Junior Meghan Cumpston (Red Bluff, Calif.) had a season-high 16 kills as the Minnesota volleyball team (13-2, 3-1) defeated Michigan (8-5, 2-2) in three games by scores of 30 -26, 30-22, 30-25 on Saturday, Oct. 1 at the Sports Pavilion. With the victory, the Golden Gophers have now won 10 of their last 11 matches.
“I thought our left-sides did a great job tonight,” said Minnesota Head Coach Mike Hebert. “They were both very efficient tonight, with Meghan hitting .414 and Sarah hitting .303. I thought overall we played a good match against Michigan. To play a Big Ten weekend and hold Michigan State and Michigan to the low hitting percentages we did this weekend is a good accomplishment.”
Sophomore Sarah Florian (Holland, Ohio) also had 13 kills, eight digs and two service aces. Junior Jessy Jones (Naperville, Ill.) tallied nine kills and nine blocks on the night for Minnesota. Meredith Nelson (St. Croix Falls, Wis.) also had eight kills and five blocks, while junior Kelly Bowman (Maple Grove, Minn.) had eight kills, 25 assists, four digs and four blocks.
Senior Paula Gentil (Forteleaza Ceara’, Brazil) also had a match-high 20 digs and three assists on the night.
Minnesota jumped out to an early 8-5 lead in game one, but Michigan answered with an 8-2 run to move ahead 13-10 to force a Golden Gopher timeout. Out of the timeout, Minnesota rattled off four straight points to take a 14-13 lead to force a Wolverine timeout. The Golden Gophers moved ahead 15-13 after the timeout, but Michigan scored consecutive points to tie it at 15. The Wolverines move ahead 17-16 with two of the next three points.
Michigan took an 18-17 lead, before Minnesota rattled off four straight points to move ahead 21-18. The Golden Gophers scored three of the next four points to make it 24-19 to close out a 7-1 run. Michigan cut the lead to 25-22, but would get no close as Minnesota move scored four of the next six points to move it to game point at 29-24. The Wolverines cut fought off two game points to make it 29-26, but Bowman delivered a kill to give Minnesota game one 30-26.
Minnesota outhit Michigan .154 to .054 for the game, and had 16 kills to the Wolverines’ 11. Bowman and Florian led the way with four kills in the game for Minnesota.
In game two Minnesota jumped out to an 11-5 lead, before the Wolverines scored four of the next six points to cut it to 13-9. Minnesota answered with four of the next five points to make it 17-10 to force a Michigan timeout. Out of the timeout, the Wolverines scored three straight points to make it 17-13 to force a Golden Gopher timeout.
The two teams exchanged the next six points to make it 20-16, before Minnesota scored six of the next seven points to take a 26-17 lead. Michigan scored the next three points to make it 26-20, but the Golden Gophers answered right back to make it game point at 29 -20. The Wolverines fought off two game points, but Minnesota closed it out at 30-22.
Minnesota outhit Michigan .205 to .044 for the game, and had 17 kills to 11 for the Wolverines. Cumpston led the way with six kills in the game, while Gentil had 11 digs for the Golden Gophers.
The Golden Gophers jumped out to a 10-7 lead in game three, before Michigan scored three of four points to cut it to 11-10. Minnesota responded with four of the next five points to push the lead back out to 15-11. Michigan rattled off six straight points to claim a 17-15 lead. Minnesota answered with four straight points, three coming on Cumpston kills and one coming on a Jones solo block, to make it 19-17.
Michigan interrupted the Minnesota run with a point to make it 19-18, but Cumpston followed with back-to-back kills to make it 21-18. Jones had a kill and a block sandwiched around a Cumpston kill to make it 24-19 to finish off 9-2 run for the Golden Gophers. Michigan cut the lead to 25-22, but the Golden Gophers answered with two straight points to push it to 27-22.
The two teams exchanged the next four points to make it game point at 29-24. After Michigan fought off game point to make it 29-25, Cumpston fittingly ended the match with a kill. She finished game three with seven kills.
Minnesota outhit Michigan .246 to .140 on the night, and had 56 kills to 39 for the Wolverines. The Golden Gophers also outdug Michigan 53 to 42, and outblocked the Wolverines 14.0-to-11.0.
Michigan was led by Lyndsay Miller who had 13 kills and six blocks. Danielle Pflum also had 10 kills, while Stesha Selsky had 12 digs. Setter Mara Martin had 31 assists, five digs and four blocks on the night for the Wolverines.
Minnesota will play a midweek conference match against Iowa on Wednesday, Oct. 5 at 7 p.m. The Golden Gophers will then travel to