The No. 10 Nebraska volleyball team (11-3, 5-0 Big Ten) completes its East Coast swing this Sunday, Oct. 10, visiting Rutgers (8-8, 0-5). First serve is set for Noon CT at the Rutgers Athletic Center in Piscataway, N.J. The match will be streamed on BTN+ with Pat Boyle on the call.
This week’s action will be carried on Huskers Radio Network with the NU radio team of John Baylor and Lauren Cook West. Baylor is in his 28th season handling play-by-play duties for the Husker volleyball program, and West, a former All-America setter at NU, will provide color commentary for the sixth straight year.
Huskers Radio Network will carry the matches on HRN radio affiliates, including 107.3 FM in Lincoln and AM 590 in Omaha. A live audio stream will be available at Huskers.com and on the Huskers app.
• With its Friday night win over No. 13 Penn State, Nebraska moved into sole possession of first place in the Big Ten standings. NU is the only remaining unbeaten team at 5-0 in conference play.
• The Huskers lead the way with a .296 attack percentage, 1.88 service aces per set and 16.95 digs per set in Big Ten matches.
• NU had season highs for kills (62), assists (57) and digs (76) at Penn State.
• Madi Kubik paced NU with a season-high-tying 19 kills, and Ally Batenhorst finished with a season-best 15 kills on .375 hitting. Keonilei Akana also registered her third straight double-figure dig performance and fourth such effort in the last five matches, and she added a season-high four aces.
• Nicklin Hames played her 100th career match and collected her team-leading eighth double-double.
• Five of Nebraska’s top seven team hitting performances have come in Big Ten matches over the last three weeks.
• NU has gone at least 3-0 to start Big Ten play nine consecutive years. The Huskers’ fifth straight win on Friday marked the fifth time they have gone at least 5-0 since 2013.
• The Huskers returned to the top 10 in the AVCA national poll this week, coming in 10th.
• Nebraska previously held a streak of 60 straight weeks in the top 10 of the AVCA poll before sitting at 12th in the Sept. 20 and Sept. 27 releases. It was the only time the Huskers had ranked outside the top 10 since Sept. 18, 2017, when they were 14th.
• NU opened 2021 with a six-match win streak, then dropped three straight to No. 20 Utah (Sept. 11), No. 16 Stanford (Sept. 14) and No. 5 Louisville (Sept. 18) before rebounding with five wins.
• The Huskers played four straight top-20 opponents in an 11-day span last month with No. 19 Creighton (Sept. 8), No. 20 Utah (Sept. 11), No. 16 Stanford (Sept. 14) and No. 5 Louisville (Sept. 18).
• Five of NU’s six freshmen have seen the court this year.
Scouting the Rutgers Scarlet Knights
Rutgers was tagged with its sixth straight defeat Friday in a 3-1 home loss to Indiana, dropping to 8-8 (0-5 Big Ten). Kamila Cieslik had a team-leading 12 kills and 10 digs while hitting .303, and Anastasiia Maksimova had 11 more kills. Beka Kojadinovic was just shy of a double-double at nine kills and 19 digs. Shea McNamara registered a team-best five blocks. The Scarlet Knights seek their first win since Sept. 17 on Sunday.
Rutgers finished 6-14 in Big Ten play last spring, and Inna Balyko was a first-team All-Big Ten honoree. Caitlin Schweihofer is in her second year at Rutgers with a record of 14-22 and a career mark of 87-130 over eight seasons as a head coach.
Noting the Series: vs. Rutgers
The Huskers lead the all-time series with Rutgers 10-1 and have triumphed in 10 straight against the Scarlet Knights. All 10 of those matches were as members of the Big Ten, and all but one were sweeps. NU is 6-0 when facing Rutgers on the road.
The most recent meeting was Feb. 13, 2021 at RU’s College Avenue Gym, where the Huskers won 3-1 after dropping the opening set. Lauren Stivrins had 15 kills on .583 hitting with 11 blocks in the win, and Lexi Sun turned in 15 kills, 11 digs and five stops. Madi Kubik added 14 kills, 16 digs and three blocks.
Nebraska begins a two-match home stand on Wednesday, Oct. 13, welcoming Indiana to the Devaney Center. First serve is set for 8 p.m., and the match will be televised on ESPNU and streamed on WatchESPN. John Baylor and Lauren Cook West will also have the radio call on Huskers Radio Network.
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