Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Winning Streaks

The Illini women's volleyball team is on an 11-game winning streak, after defeating #15 Michigan and Michigan State last weekend. Ranked #5, the Illini will put their longest winning streak in 17 years to the test at #1 Penn State this Friday night.

And Penn State has a very impressive streak of their own going -- 90 straight matches. The Nittany Lions are riding the longest volleyball winning streak in NCAA history, and the 3rd longest winning streak of any NCAA sport.

Last weekend the Illini broke in a new libero, as sophomore Rachel Feldman took over for Ashley Edinger, who ended her Illini career with a torn ACL. Feldman had an excellent debut match, with 19 digs and successful returns on 41 serves against Michigan.

Michigan took the first set, but the Illini rallied from 5 points down to take a one point lead before losing 27-25. But the Kevin Hambly's girls won the next 3 sets to win the match. They followed this performance with a strong win against Michigan State -- the last team to beat the Illini.

Junior Laura DeBruler earned Big Ten Player of the Week honors for her performance over the weekend, and she is second in the conference in both kills and points per set.

DeBruler and her team will face a tough challenge Friday Night in State College. But they are firmly in second place in the Big Ten. They will follow up the Penn State match with a Sunday match at Ohio State. That game will be broadcast as a taped game on the Big Ten Network Sunday night. These girls are worth watching. Seriously.

Go Illini!

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