No. 13 Penn State Women’s Volleyball Falls To No. 10 Nebraska

Story posted October 9, 2021 in CommRadio, Sports by Zach Donaldson

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - No. 13 Penn State women’s volleyball (11-4, 4-1) fell to No. 10 Nebraska (10-3, 5-0) three sets to one on Friday night at Rec Hall.

The Nittany Lions fell in four sets (16-25, 25-22, 25-23, 25-17), and despite the strong home court advantage that the crowd brought, they couldn’t get the job done versus a talented Cornhuskers squad.

Nebraska was led by outside hitter Madi Kubik, as well as libero Lexi Rodriguez.

Kubik ended the night with 19 kills to go along with 12 digs and was able to find holes in the Penn State defense all night long. On defense for Nebraska, Rodriguez was all over the court for the Cornhuskers, registering 19 digs.

Penn State wasn’t able to slow them down all night long.

Add in Kayla Caffey, who had a big presence at the front of the net, especially in the fourth set. Caffey finished with seven blocks and erased multiple opportunities for points for the Nittany Lions up front.

“I’m disappointed we wasted another opportunity to play well,” head coach Russ Rose said. “I attribute that to the fact that Nebraska was far more physical and far better prepared to play tonight than we were.”

“I thought the fact that I had to take two or three starters out because they weren’t ready to play, or weren’t playing at a high enough level is a reflection of [how tonight went for us],” Rose said.

After an ugly first set to open up the match, Penn State bounced back in the second to knot the match at one apiece. However, after a deflating loss in the third set, the Nittany Lions appeared to lose all life and the Cornhuskers concluded the match with ease.

Throughout the entirety of the match, Nebraska did an excellent job exploiting the holes in Penn State’s defense, especially in the middle of the floor. It was something that the Nittany Lions couldn’t tighten up all night long. Nebraska just appeared more comfortable, prepared and put together as a team, even on the road.

Overall, it was a disappointing showing for thirteenth ranked Penn State.

Freshman Anjelina Starck was one of the lone bright spots for the Nittany Lions. Having not played much at all, let alone in any high stakes matches such as this one, she impressed with her playmaking and abilities.

“Getting to play in front of the crowd and the fan support was a moment I’ll never forget,” Starck said.

The crowd brought the energy, but the Nittany Lions weren’t able to match it.

Penn State will have an opportunity to bounce back on Saturday, Oct. 9 against the Northwestern Wildcats back in Rec Hall.

Zach Donaldson is a fourth-year majoring in broadcast journalism. To contact him, email