Iowa volleyball breaks losing streak

BY DI STAFF | OCTOBER 31, 2011 7:20 AM

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The Iowa volleyball team fell twice over the weekend, both by 3-1.

Iowa lost to Penn State on Oct. 28 (23-25, 25-18, 16-25, 20-25) and to Ohio State (25-23, 17-25, 17-25, 16-25), on Sunday. The two losses extend the Hawkeyes' losing steak to seven in a row and bring Iowa's record to 11-14, 1-11 in the Big Ten.

But the Hawkeyes ended a 15-set losing streak when they took the second set away from No. 8 Penn State.

Seniors Tiffany Nilges and Megan Eskew led the team offensively with four and six kills, respectively, in that second set. The Hawkeyes recorded 18 kills and a .415 attack percentage in the set, compared to the Nittany Lions' 13 spikes and .220.

"The second set was about as good of a set as we've played all year," head coach Sharon Dingman said in a release. "Tiffany was on fire, Megan was playing with intensity, and the team just followed their lead."

Although Iowa was unable to maintain its momentum for the rest of the match, the Hawkeyes came back on Sunday and took another set away from No. 23 Ohio State.

Iowa won the first set as setter Nikki Dailey recorded three kills and outside hitter Alex Lovell smashed down four.

Despite walking away with two losses for the weekend, Dingman said she's pleased to see her team finally gather some points and win some sets in Big Ten play. She said the team looked "a lot better" than it did one week ago.

"Without the win, I really couldn't be more proud of our team," she said in the release. "We fought hard, and we played with an aggressive mentality."

— by Molly Irene Olmstead

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