Minnesota (16-7, 9-2) extended its Big Ten winning streak to nine matches, as it defeated Iowa (5-16, 0-11) in three games by scores of 30-18, 30-23, 31-29. The Golden Gophers nine-match winning streak is the second-longest conference winning streak in school history.
With the victory the Golden Gophers moved to sole possession of first place in the Big Ten at 9-2, half-a-match ahead of both Illinois and Wisconsin who are 8-2.
Iowa jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the first game, but Minnesota went on a 14-1 run to go up 14-3. The Hawkeyes would trail by no less then eight points the rest of the game, as the Golden Gophers moved on to win game one 30-18. Minnesota outhit Iowa .342 to .050 in the game. Trish Bratford (Reseda, Calif.) paced the attack with five kills, while Ath ena Mallakis (Simi Valley, Calif.) had four blocks in the game.
In game two Minnesota jumped to a 16-13 lead. The Golden Gophers reeled off five of the next five points to extend the lead to 21-15. Iowa cut the lead to 22-19, but would get no closer the rest of the game as Minnesota moved on to a 30-23 game two victory. The Golden Gophers outhit the Hawkeyes .340 to .191 in the game. Bratford had a game-high six kills for Minnesota.
The Golden Gophers jumped out to a 21-19 lead in game three, but Iowa tied the score at 23. After the Hawkeyes tied the game at 25, Eri n Martin (Ames, Iowa) had a kill to put the score at 26-25. The Golden Gophers rattled off three straight points to go up 29-25, but Iowa tied the score at 29. Martin registered a kill to make it 30-29, and Eri n Lorenzen (Pipestone, Minn.) put down the final kill of the match to give Minnesota the 31-29 game-three victory.
Martin led the attack with 16 kills on the night, along with two service aces. Bratford also had double-figure kills with 14. Mallakis tallied a career-high eight kills and eight blocks in her first career start at Minnesota. Lorenzen tallied nine kills for the match. Pau la Gentil (Forteleaza Ceara', Brazil) had a match high 17 digs, while Mar ci Peniata (Plymouth, Minn.) had 10 on the night. Junior setter Lin dsey Taatjes (Prinsburg, Minn.) had 46 assists and 13 digs in the match.
Minnesota outhit Iowa .301 to .110 on the night. The Golden Gophers also outblocked the Hawkeyes 9.0 to 3.0, and had 59 kills to Iowa's 38.
Laura Simpson led Iowa with 12 kills and nine digs.
Minnesota will host No. 20 Wisconsin on Friday, Oct. 31 at 7 p.m. That match will be telecast by Fox Sport