The No. 13 Minnesota Volleyball team (10-2) defeated No. 20 North Carolina (8-1) 30-22, 30-20 and 30-26 in the final match of the Nike Invitational on Saturday, Sept. 14.
Lindsey Vander Well (Prinsburg, Minn.), Cassie Busse (Prior Lake, Minn.) and Erin Martin (Ames, Iowa) were named to the All-Tournament team while Vander Well was honored with MVP honors. In addition, Holly Strauss and Katie Wright from North Carolina were selected to the squad as well as Ball State’s Sarah Obras.
In the first game, Minnesota jumped out to a 15-5 lead. From that point, the Golden Gophers led the remainder of the game to win 30- 22. Jessica Byrnes (Minnetoka, Minn.) had five kills to help capture game one.
The Golden Gophers led 22-18 and closed the game scoring eight of the last ten points to win 30-20. Minnesota hit .414 as a team in game two.
Minnesota closed out game three 30-26 with Cassie Busse adding nine kills and three blocks.
Minnesota outhit North Carolina .294 to .154, while outblocking them 9.5 to 3. North Carolina is the third top-25 team the Gophers have defeated this season.
Busse led the way with 13 kills, five digs and five blocks while hitting an impressive .440 hitting percentage. Martin complemented her with 11 kills (.450) and five blocks. Vander Well chipped in with 38 assists and eight digs for the evening. Paula Gentil (Forteleaza Ceara’ Brazil) and Lisa Axel added 13 and 11 digs respectively.
North Carolina was led by Laura Greene with 10 kills and 13 digs.
In the first match of the night, Ball State defeated Oregon State 3-2 by scores of 27-30, 30-21, 28-30, 30-27, 15-7.
Katie Butts led Ball State with 25 kills and 16 digs. Megan McMillian paced Oregon State with 19 kills and 13 digs.
Minnesota will travel to the University of Denver Tournament Friday and Saturday, Sept. 20-21. The Gophers will take on a field of teams including, No. 23 Santa Clara, Maryland and host Denver.
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