Maryland volleyball fell to Purdue Wednesday night in four sets, by scores of 23-25, 15-25, 25-15, 26-28. A five-day layoff after a straight-sets defeat to Ohio State could not push the Terps on to an upset over The Boilermakers, a team receiving votes for top-25 recognition.
Maryland (10-15, 2-11) did not take advantage of six service errors from Purdue in the first set, falling 25-23. An early lead from Purdue was erased after the Terps went on a 6-1 run, but Purdue clamped down. Maryland led for much of the set before the Boilermakers retook the lead late at 23-22.
Gia Milana started stronger than she has in her past two matches against Ohio State. The freshman outside hitter led Maryland in the first set with seven kills, often coming from the back row. She went on to have a career-high 23 kills in the loss.
Purdue managed to keep distance from Maryland in the second set, taking it 25-15. The Terps stayed tight in the high single digits, but the Boilermakers’ 14-3 run closed out the second set. Maryland’s 10 attacking errors and .000 hitting percentage did not counter well with cleaner play from Purdue. The Boilermakers slowed Milana in the second set to only two kills.
Maryland’s dominant third set performance came on the back of clean volleyball. Only one error and a .556 hitting percentage led to the 25-16 win to extend the match with Purdue. Milana and Murray led the attack with six and four kills, respectively, while freshman setter Taylor Smith hit an ace for the Terps’ second of the night.
Purdue rallied from behind in the fourth set to win 28-26. After breaking two Maryland set points, the Boilermakers capitalized on their second match point to defeat the Terps. Twenty-two kills from Danielle Cuttino led Purdue in West Lafayette.
Three things to know:
- Gia Milana’s contribution from the back row led to her bounce-back game. The freshman has struggled the past two matches against Ohio State, with 24 total errors in both games compared to her 14 kills. Milana led the Terps with a career-high 23 kills and the outside hitter hit .241 against Purdue.
- Hailey Murray continued her recent success. The junior had back-to-back matches against Ohio State with nine kills. Against Purdue, she had 10 kills and tied for a team-high five blocks.
- Trailing the match 2-0, Maryland’s displayed its fight. The Terps folded in early matches this season when trailing 2-0, like they did against Iowa. The dominant third set performance showed a fire incredibly valuable for Maryland. Despite dropping the fourth set to Purdue, the Terps can take positives from the final two sets. Milana had a rebound performance, while Smith had a double-double with 42 assists and 11 digs.