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Maryland volleyball splits weekend series on the road

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The Terps won their second consecutive Big Ten match at Iowa Friday night, but then failed to put a scare in the Nebraska Cornhuskers on Halloween night.

Jake Spitz

Iowa

For the first time in a long time, Maryland volleyball headed into a match coming off a victory. The team did not let the feeling slip away. The Terrapins defeated the Iowa Hawkeyes, who were winless in Big Ten play coming into the match.

It was a balanced effort for the visitors, as three players had double digit kills. Adreene` Elliott led the way with 16, Ashlyn MacGregor tallied 14 and freshman Liz Twilley finished the match with 14 as well. Three Terrapins also recorded double digit digs in the match. Freshman libero Kelsey Wicinski had 27, Amy Dion added 12 and Dani Bozzini had 10.

The beginning of the match did not seem promising for the Terps. They trailed 7-2 early, and the Hawkeyes were able to control most of the first set. Maryland was able to close the gap to 20-17, but Iowa closed out the set on a 5-2 run. The Hawkeyes were feeling good and had their sights set on their first conference victory.

The second set was a close affair early, but the Terrapins were able to distance themselves later on. Hailey Murray posted a kill to give her team a 16-11 lead. The lead grew to 18-12 when MacGregor powered home a kill on one of Whitney Craigo's 50 assists.

Despite a late push from Iowa that closed the gap to two points, Maryland was able to hold on and win the set 25-20.

Similar to the first set, the home team quickly jumped out to a lead when the third set began. This time, though, the Terps were able to fight back. Maryland trailed 6-2, but came back to take an 8-7 lead on an Elliott kill.

The Terps took a 9-8 lead shortly after and never looked back. They controlled the set from there, fending off a late Iowa push that tied the score at 22. From that point on, Maryland scored three straight points to win the set, 25-22.

Maryland fell behind again early in the fourth set. They were trailing 10-7 when an Angel Gaskin kill sparked a 5-0 run to give the team a 12-10 advantage.

Once again Iowa rallied late, but Elliott answered for the visitors. Her kill put the Terps at match point, but Iowa responded with a point of their own. At second match point it was Elliott again as she sealed the Terrapins' first victory over Iowa in program history.

Nebraska

The No. 9 Nebraska Cornhuskers had their way with the Terrapins on Halloween night. No Terp reached double digits in kills as they lost the match in straight sets (25-9, 25-11 and 25-12).

Twilley led the team in kills with seven, but committed nine errors and hit -.067 percent.

The home team came out firing on all cylinders as they started the match with a 17-7 lead. They later went on to close the set on a 6-0 run and won by a score of 25-9.

The second set had a similar tune to it as the Terrapins fell behind early and could not find their way back. Nebraska's lead grew to 20-9 late in the set. The Cornhuskers would go on to finish the set with a 25-11 victory.

Maryland was able to keep Nebraska within reach early in the third set, but could not keep pace as the match continued. A Twilley kill made the score 5-4 before the home team used a 4-0 run to take a 9-4 lead that would never be relinquished.

Nebraska went on to score eight of the final ten points of the match and cruised to a 25-12 victory.

Thoughts

It was good to see Maryland take advantage of an opponent that they were capable of beating Friday night. The Nebraska match went how it should have, as the Cornhuskers rolled to an easy victory.

The Terrapins will return home to face Penn State on Thursday night under the bright lights of Xfinity's main court.