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Sept. 8, 2001

Nebraska sweeps Notre Dame
Lincoln -- Junior outside hitter Laura Pilakowski posted 14 kills to the lead top-ranked Nebraska volleyball team to a 31-29, 30-22, 30-20, win over No. 20 Notre Dame before 4,207 fans at the NU Coliseum Saturday afternoon.

In the Huskers' second match of the US Bank/Arby's Classic, Pilakowski became the first player other than senior right side hitter Nancy Metcalf to lead Nebraska in kills in a match this season.

The victory also marked the 200th career win for NU Coach John Cook, and kept the Huskers' home match winning streak alive at 32.

Nebraska, which improved to 5-1, moves on to face No. 7 UCLA Sunday at 3:30 in the tournament finale. No. 15 Pepperdine and No. 20 Notre Dame (3-2) will meet at 1 p.m. Sunday.

"I thought Notre Dame gave us a great match today," Cook said. "I was very impressed with their effort. We will face a totally different team in UCLA tomorrow. We haven't seen a player like Kristee Porter yet this year, and I think it will be a very competitive match.

Joining Pilakowski with double-digit kill totals was Metcalf, who had 11, and junior middle blocker Amber Holmquist, who added 12 on a .529 hitting percentage. Junior setter Greichaly Cepero recorded her first double-double of the season, notching 42 assists and 10 digs in leading the Huskers to a .319 team hitting percentage.

In what both coaches labeled as a pivotal first game, Nebraska trailed most of the way before a four-hits call against Notre Dame tied the score at 22. The Irish took over again, leading 25-24 after kills from Kristy Kreher and Marci Bomhack. NU's Anna Schrad tied it up again with an ace serve, and then the squads exchanged points three more times before Notre Dame went up 29-28 after a Nebraska hitting error.

Pilakowski tied it at 29 with a kill, forcing a game-point situation on both sides. The Huskers finally wrapped up the 31-29 first-game win when Jenny Kropp and Pilakowski combined for back-to-back blocks of Malinda Goraliski.

"It was a huge letdown to lose that first game," Notre Dame Coach Debbie Brown said. "If we were going to have any edge, that was going to be it. And then Nebraska really picked things up in the second game."

Source: University of Nebraska Athletic Dept.


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