Saturday, November 28, 2020

Northwestern will give Spartans opportunity to build momentum on Wednesday

November 18, 2014
<p>From left, senior defense specialist Ryian Hubbard, senior libero Kori Moster, and senior outside hitter Taylor Galloway celebrate after scoring a point Nov. 15, 2014, during the game against Indiana University at Jenison Field House. The Spartans defeated the Hoosiers, 3-0. Raymond Williams/The State News</p>

From left, senior defense specialist Ryian Hubbard, senior libero Kori Moster, and senior outside hitter Taylor Galloway celebrate after scoring a point Nov. 15, 2014, during the game against Indiana University at Jenison Field House. The Spartans defeated the Hoosiers, 3-0. Raymond Williams/The State News

Photo by Raymond Williams | The State News

“We’re in a very confident state right now,” senior libero and team co-captain Kori Moster said. “We feel like we’re on the uprise.”

MSU (14-13 overall , 7-8 Big Ten ) will take on Northwestern (15-12 overall , 5-11 Big Ten ) in Evanston, Illinois, in search of back-to-back wins for the first time since mid-October.

The Spartans swept Indiana (15-13 overall , 6-10 Big Ten ) Saturday night at Jenison Field House in straight sets, 3-0 (25-12, 25-8, 25-14) .

“You really just look one step at a time in front of you,” head coach Cathy George said. She added that despite dominating the Hoosiers, she would still critique the things they didn’t do well.

But it might be hard for George to find fault in the Spartans’ last performance.

MSU set a school record against Indiana for fewest points allowed (34) in program history, and the eight points allowed in the second set was fewest since the 25-point scoring system was established in 2009.

The win over the Hoosiers was also the 750th in program history.

In the last matchup with the Wildcats, MSU swept Northwestern, 3-0 (25-17, 25-18, 25-16) , thanks to some fantastic play by their middle blockers.

Senior middle blocker Jazmine White had a memorable day against Northwestern, totaling 11 kills and hit at a .529 clip , both of which were career highs.

Freshman middle blocker Alyssa Garvelink also had six kills and two blocks .

“It’s important to have balance ... middles are a part of that,” George said. “We’re looking to get our offense together so that we don’t have to rely on any one person.”

On the defensive end, MSU will have to keep tabs on Northwestern’s freshman outside hitter Symone Abbott , who leads the team with 327 kills and averages 3.24 kills per set .

The Spartans were able to contain Abbott in the first matchup, holding her to just six kills on a .074 hitting percentage .

“We know that it’s coming down to crunch time, and these end of the year matches really matter for us for the fate that we have in the NCAA Tournament,” Moster said.

First serve is set for 8 p.m.

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