Despite taking No. 14 Michigan to five sets Wednesday, the MSU volleyball team fell short against its in-state rivals, 3-2.
The Spartans dropped the first and the third sets, but responded after both losses by taking the next set. Following a hard-fought loss in the third set, the Spartans responded by playing some of their best volleyball of the match in the fourth set to earn a 25-17 victory.
With the score knotted up and the game on the line, Michigan came out firing in the final set and finished off the Spartans with a 15-8 set win.
Although the loss drops the Spartans to 5-12 in the conference, the team battled back several times and will hope to use the intensity it showed Wednesday in Saturday’s home matchup against No. 12 Minnesota.
“I think we played good volleyball tonight and did a lot of things well,” head coach Cathy George said. “It’s hard because you come up a few points short and you see some improvement, and you’re not seeing it in the win and loss column.”
The Spartans were led by sophomore outside hitter Becca Zlabis’ match-high 20 kills, and senior middle blocker Mischelle Nelson’s seven blocks.
Saturday’s match is set for 8 p.m. and will likely be the final home game for Nelson and senior middle blocker Vanessa King.
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