UNI Downs Loyola; Grabs No. 4 Seed for MVC Tourney
The University of Northern Iowa volleyball team closed out its regular season with a 3-1 win over the Loyola Ramblers in the McLeod Center.
UNI won by set scores 19-25, 27-25, 26-24, 25-18.
With its victory, UNI secured the No. 4 seed for the 2015 Missouri Valley Conference Tournament. The Panthers will take on the Illinois State Redbirds in the quarterfinals on Thursday at 5 p.m. in Springfield, Mo.
UNI (18-13 overall, 12-6 MVC) saw five players reach double figures in kills against Loyola (20-11 overall, 9-9 MVC). Kayla Haneline, Bri Weber and Amie Held each tallied 14 kills. Lindsey Schulz and Piper Thomas each added 10 kills. Held secured her 12th double-double of the season by also secured 16 digs against the Ramblers. Heather Hook registered 51 assists to lead the Panthers.
After splitting the first two sets, Loyola looked to be in control of the pivotal third set. The Ramblers led 20-14 and forced UNI head coach Bobbi Petersen to use her final timeout of the set. UNI responded from the break by scoring three straight points. UNI kept the run going at 9-3 and knotted the set at 23-23. The Panthers fended off a set point for the Ramblers at 24-23 when Haneline scored a kill. Haneline added another kill on the next point to give UNI a set point. Loyola's Maureen Carls committed an attack error and the Panthers claimed a 26-24 victory to take a 2-1 set lead.
The fourth set was knotted at 10-10 when UNI went on a 5-1 run to take a 15-11 lead. UNI extended its lead to six at 19-13. Loyola scored back-to-back points to cut UNI's lead to 20-16 forcing another Panther timeout. UNI came out of the timeout and scored five of the final seven points to secure the match victory, 25-18.