Rutgers swept by No. 10 Michigan State after dropping match to Michigan
Although the Rutgers volleyball team collected one more pair of losses to Michigan and No. 10 Michigan State, the Scarlet Knights had some positives this weekend. They collected their first Big Ten set win at home since Nov. 18th, 2015 when the team played against Purdue.
The weekend was highlighted by season highs in the Big Ten, as the team secured 41 kills, 46 digs and 38 assists against Michigan. Rutgers won the second set of the night but was still outplayed by the Wolverines in set scores of 25-12, 25-22, 25-18 and 25-16.
Sophomore middle blocker Stasa Miljevic and junior outside hitter Sahbria McLetchie led the Knights’ kills with ten apiece. Miljevic’s ten kills were a career high, contributing to a .429 hitting percentage. Meanwhile, sophomore setter Megan Sharkey continued her dominance in assists for Rutgers, collecting a Big Ten career-high of 36.
Sophomore middle blocker Jasmine Stackhouse logged a solo block out of four total stuffs to help out on the defensive side in addition to sophomore libero Karysa Swackenberg with the highest dig mark of the team with 15.
Also having a great performance was freshman outside hitter Yana Kamshilina posting a .333 attack percentage and eight kills. That is the highest it has been since the 11 kills she hit during the game against Middle Tennessee State back in September.
The Knights continued their momentum from the Michigan match while facing off against Michigan State. Although Rutgers lost in straight sets, it reached its highest Big Ten attacking percentage of .194 while playing the No. 10 Spartans, the highest ranked team the Knights have played this season.
Coming off of a strong last match McLetchie and Miljevic led the team yet again in kills with eight each. Miljevic’s consistent performance tied her .429 attack percentage with only two errors on 14 total swings. She has now taken over the lead for Rutgers’ attack percentage of .273 in Big Ten play.
Other notable performances this weekend were Sharkey’s assists and Cieslik’s service aces. Sharkey extended her career assists in the past two games to 1,068, which puts her 14 away from the Knights’ all-time leaderboard in assists with No. 10 Jennifer DelGais’s 1,082.
On the other hand, Cieslik collected four total service aces, two from each match, over the course of the weekend to put her at 29 this season. Among all servers in the Big Ten, she has the second highest number of aces for this season.
Next on Rutgers’ Big Ten schedule, the team will travel to Bloomington and West Lafayette, Indiana to face off against Indiana and Purdue. The Knights' best chance for a win will be against Indiana, as both teams have yet to win a Big Ten match.
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