No. 14 Penn State Women’s Volleyball Sweeps Maryland 3-0
No. 14 Penn State women’s volleyball (20-8, 14-5 Big Ten) took care of business against Maryland (16-15, 6-13 Big Ten) in a sweep of the Terrapins in College Park on Wednesday.
The Nittany Lions got rolling early and never looked back. They recorded 14 aces over the course of the match and saw strong performances across the board, especially from the team’s seniors.
How It Happened
The early part of the first set saw both teams playing a bit of catch-up. Penn State jumped out to a 3-1 lead early on but found itself knotted at 10 shortly after. The Nittany Lions then went on to score seven out of the next eight points, including service aces from Maddy Bilinovic and Camryn Hannah, jumping out to a 17-11 lead.
The Terrapins tightened the gap, bringing them to within two of Penn State. After an attack error by the Terrapins and an ace by Jess Mruzik, Penn State prevented Maryland from getting too close. The Nittany Lions scored six out of the next eight points, with a kill by Zoe Weatherington ending the first set. The Nittany Lions took the opening set 25-20.
The second set found Penn State and Maryland tied at four, but after a 4-0 run by the Lions, including Hannah’s second ace of the match, the Terrapins were forced to call their first timeout. Momentum didn’t shift much following the break, as Penn State won the next two points, taking a 10-4 lead.
Maryland finally got back on the scoreboard but took another timeout with Penn State up 13-6. The Nittany Lions scored five out of the next six points, taking a commanding 18-7 lead as Mruzik recorded her second ace of the game in that span. The blue and white won seven of the next nine points, closing out the set with a kill by Hannah, and taking it by a score of 25- 9.
Penn State came out firing for the third set, jumping out to a 5-0 lead, causing the Terrapins to call a timeout early on. The Nittany Lions continued to shine as two more aces helped stretch the lead to 10-1.
After another timeout called by Maryland, the Terrapins finally found their stride, as the teams split the next eight points of the match. But the scoring for the red and black was short-lived as Penn State’s service game continued to dominate. The Nittany Lions’ 21st point of the set featured a 40-second rally that included an impressive diving save by Mruzik as Penn State closed in on the win. They went on to take the set 25-12 as a kill by Allie Holland finished off the 3-0 sweep of the match.
- Penn State had a whopping 14 aces over the course of the three-set match, compared to Maryland’s one. Senior Camryn Hannah led the way with five, while Maddy Bilinovic, Jess Mruzik, Gillian Grimes, and Jocelyn Nathan each contributed to the total.
- Hannah had an impressive night overall, recording a hitting percentage of .682. The team had a collective hitting percentage of .365, an improvement from its last game against Northwestern.
- The Nittany Lions went into College Park and handled business against a struggling Maryland team. The Terrapins had won just five out of their previous six matches, while Penn State entered the match riding a four-game winning streak.
Penn State will play its final match of the regular season against Ohio State at 7 p.m. on Friday, November 24, in Columbus.
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About the Author
The Nittany Lions participated in a max-out lifting session to mark the end of winter workouts.
Gaines was committed to the Nittany Lions for nearly a year.
Sophomore forward Tessa Janecke also earned CHA Player of the Year and Forward of the Year distinctions.