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Monday, April 15
The Indiana Daily Student

sports volleyball

IU volleyball suffers another disappointing setback

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The IU volleyball team took one from Purdue in West Lafayette on Sept. 30.

Purdue got its revenge in University Gym Wednesday.

The Boilermakers (12-12, 4-9) dominated the final three sets to defeat the Hoosiers (14-13, 3-10) and claim the Monon Spike in 2009.

Purdue won by scores of 20-25, 25-23, 25-20 and 25-19.

Purdue coach Dave Shondell called the win “one of the biggest wins we’ve had in the seven years I’ve been at Purdue.”

“Considering that we’ve had a hard time getting wins this season and our mentality has been really damaged, it was a huge win,” Shondell said.

IU has had almost an equally tough time winning matches, something coach Sherry Dunbar said takes its toll, rivalry game or no.

“Every one of them is tough when you lose,” Dunbar said. “I don’t like to lose.”

Perhaps the most astonishing statistic of the contest was the Boilermakers’ 17.5 total team blocks to the Hoosiers’ 6.0. Purdue middle blockers Kristen Arthurs and Anna Drewry each had eight block assists.

Shondell said he had envisioned his team as capable of dominating the net to that degree.

“At the beginning of the season, I thought we could be that kind of a team,” he said. “It was great. We outblocked them 17.5 to six, and IU’s a good blocking team, so that was a good win.”

The eye-opening number for the Hoosiers was 12 service aces. Dunbar said she was pleased with IU’s serving and credited Purdue for figuring out how to receive down the stretch.

“The biggest thing, I thought we served really aggressive, and I thought that helped us a lot,” Dunbar said. “I just thought they stepped up towards the end and started passing better.”

The serving was apparent from the start.  

Freshman setter Whitney Granado opened the match with an ace, and the Hoosiers continued to dominate from the service line in the first set.

Freshman outside hitter Jordan Haverly posted two aces, and junior middle blocker Ashley Benson and freshman defensive specialist Laura Matula each added one.

Benson, who totaled four aces on the evening, said improving her serving had been a high priority going into the match.

“I’ve been working on making my serves tougher and more consistent,” Benson said. “I changed my serve up a little bit and it paid off today.”

IU also controlled the net in the first frame with six block assists to the Boilermakers’ two, and three Hoosiers posted three kills each to win the set 25-20.

Haverly and Matula continued to produce at the line in the match’s second contest, each recording another ace.

However, attack errors plagued the Hoosiers in the second set as they committed eight to Purdue’s two.

Outside hitter Ariel Turner paced the Boilermakers with four kills in the frame and Purdue held off a late IU surge to even the match at one set apiece.

The two teams exchanged runs early in the third set before going back-and-forth through a 19-19 knot.

Consecutive errors by Haverly and junior middle blocker Taylor Wittmer allowed the Boilermakers to open a 22-19 advantage, allowing them to seal the set 25-23.

The Boilermakers took total control in the fourth set. The Hoosiers staged multiple-point comebacks thanks to Benson’s three aces, but Purdue built too strong a lead and sealed the big road victory.

“Purdue is one of our rivals and, you know, we were hoping to come out with a win,” Benson said, “but they played their hearts out, we weren’t having a good game, and they ended up winning today. There’s nothing that you can say about it.”

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