Mizzou Sweeps IUPUI to Advance to Second Round

<i>SEC Player of the Year Molly Kreklow posted 41 assists on 53 Tiger kills. </i>

SEC Player of the Year Molly Kreklow posted 41 assists on 53 Tiger kills.

Dec. 6, 2013

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COLUMBIA, Mo. - The No. 4 Mizzou volleyball team swept IUPUI, 3-0 (25-22, 25-15, 25-18), on Friday evening at the Hearnes Center in round one of the NCAA Tournament as Mizzou advanced to the second round of the NCAA Tournament for the sixth time in program history. The Tigers will play No. 19 Purdue in round two tomorrow at 7:30 p.m. at the Hearnes Center. On Friday, Mizzou was paced by a double-double from two-time All-American Lisa Henning (Blue Springs, Mo.) as she tallied a match-high 15 kills on .333 hitting with 10 digs. Freshman Carly Kan (Honolulu, Hawaii) added 14 kills on .357 hitting with nine digs as well.

"Well this time of the year, the name of the game is survive and advance," head coach Wayne Kreklow said. "I didn't think we came out particularly sharp today, but I thought we kind of found our rhythm midway through the third set and started playing like we had all season. We hadn't done anything for about 10 days, so we needed to get out and play someone. Now we have to shift our focus to a very good Purdue team tomorrow."

SEC Player of the Year Molly Kreklow (Delano, Minn.) spread 41 assists on 53 Tiger kills as she led Mizzou to .328 hitting, the 30th time in 35 matches that Mizzou has hit better than .300. Kreklow also added 14 digs for her 12th double-double of the season. Junior Emily Wilson (Omaha, Neb.) added seven kills on .294 hitting and classmate Whitney Little (Keller, Texas) pitched in six kills on .417 hitting with six total blocks (two solo, four assists). She is now just three blocks shy of matching her own single season blocks record and she reset the school single season solo blocks records as she now has 41 on the season.

Mizzou was sluggish in the first set as IUPUI hung tough with the fourth-ranked Tigers, taking an 11-8 lead midway through the first as the Tigers struggled to get going offensively. Following a Wayne Kreklow timeout, IUPUI actually extended its lead to 13-9 before a 7-3 Tiger run tied the set at 16-all. The Tigers then opened a 20-17 lead following a kill from Kreklow, but IUPUI then rallied to tie the set at 22-22. But Mizzou scored the last three points of the set to win, 25-22, on Henning's fifth kill of the set. Mizzou hit just .244 in the opening frame.

The Tigers opened the second set on fire and looked much more like the team that drew the No. 4 national seed, blitzing the Jaguars for a 10-2 lead after a setter dump from Kreklow. That was all Mizzou needed to run away with the set, 25-15. The Tigers hit .429 in the frame with 18 kills on 35 attacks, led by five from Henning who needed just nine attempts for those five kills.

The third set was more of the same as Mizzou opened with an 8-2 lead, using a variety of tip shots to open that advantage. In fact, Mizzou tallied six kills on its first 10 swings, four of which were on tip shots. That forced an IUPUI timeout and following the break, Mizzou extended its lead to 14-7 to force another IUPUI timeout and the Jaguars rallied to score five straight points to cut the Tiger lead to two as Mizzou committed three attack errors in that span and that led to a Wayne Kreklow stoppage. The Jaguars rallied to tie the set at 14-all, but Mizzou scored 11 of the last 15 points to clinch the set and the match. Mizzou had 18 kills on .333 hitting in the third.

Mizzou will play Purdue tomorrow in the second round for a chance to advance to the Sweet 16 for the first time since 2010. The match will begin at 7:30 p.m. at the Hearnes Center. For all the latest on Mizzou volleyball, stay tuned to MUTigers.com and follow the team on twitter @MizzouVB.



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