Wolverines Stay Close but Fall in Three at No. 9 Penn State
Jennifer Cross

Oct. 22, 2011

Box Score

Site: State College, Pa. (Rec Hall)
Result: #9 Penn State 3, #21 Michigan 0 (25-22, 25-21, 25-23)
Records: U-M (15-7, 3-7 Big Ten), PSU (15-5, 8-2 Big Ten)
Next U-M Event: Friday, Oct. 28 -- vs. Purdue (Cliff Keen Arena), 7 p.m.

STATE COLLEGE, Pa. -- The No. 21-ranked University of Michigan volleyball team was victimized by late Penn State runs in all three sets as the No. 9-ranked Nittany Lions swept the Wolverines (25-22, 25-21, 25-23) on Saturday night (Oct. 22) at Rec Hall.

Senior Courtney Fletcher (Johns Creek, Ga./Northview) led the Wolverines with 12 kills on a .417 attack percentage to go with a season-high five digs and two total blocks. Sophomore Lexi Erwin (Spring, Texas/Woodlands College Park), senior Alex Hunt (Granger, Ind./South Bend St. Joseph) and sophomore Jennifer Cross (Scarborough, Ont./Birchmount Park Collegiate) each chipped in eight kills as Michigan hit .237 in the match. Freshman setter Lexi Dannemiller (West Chester, Ohio/Lakota West) handed out 36 assists and recorded four digs and two kills.

After Michigan fought back from a 17-13 deficit in the opening set to knot the score at 18-18 on a termination by sophomore Molly Toon (Middleton, Wis./Middleton), Penn State scored the next three points for a 21-18 lead. The Maize and Blue stopped the PSU run by ripping off four consecutive points on kills from Fletcher, McElheny and Erwin and a service ace from Dannemiller to go in front, 22-21. However, the Nittany Lions scored the final four points of the set for a 25-22 win.

Penn State jumped out to a 4-1 lead in the second and increased its lead to as many as six at 16-10. U-M slowly climbed out of the hole, getting within two points at 23-21 when McElheny and Fletcher teamed up for a block. Dannemiller missed her serve into the net on the next point, and Penn State closed it out with a service ace on the ensuing point for the 25-21 victory.

In the third, Michigan sprinted out to a 12-8 lead to force an early Penn State timeout. U-M held the lead until Hunt was blocked on the outside to tie the frame at 19-19. The teams then traded points with Penn State tying the match at 23-23 when Fletcher mishit her attempt to tip over the block. The Nittany Lions recorded the next two points on a kill out of the middle and a kill on the right side for a 25-23 win to close out the match.

The Wolverines return to Cliff Keen Arena for two matches next weekend, taking on No.12 Purdue on Friday (Oct. 28) and Indiana on Saturday (Oct. 29). Both matches will start at 7 p.m.


• Michigan has never won at Rec Hall.

• Tonight's match will air on ESPN2 Sunday (Oct. 23) at 1 p.m. EDT.

• Michigan fell to 0-4 when on television this season and 2-5 against ranked opponents.

Courtney Fletcher recorded her 10th match this season with at least 10 kills.

Michelle McMahon made her first career start. She had a career-best seven digs.

Molly Toon started in place of Lexi Erwin. It was the first match this season that Erwin did not start.

• U-M is now 0-6 when hitting a lower attack percentage than its opponents.

Contact: Sarah VanMetre (734) 763-4423

»  Learn about Michigan volleyball ticket opportunities for the 2017 season.