Minnesota makes quick work of Iowa

Minnesota is back to its winning ways. Just four days after a disappointing loss to No. 1 Penn State, the Gophers volleyball team swept Iowa at home Wednesday, improving to 6-1 in conference play. Teams of the Big Ten have noticed the HawkeyesâÄô improvement this year, but Minnesota didnâÄôt seem to be phased, committing just eight hitting errors in a three-set sweep of Iowa, 25-11, 25-17, 25-23. âÄúI think weâÄôve come a long way from last year, having made just eight errors tonight,âÄù sophomore outside hitter Brook Dieter said. âÄúWeâÄôve been working on our efficiency this year, and it showed in this match.âÄù The Gophers held the Hawkeyes to a -.056 hit percentage in the first set, blocking Iowa four times on the way to a first-set route. The Hawkeyes had problems on their side of the net as well, hitting into the net early and often to collect nine hitting errors in the set. Senior middle blocker Kelly Schmidt led the Gophers with five kills on six swings, while Dieter added a pair of kills and two solo blocks. Sophomore defensive specialist Hailey Cowles led MinnesotaâÄôs back row with seven digs. âÄúI think the team had a little bit of a chip on our shoulder from last Saturday,âÄù Schmidt said. âÄúWe talked beforehand about how we wanted to control the match and show our strengths. We did a good job of that early.âÄù Schmidt added five more kills in the second set to continue her impressive play, while Dieter added four. But Iowa began to hit better as well, connecting on cross-court shots to hit .216 in the second set. âÄúI donâÄôt think Iowa did anything different than just putting the ball in the court,âÄù Hebert said. Minnesota couldnâÄôt be slowed down however, as the Gophers hit at a .356 clip and served a pair of aces to win the set and go up 2-0 in the match. Dieter led Minnesota through the third set, collecting seven kills to keep the GophersâÄô head above water despite struggling after mixing up the lineup mid-set, giving the younger players some court time late in the match. At 24-23, Iowa threatened to tie the game for just the third time all match, but Cowles put away an attack from the back row, killing the ball down the line to ensure a Minnesota victory. âÄúVolleyball is a really fragile kind of a team game. If you start replacing individuals, sometimes things like that happen,âÄù Hebert said. âÄúI would have liked to see some better passing, but it was also great to get some people some experience.âÄù Dieter finished the match with a match-high 16 kills and a .421 hit percentage, while Schmidt added a career-high 13 kills on 16 swings. Neither player committed a hitting error. Sophomore outside hitter Lauren Gibbemeyer finished with seven kills and three blocks. âÄúThe fact that a lot of us had quite a few kills means that (senior setter) Rachel Hartmann was distributing the ball well,âÄù Dieter said. âÄúShe opened up the hitting lanes well for us tonight.âÄù Minnesota outhit Iowa .362-.133, and out-blocked the Hawkeyes 7-2. Iowa never led in the match, and tied it just twice. The Gophers played everyone but senior outside hitter Kyla Roehrig, who rested due to soreness. Minnesota is back to its winning ways. Just four days after a disappointing loss to No. 1 Penn State, the Gophers volleyball team swept Iowa at home Wednesday, improving to 6-1 in conference play. Teams of the Big Ten have noticed the HawkeyesâÄô improvement this year, but Minnesota didnâÄôt seem to be phased, committing just eight hitting errors in a three-set sweep of Iowa, 25-11, 25-17, 25-23. âÄúI think weâÄôve come a long way from last year, having made just eight errors tonight,âÄù sophomore outside hitter Brook Dieter said. âÄúWeâÄôve been working on our efficiency this year, and it showed in this match.âÄù The Gophers held the Hawkeyes to a -.056 hit percentage in the first set, blocking Iowa four times on the way to a first-set route. The Hawkeyes had problems on their side of the net as well, hitting into the net early and often to collect nine hitting errors in the set. Senior middle blocker Kelly Schmidt led the Gophers with five kills on six swings, while Dieter added a pair of kills and two solo blocks. Sophomore defensive specialist Hailey Cowles led MinnesotaâÄôs back row with seven digs. âÄúI think the team had a little bit of a chip on our shoulder from last Saturday,âÄù Schmidt said. âÄúWe talked beforehand about how we wanted to control the match and show our strengths. We did a good job of that early.âÄù Schmidt added five more kills in the second set to continue her impressive play, while Dieter added four. But Iowa began to hit better as well, connecting on cross-court shots to hit .216 in the second set. âÄúI donâÄôt think Iowa did anything different than just putting the ball in the court,âÄù Hebert said. Minnesota couldnâÄôt be slowed down however, as the Gophers hit at a .356 clip and served a pair of aces to win the set and go up 2-0 in the match. Dieter led Minnesota through the third set, collecting seven kills to keep the GophersâÄô head above water despite struggling after mixing up the lineup mid-set, giving the younger players some court time late in the match. At 24-23, Iowa threatened to tie the game for just the third time all match, but Cowles put away an attack from the back row, killing the ball down the line to ensure a Minnesota victory. âÄúVolleyball is a really fragile kind of a team game. If you start replacing individuals, sometimes things like that happen,âÄù Hebert said. âÄúI would have liked to see some better passing, but it was also great to get some people some experience.âÄù Dieter finished the match with a match-high 16 kills and a .421 hit percentage, while Schmidt added a career-high 13 kills on 16 swings. Neither player committed a hitting error. Sophomore outside hitter Lauren Gibbemeyer finished with seven kills and three blocks. âÄúThe fact that a lot of us had quite a few kills means that (senior setter) Rachel Hartmann was distributing the ball well,âÄù Dieter said. âÄúShe opened up the hitting lanes well for us tonight.âÄù Minnesota outhit Iowa .362-.133, and out-blocked the Hawkeyes 7-2. Iowa never led in the match, and tied it just twice. The Gophers played everyone but senior outside hitter Kyla Roehrig, who rested due to soreness.