The No. 5 Nebraska volleyball team swept both the Ohio Bobcats and Wake Forest Demon Deacons at the Bob Devaney Sports Center on Friday, bringing the Huskers’ season record to 3-1.
Nebraska started its day by defeating Ohio 3-0 in the noon game.
The match started off evenly, but a service error by freshman defensive specialist Megan Miller left the two sides tied at eight in set one. Nebraska then went on an 8-2 run to take a 16-10 lead in the first set. The Bobcats were able to pull within three at 16-13, but Nebraska pulled away, winning the first set 25-17. Senior outside hitter Mikaela Foecke scored five kills in the set.
The Huskers made sure the second set wasn’t as close as the first. Foecke added three quick kills to help give Nebraska a 9-2 lead in second set, forcing Ohio to take a timeout. The Huskers did not miss a beat for the rest of the set, increasing their lead to as much as 11 before taking the second set 25-14.
Nebraska fell behind early in the third set, but battled back to complete the sweep. Trailing 4-7, the Huskers put together a 10-0 run to pull ahead 14-7. The run included four kills by Foecke. The Bobcats could not recover from the scoring run and the Huskers took the final set 25-17.
Foecke led all players in the Ohio match with 17 kills. Sophomore middle blocker Lauren Stivrins earned nine kills and scored four of Nebraska’s seven service aces in the match.
As a team, Nebraska scored 41 kills compared to Ohio’s 23, finishing with a hitting percentage of .349. The Huskers also totaled nine team blocks in the match.
In the nightcap, Nebraska swept Wake Forest 3-0. Nebraska never trailed during the one-sided match.
The Huskers set the tone early, winning the first set 25-14. Nebraska jumped out to a quick 5-1 lead in the first set before the Demon Deacons went on a 3-0 run to bring Wake Forest within one point of the lead. Nebraska then shut the door by going on a 13-4 run to go up 18-8 in the first set. During the run, Jazz Sweet and Stivrins each scored three kills for the Huskers. Nebraska won the first set on a service ace by Miller.
Miller’s set-ending ace was one of three ace serves for the Huskers in the first set. Freshman Nicklin Hames and senior Mikaela Foecke had the other two. The team also scored 14 kills compared to Wake Forest’s eight in set one. Stivrins finished the first set with a perfect hitting percentage with four kills on four attacks.
Nebraska kept its momentum rolling in the second set. The Huskers opened up the set on a 10-2 run. After that point, Wake Forest did not get within seven points of the lead, and Nebraska took the second set 25-11. The Huskers hit .296 as a team in the second set and only had one attack error. The Demon Deacons struggled and finished with a hitting percentage of -.143 in the set.
In set two, the Huskers received contributions from several players. Foecke and Sweet each scored two kills and Foecke added a service ace while Sweet notched two block assists in set two. Schwarzenbach laid down two kills in the second set as well as a solo block and two block assists. As a team, Nebraska scored six blocks in the second set. Stivrins, Hames and Sami Slaughter added a kill each in set two.
The third set echoed the first two with the Huskers opening up a 7-1 lead before the Demon Deacons called timeout. No amount of timeouts could stop the Huskers, though. Nebraska kept pouring it on and eventually won the third set 25-9.
Sweet led all players in the game with 11 kills. Stivrins had the second-most with eight. Foecke, Schwarzenbach and Slaughter all scored five kills. Foecke also scored half of the Huskers’ eight ace serves in the match. Hames had three and Miller notched one. During the match, the Huskers earned a hitting percentage of .341 and only had eight attack errors.
“I thought our serving dictated the whole match,” head coach John Cook said. “It really put Wake Forest on their heels.”
The Huskers are back in action on Saturday as they take on Santa Clara at 2 p.m. at the Devaney Center. The game will be aired on BTN Plus.