The University of Wisconsin volleyball team had another successful 2-0 weekend against No. 12 Michigan and unranked Michigan State — setting some records and accolades in the process.
The Badgers first challenge was against the Michigan Wolverines in Ann Arbor. Michigan, coming off of a three-set win against Northwestern last weekend, knew the Badgers would bring their A-game following their two Big Ten wins last week.
The first set started out in favor of Wisconsin. The Badgers built up a three-point lead early and held this margin through the set until Michigan junior Carly Skjodt rallied the Wolverines back to a 25–18 opening set win.
The second set of this match held the score back and forth until a 10-1 Badger run gave Wisconsin a substantial lead halfway through the set. Dana Rettke propelled the run with three kills of her own. Wisconsin then cruised to a 25–16 set win and tied the match 1–1.
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Once again Wisconsin got out to an early lead in the third set. But an opening five-point lead was broken down by Skjodt and the Wolverines. Down by three late in the set, it was in the service of Sydney Hilley that the Badgers rallied back to take the third set, 25–22.
Another early lead by Wisconsin wasn’t enough to hold back the Wolverines who were about to lose on their home court. Once again, with the ball in the hands of Skjodt, Michigan went on an 8-0 run to take the lead and win the set 25–21. For the third time this season, Wisconsin found themselves in a winner take all fifth set.
With fifth sets only going to 15, the Badgers got off to an important early lead, holding on to claim the set 15–11 and win the match 3–2.
Team leaders for the Badgers were Rettke with 21 kills and nine blocks, Hilley with 53 assists and libero Tiffany Clark with a school record 33 digs in five sets to lead the Badger back row to another dominant performance. This also marked Head Coach Kelly Sheffield’s 150th win with Wisconsin.
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The second game on their road trip led the Badgers to East Lansing to face the Michigan State Spartans. It was a battle of the siblings with Molly Haggerty of the Badgers going toe to toe with her sister Maddie Haggerty of the Spartans. The Badgers, building off of the momentum from Ann Arbor, shut down the Spartans in a quick 3–0 match.
The first set carried an unlikely characteristic of the Badgers having to rally back from an early deficit. But Wisconsin was still able to rally back to a 25–14 opening set win.
The second set was more of a dominant showing by Wisconsin. The Badgers out to an early lead held it all the way through the set and went up 2–0 with a 25–20 second set win.
A back and forth third set still shared the same result as the others as the Badgers sweep the Spartans on a 25–23 third set win.
Rettke led in kills with 11, two aces and four blocks against Michigan State. Meanwhile, Hilley recorded 36 assists and Clark continued a dominant the weekend with 12 digs.
The Badgers will travel back home for a Halloween face off with the third-ranked Minnesota Gophers Wednesday night. The game will broadcast on the Big Ten Network and will begin at 8 p.m. from the UW Field House.