NORMAL, Ill. — Northern Iowa avenged its only Missouri Valley Conference volleyball loss Friday by pulling out a pair of extended set victories and then burying Illinois State in set four of a 22-25, 26-24, 28-26, 25-12 win.
It was the 504th victory for Bobbi Petersen as UNI’s head coach, moving her past Iradge Ahrabi-Fard atop the program’s all-time wins list.
UNI (19-9, 13-1) trailed 22-20 in the second set when a Karlie Taylor kill and service ace tied it at 22-22. It was tied twice more before Kate Busswitz put down back-to-back kills to give the Panthers the 26-24 win.
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UNI had to rally again in set three. The Redbirds (14-11, 7-6) led 14-9 and fought off Panther rallies until three straight Busswitz kills helped UNI draw even at 19-19. The Panthers then went up 23-20, only to see Illinois State battle back. UNI finally won it 28-26 on another Busswitz kill.
The fourth set was all Panthers. UNI jumped in front 7-0 and never let the Redbirds get any closer than nine points.
Taylor led the Panthers with 22 kills, Kaylissa Arndorfer had 12 and Busswitz finishd with 11. Rachel Koop put up 49 assists and had two of UNI’s six service aces. Defensively, Taylor and Abbi Staack had 23 digs apiece while Taylor was in on five blocks and Arndorfer and Emily Holterhaus four each.