MINNEAPOLIS — The Minnesota volleyball team achieved a sweep (25-23, 25-17, 25-9) over the Rutgers Scarlet Knights on Friday at Maturi Pavilion. The team recorded a total of 10 blocks during the match.
“I thought we dealt with some pretty tough service pressure in the first set and some errors early on in the second set,” said head coach Keegan Cook. “I thought we did a good job on serve receive and dealt with hitting against a big block all night. Melani did a great job distributing the ball to our middles and spreading it around.”
With this victory, Minnesota improved its overall record to 9-8 and its Big Ten record to 5-4, securing its third consecutive win.
Taylor Landfair led the Golden Gophers with nine kills, while Mckenna Wucherer contributed eight kills and 10 digs. Melani Shaffmaster showcased her versatility with five kills, 24 assists, and six digs. Defensively, Kylie Murr recorded 14 digs, while Arica Davis contributed seven blocks.
As a team, Minnesota achieved a .253 hitting percentage with 39 kills, 49 digs, 10 blocks, and five aces. Rutgers, on the other hand, had a .046 hitting percentage with 27 kills, 37 digs, nine blocks, and two aces. Alissa Kinkela led Rutgers with eight kills, seven digs, and five blocks.
How It Happened
SET 1 | The Golden Gophers won a closely contested first set with a score of 25-23. Minnesota took the lead for good at 20-19, and they maintained their advantage for the remainder of the set.
SET 2 | Building on their previous set victory, Minnesota secured a 25-17 win in the second set. The team displayed a strong attacking performance, achieving a .320 attack percentage and recording 11 kills. The Golden Gophers finished the set with a strong lead and three of their five aces in the match.
SET 3 | Minnesota concluded the match with a dominant third set, winning 25-9. The team established an early lead and maintained it throughout the set, finishing with a 16-point advantage. Defensively, Minnesota’s front row recorded six blocks and capitalized on 10 attacking errors by the Scarlet Knights.
» The Gophers now hold an 11-3 all-time series advantage against Rutgers.
» Julia Hanson achieved a career-high three aces in the match.
» Arica Davis recorded a team-high seven blocks, matching her season-high.
» Minnesota’s front row excelled defensively, recording 10 blocks in the match.
» Minnesota never trailed in the third set, winning 25-9.
» Taylor Landfair achieved a match-high nine kills for Minnesota, hitting .368 for the night, marking her third time in the last four games with a hitting percentage over .300.
» Kylie Murr achieved a match-high 14 digs, extending her streak of double-digit dig matches to 17.
» Melani Shaffmaster provided a match-high 24 assists for Minnesota’s attackers.
Minnesota (9-8, 5-4 Big Ten) will host Michigan State (13-7, 5-4 Big Ten) on Sunday at 2 p.m. on B1G+.