UNI hands volleyball first loss of the season

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    Sept. 25, 2009

    By Shalae Patrick

    Box Score

    CEDAR FALLS, Iowa - The Northern Iowa volleyball team handed Southern Illinois its first loss of the season, 3-1 (25-23, 11-25, 11-25, 20-25), Friday night in Missouri Valley Conference play at the McCleod Center.

    The Salukis (11-1, 1-1 MVC) came out strong in the first set with the 25-23 win, but let their guard down as the Panthers (12-2, 3-0 MVC) powered back with two-straight 11-25 wins, followed by a 20-25 victory to put the match away and hand undefeated SIU its first loss of the season. The win pushed UNI's win streak to nine.

    UNI put four players in double-digit kills, and posted two double-doubles, holding SIU to a .078 hitting percentage and just 32 kills.

    Alicia Johnson led the Salukis with seven kills and 14 digs, while Jennifer Berwanger added six kills and 21 digs.

    Setter Rachael Brown led the offense with 28 assists and libero Lauren Blumhorst added 16 digs for the defense.

    Southern, the ninth-ranked blocking team in the country, recorded just 4.0 team blocks in the match.

    Shannon Ashoff led the Panthers with 15 kills. Amy Braun and Michelle Burow added 12 each. Braun added 11 digs and three block assists. Bre Payton led UNI's offense with 47 assists and 14 digs, while Ellie Blankenship recorded a match-high 31 digs.

    The Salukis wrap up weekend play when they travel to Peoria, Ill., Saturday to take on Bradley at 7 p.m.



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