No. 13 Penn State Women’s Volleyball Tops Illinois In Straight Sets

No.13 Penn State women’s volleyball (14-3, Big Ten 3-3) defeated Illinois (8-8, Big Ten 3-3) in a sweep (25-22, 25-22, 25-19) on Sunday at Rec Hall.

The Nittany Lions found their offensive stride after a tough loss to Ohio State Friday in a dominant win. Kashauna Williams, Alexa Markley, and Allie Holland led the charge with 33 kills on the day.

How It Happened

Within the game’s first five points, Penn State was up 3-2. The Illinois block was all over Penn State’s offense, keeping the game close. But, freshman Alexa Markley entered the rotation and immediately had an impact getting two kills.

This was a huge momentum shifter for the Nittany Lions, as they went on a 7-0 run and then led 14-9. The energy continued with an ace from Penn Stater Allie Holland, as the lead increased to 18-14.

The Illini tied it 20-20, but the Nittany Lions were able to side out and win the set 25-22.

Set two saw Illinois in complete control, as it took the 5-1 lead. The Nittany Lions then came roaring back to go up 9-8. The set stayed tight as the score was tied 14-14, but Penn State found a spark, once again, and went up 21-16 before ultimately taking the set 25-22

The final set saw a Nittany Lions 3-1 lead early. This carried over big time as Penn State extended its lead 12-8. The beginning of the third set also saw middle Katie Clark put down a massive kill.

Penn State remained in control up 16-10. Illinois had multiple challenges and timeouts toward the end of the set, but the Nittany Lions were able to finish strong with a score of 25-19.

Penn State then earned the win and is 3-3 in conference play.

Player Of The Game

Alexa Markley | Outside Hitter

Although she is not a starter, Markley is a major and consistent player from the bench. In this match against Illinois, as well as others throughout the season, Markley has been taken off the bench cold and has still been able to find success.

The true freshman had ten kills and a .350 hitting percentage Sunday afternoon, which adds to her already three kills that were counted on Friday against Ohio State, to make for a strong outing on the weekend.

What’s Next?

The Nittany Lions will continue their Big Ten slate at 8:30 p.m. Friday, October 14 against No. 3 Nebraska in Lincoln.

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About the Author

Mara McKeon

Mara is a senior staff writer majoring in English and public relations. She loves all things sports and anything that has peanut butter. You can usually find her obsessing over country music or Penn State wrestling and counting down the days until she gets to see Luke Combs in Beaver Stadium. Feel free to reach her on Twitter @MckeonMara, and for more formal affairs, her email is [email protected].

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