in the fourth set. Wisconsin inched back with a little more fight to knot the score at 10-all. The Huskers and Badgers would tie it again at 11, but with the help of a UW error, NU took a 17-13 lead. The Huskers made it 20-15 and later 21-18 before Wisconsin came back to tie it again at 21-21. At that point Nebraska took the momentum and went up 24-21 on another error by the Badgers. NU clinched the fourth set at 25-22, taking the match 3-1.
Wilberger and Broekhuis both tallied three kills in the fourth set, while Cook had 10 assists. Dykstra recorded six digs, while Werth had five. The Huskers out-blocked Wisconsin 4-3 and saw the Badgers hit just .048.
Nebraska returns to action on Tuesday to face the Iowa Hawkeyes in Iowa City, Iowa at 6 p.m. The match can be seen live on BTN.com with a subscription.
Source: University of Nebraska Athletic Dept.