Up 1-0 in the match, Maryland had the opportunity to take a commanding 2-0 lead in a match they desperately needed to win. Holding a 20-16 advantage in the set, middle blocker Laila Ricks delivered a powerful kill that not only energized the entire Maryland roster, but called for a standing ovation from the entire crowd.
Middle blocker Hannah Thompson and outside hitter Paula Neciporuka helped the Terps turn this kill into a 5-1 run to give them that crucial 2-0 match lead.
Maryland has now earned its second win of conference play in the three set win over Indiana (25-14, 25-17, 26-24). The Terps improve to 14-4 on the season as head coach Adam Hughes secured his 50th win at Maryland, while the Hoosiers fall to 8-10.
The win officially ends the Terps four game losing streak and hopefully be used as a stepping stone for next weekend’s matchup against Michigan and Michigan State.
As she has done so many times before, middle blocker Ranielle Jones blocked Indiana’s first attack of the match. Jones would tally two more blocks and one kill as the Terps jumped to an early 9-1 lead.
After a 3-0 response from the Hoosiers, a free ball found its way to Ricks who poked the ball over the Indiana blockers and into an open space in the defense, making Maryland the first team to reach double digits.
From there the teams traded kills, until multiple Maryland errors assisted the Hoosiers in a 4-0 run, slicing the lead to three. Unfortunately for Indiana, the Terps had an answer in the form of two Sam Csire kills and two Jones blocks, pushing the lead back to seven.
The duo wasn’t done there, combining for four kills and a block to give Maryland an eleven point lead and bring them three points within a set one win. The deficit proved to be too big for the Hoosiers to overcome, as Csire ended the 25-14 first win with an emphatic kill.
Maryland gave Indiana nightmares at the net in this first set, recording 14 kills, seven blocks, and a .355 hitting percentage, while holding the Hoosiers to a -.027 hitting percentage.
Indiana found themselves up 3-1 early in the second, but this lead was short-lived as the Terps ripped off a 4-0 run. After a lone Hoosier kill, Maryland got right back at, putting together a 5-1 run.
The Hoosiers were able to cut the lead to two, but another Jones kill and three consecutive Indiana errors put the Terps up six, their biggest lead of the set. Then, Indiana came up with a 3-0 run that was quickly ended by back to back kills by Jones.
The teams continued to exchange blows, until a 5-1 Terrapin run carried them to the finish, winning the second set 25-17.
The Hoosiers got on the board first with a kill by outside hitter Breana Edwards. However, the Terps countered with a 3-0 run, highlighted by a Csire kill and two Jones blocks.
Following a 4-1 Indiana run, the Terps exploded for a 7-1 run that included kills by Neciporuka and Thompson. The Hoosiers weren’t going to let Maryland win that easily, however, responding with a 4-0 run to bring them within one.
Then, a 4-0 run gave Indiana its first lead of the set since being up 5-4. Down 17-16, Maryland pieced together a 5-0 run to give them a decisive 21-17 lead.
The Hoosiers refused to give up, rallying for a 5-0 run to gain a 23-22 advantage. With Indiana holding a 24-23 lead, the Terps flipped the script as Csire, Jones, and Neciporuka came together for three critical kills to complete the sweep.
Three things to know
1. Jones makes case for player of the week. Rainelle Jones has been spectacular this weekend, netting 3.13 kills per set, 2.5 blocks set, and a .458 hitting percentage over the two-game span. Her impressive play should warrant heavy consideration for Big Ten player of the Week.
2. Dowler returns to MVP form. Sydney Dowler took home two non conference tournament MVPs this season and showed the Hoosiers why she earned them. Dowler was all over the place tonight, lunging for digs and setting up her teammates with beautiful sets. She finished the night with 39 assists, 11 digs, three blocks, and one service ace.
3. Csire and the Terps get back on track. Maryland has finally ended its four game losing streak with a convincing three set victory over Indiana. Csire and the Terps offensive had a massive bounce back game in this one, recording 44 kills and a .295 hitting percentage. Csire recorded nine kills and a .156 hitting percentage.