Wildcats Battle to Win at UNI Invitational
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa Kansas State used a combined 42 kills from sophomore Jenny Jantsch and senior Sandy Werner to defeat Northern Iowa, 3-1 (30-27, 30-27, 28-30, 31-29) and extend its win streak to six matches during the first match of the UNI Invitational. It is just the 11th loss by the Panthers in the West Gym in 16 years.
Werner carded 20 kills on a .256 hitting percentage and six blocks. It is her sixth career match of 20 or more kills. With her 25-point effort, the
Joining Jantsch and Werner in double figures were redshirt freshmen Tiffany Johnson and Ginta Gabruseva. Johnson tallied 15 kills on a team-high .387 hitting percentage. The Odenton, Md., native also added a career-high eight blocks to her ledger. Gabruseva added 12 kills.
The Wildcat offense was quarterbacked by junior Stacey Spiegelberg’s 62 assists and 14 digs for her fifth career match of 60 assists and 10th career double-double.
Junior libero Angie Lastra registered her 14th career 20 dig match and second of the season.. The Carolina, Puerto Rico native moved into sixth-place on the K-State career digs list with 1,122 to pass Liz Wegner.
In game one,
K-State took game one, 30-27, with a hitting percentage of .375 and 21 kills. The Wildcats were paced by Werner and Jantsch with six kills apiece. Spiegelberg dished out 20 assists and dropped in a service ace to continue the nation’s longest ace streak at 233 matches.
The Wildcats cobbled together a late 5-2 run to win game two, 30-27. Both teams had a difficult time finding open space on the other’s side of the floor, as K-State hit .100, while UNI tallied an even .000. K-State received another strong effort from Werner, who carded seven kills and a service ace in the game. Ginta Gabruseva also chipped into the attack with four kills.
K-State used a 6-0 run to hold a 13-6 lead and force UNI to use both timeouts early in the fourth game. The Panthers clawed back into the match and took a 22-18 lead. The Wildcats charged back into the frame with five Jantsch kills. K-State capped the 31-29 match-clinching win on a Megan Kroeker-Jantsch block.
Kansas State will finish play in the UNI Invitational on Saturday as they take on No. 23 Notre Dame at 10 a.m. and Alabama at 5 p.m. The morning match with the Fighting Irish will be broadcast live on 1350 KMAN in