The 17th-ranked Minnesota volleyball team (14-3, 4-1) defeated Iowa (6-8, 1-4) in three sets by scores of 25-21, 25-16, 25-18 at Carver-Hawkeye Arena on Wednesday, Oct. 6.
Minnesota was led by Ashley Wittman (Shakopee, Minn.) who had 15 kills and 13 digs, while junior setter Stephanie Nucci (Gilbert, Ariz.) had 44 assists, five digs and two kills. Junior Ariana Filho (Monument, Colo.) finished with 10 kills and hit .500 (10-2-16) on the night.
Junior Jessica Granquist (Blaine, Minn.) also had a match-high 15 digs, while Katherine Harms hit .462 with eight kills and three digs.
Minnesota trailed 19-18 in the first set, before it scored seven of the last nine points to win the first set. With the score tied at 20, Tabi Love (Dauphin, Manitoba) and Tori Dixon (Burnsville, Minn.) delivered consecutive kills to make it 22-20. Wittman pushed it to 23-20, and after Iowa cut the lead to two points Wittman answered with consecutive kills to close out the set.
The Gophers limited Iowa to a -.029 hitting percentage in the second set, and hit .324. Minnesota also had 14 kills to eight the Hawkeyes in the set. Minnesota also limited Iowa to a .053 hitting percentage in the third set, and had 17 kills to nine.
For the match, the Gophers outhit Iowa .300 (51-18-110) to .056 (26-20-107) and had 51 kills to 26 for the Hawkeyes. The Gophers also outdug Iowa 56 to 39, despite being outblocked (7.0-to-4.0) and outaced (3.0-to-1.0).
Minnesota also moved to 33-1 in the first two sets of a match. The Gophers are 16-1 in the first set and 17-0 in the second set this year.
The Gophers will be back in action on Sunday, Oct. 10 at 1 p.m. when they travel to Evanston to face No. 24 Northwestern. That match can be seen at 6 p.m. on Oct. 10 on the Big Ten Network. It can also be heard live in the Gold Zone.