No. 11 Wichita State Sweeips UNI
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa - University of Northern Iowa seniors Ashten Stelken and Amy Sampson combined for 21 kills, but it was not enough as 11th-ranked Wichita State posted a 3-0 victory over UNI at the McLeod Center. Set scores were 25-21, 25-16, 25-19 in favor of WSU.
Sampson had 11 kills and Stelken added 10 for the Panthers, while libero Ellie Blankenship had a team-high 20 digs. Wichita State's Emily Stockman had a match-high 15 kills, while Lindsey Eckenrode added 10 for the Shockers. WSU hit .296 as a team, while UNI hit .181. The Shockers also had more blocks (5-4) and digs (75-59) than UNI.
Wichita State opened a 9-4 lead to start the match, forcing UNI head coach Bobbi Petersen to call timeout. The Shockers extended their lead to as many as seven, 20-13, before UNI made a big run. The Panthers got three kills from Stelken and one from Sampson, along with a service ace from Shannon Aschoff, during a 6-0 streak that saw UNI pull within 20-19. However, WSU stemmed the tide, and was able to score five of the final seven points to win the set, 25-21.
The score was even at seven in set two, before Wichita State used a big run to break the set open. The Shockers scored 10 of the next 12 points to move in front, 17-9, and never looked back. UNI did score four straight at one point, with kills from Bre Payton and Beth Discher, to get as close as 19-14, but the Shockers scored six of the final eight points to post the 25-16 victory.
Wichita State opened leads of 6-1, 9-3 and 14-6 to start the third set. But the Panthers pushed back, scoring five straight - including getting three consecutive service aces from Kayla Grunder - to get within 14-11. Wichita State held a 20-15 lead, but UNI scored three straight to pull within 20-18. But the Shockers ended on another strong run, getting five of the final six points to post the 25-19 win and earn the match victory.
With the win, WSU improved to a perfect 28-0 overall, 17-0 in the Missouri Valley Conference, while UNI fell to 22-6, 12-4 in The Valley. The Panthers travel to face intrastate rival Drake on Thur., Nov. 20, with first serve from the Knapp Center set for 7 pm.
Article courtesy of Northern Iowa athletics.