Gophers Defeat No. 20 Dayton in Straight Sets
The No. 10 University of Minnesota volleyball program defeated No. 20 Dayton in straight sets, this morning, as a part of Tulsa’s Golden Hurricane Classic. Minnesota defeated the ranked Flyers, 25-21, 25-21, 25-16. Minnesota (8-1) plays Kansas State (10-0), today at 4:30 p.m. The Wildcats are currently ranked 19th in the country.
Minnesota hit .341 to Dayton’s .066, outblocked the Flyers, 13.0 to 8.0 and led in digs, 37-31. Minnesota had three individuals have 10-plus kills. Katherine Harms had 13 kills in 29 attempts (.276), Tori Dixon led the team with a .562 hitting percentage and 11 kills, while Ashley Wittman had 12 kills in 21 attempts (.476). Mia Tabberson led the team with 22 assists, while Alexandra Palmer had 16. Lindsey Lawmaster had a team-high 10 digs and Dana Knudsen had a match-best nine block assists.
After going through 10 tie scores and four lead changes, the Gophers went on a 4-0 run midway and another 4-1 run towards the end of the first set, to take it, 25-21. Trailing 17-15, Minnesota would get three-straight kills from Wittman and Harms to go up 18-17. After a Dayton timeout, Palmer delivered an ace to go up, 19-17 and hold the lead for good. Minnesota had kills by Knudsen and Harms for a 21-18 lead, but Dayton would respond and put the set at 21-20 with back-to-back kills. Minnesota however, closed out the set with two kills by Harms for the 24th and 25th Gopher points.
Minnesota bettered its first-set hitting .310 to go up, 2-0. The Gophers jumped out to an early 7-2 lead in the second, only to have Dayton come back and tie the set at 7-7. Tied at 14-14, the Gophers added their third-straight point on a kill by Harms. Minnesota extended its lead to 20-16 on a Flyer attack error. Minnesota finished the set on an attack error by Dayton, back-to-back kills by Harms and Santana, a kill by Dixon and an attack error by Dayton heading into the break.
Minnesota cruised to a third-set 25-16 win as the Gophers hit .438 and only committed one attack error in 32 attempts. Minnesota jumped out to a 10-7 lead and never looked back. Wittman was on fire in the third set when seven of her 12 match kills came in the third. Hitting .700 in the third (7-0-10) Wittman and the Gophers closed out the match. After Dayton’s Rachel Krabacher had back-to-back kills, Minnesota went on a 7-0 tear. After a kill by Wittman, the Flyers had two-straight attack errors. Palmer added her second ace of the match, while Knudsen and Harms combined for two blocks. Wittman finished off the set with her 12th kill of the day and seventh of the set.