From UNI Athletics Media Relations
The UNI Panther volleyball team was defeated by one of the nation’s top teams on Friday, but recovered to win a pair of matches on Saturday.
The Panthers took on the #4 Texas Longhorns in Gregory Gym Friday night. The Panthers fell 19-25, 25-22, 23-25, 19-25 in the opening match of the season.
Karlie Taylor responded after a slow opening set to finish with 19 kills and 19 digs to lead the Panthers in both categories. Emily Holterhaus led the Panthers with a .243 hitting percentage, recording 11 kills on 37 total attacks.
Rachel Koop finished with 38 assists and 8 digs on the night while Abbi Staack recorded 19 digs after starting at libero. Taylor Hedges finished with 10 digs and Baylee Petersen finished the contest with 9.
Saturday morning, the Panthers took on the Liberty Flames. UNI came out on top, 25-23, 24-26, 25-18. The Panthers trailed the Flames by five in the final set before going on a 5-0 run, then closing on a 4-0 run to secure the first win of the season.
Taylor again led the Panthers in scoring, recording 23 kills, two solo blocks, and a block assists for 26.5 total points. Kate Busswitz recorded a .389 hitting percentage with 19 kills on 36 total attacks.
UNI capped the weekend by defeating the Texas State Bobcats Saturday night, 25-23, 25-19, 25-13.
On an impressive offensive night, three Panthers finished with double digit kills, three Panthers finished with a .500 hitting percentage or better and two Panthers finished with double digit dig totals.
Busswitz led UNI with 13 kills on 22 total attacks for a team high .545 hitting percentage. Inga Rotto played her breakout match, recording a career-high 12 kills.
Koop finished with 23 assists in the three set sweep and added 12 digs for her first double-double of the season.