Nov. 9, 2011
The No. 16 University of Minnesota volleyball team earned a 3-0 win over Michigan State, tonight at the Sports Pavilion. With the win, the Golden Gophers improve to 15-9 on the season and 8-7 in the Big Ten Conference. Michigan State dropped to 18-9 and 7-8 in the conference standings.
The Maroon and Gold were led by Ashley Wittman as she had 11 kills and 11 digs for her 15th double double of the season. Katherine Harms also reached double digit mark when she had 10 kills, while Hailey Cowles had seven kills and a match-high 17 digs. Kellie McNeil had a match-high 35 assists and a career-high four aces.
Minnesota hit .282 in the first set en route to a first-set win of 25-20. The Gophers went on a 4-0 run and then another 5-1 run early in the first set to go up, 16-9 early in the first set. Minnesota was at set point, 24-28 but MSU extended the set getting back-to-back points, but a MSU service error helped the Gophers to a set win. Wittman had five kills and six digs in the first set, while Cowles and Harms each had three. McNeil also had two aces in the set.
The Gophers went up, 2-0 when Minnesota won the second set, 25-22. Minnesota went up, 17-13 before MSU took its second timeout. MSU battled back and put the Gopher lead to three at 20-17. After back and forth play, the Gophers were at set point, 24-19. For the second-straight set, the Spartans closed the gap to 24-22 before Dixon finished the set with her fourth kill of the night.
Wittman added another five kills while McNeil added another two aces for the set win and the sweep, 25-18. After Minnesota had a 17-13 lead in the third before MSU battled back to cut the Gopher lead to one, 17-16. Minnesota regrouped after taking a timeout and then posted four-straight points to go up again, 20-16. Minnesota finished the set getting the last three of four points on an ace from McNeil, a kill by Ariana Filho and Harms.
Minnesota hosts No. 24 Michigan on Sunday at 1 p.m.
Gophers earn No. 2 seed in NCAA Tournament
Minnesota will host the first and second rounds at the Sports Pavilion, hosting Jackson State, UNI and Marquette.
Gopher Volleyball Wins Big Ten Title
Minnesota wins its first Big Ten Conference championship title since 2002 and went 18-2 in league action.
Game Day Live: Gophers at Indiana
Follow the Gophers as they close out the Big Ten Conference season against Indiana, tonight at 6 p.m. CT.