Badgers fall short in hard-fought battle with Illini

Clark tallies career-best 26 digs in first home loss

 

Oct. 13, 2018

 

MADISON, Wis. – Despite late rallies in the third and fourth sets, the eighth-ranked Wisconsin volleyball team was unable to put away No. 7 Illinois Saturday night in the UW Field House, falling in four sets, 23-25, 25-21, 35-33, 25-23.

 

After winning the first set and dropping the second set, Wisconsin (12-4 overall, 5-3 B1G) came back from being down 24-22 in the third set to even the frame at 24-24. UW went on to serve for the set eight times before Illinois (16-3, 5-3) scored three straight to win the marathon set 35-33.

 

Libero Tiffany Clark had a heck of a night. The junior collected a career-high 26 digs to lead all players.

 

The Badgers hit .210 (63 kills – 26 errors – 176 attempts) for the match compared to the Illini’s .220 (66-27-177). Dana Rettke (19), Tionna Williams (12) and Grace Loberg (10) each recorded double-digit kills for UW.

 

Loberg also tallied 10 digs for a double-double and Molly Haggerty joined in with 10 digs of her own but Illinois ended up with a slight 72-71 advantage in the backcourt.

 

The Illini also out blocked Wisconsin 15-13 despite Williams and Rettke each earning six stuffs.

 

 

Notes to know

  • The Badgers scored 33 points in the third set, which ties for the second most points scored under 25-point rally scoring. Wisconsin also gave up 35 points in the third set, the most points scored by an opponent in a set under 25-point rally scoring.
  • Junior Tiffany Clark saved a career-high 26 digs, recording back-to-back 20-plus dig performances on the weekend. She had a match-high 21 digs vs. Northwestern on Friday.
  • Wisconsin hit a season-low .210 (63-26-176).
  • UW snapped its five-match home winning streak with tonight’s loss.
  • Redshirt sophomore Molly Haggerty recorded just the second block solo of her career.
  • Sophomore Grace Loberg tied her career best with four assists.
  • Sophomore Dana Rettke took a career high 46 attack attempts while tying her career best of two assists.
  • Redshirt junior Madison Duello put away seven kills to go over 400 career kills.

 

Straight from the court

“I thought it was a heck of a college volleyball match. It was two teams that have now played eight sets, and I’m not sure all eight sets couldn’t have been any closer than what they’ve been. It’s two evenly-matched teams. We let an opportunity go in the third, we weren’t able to capitalize and that was a tough set to lose. I was proud of our fight there in the fourth.”

 

-Head coach Kelly Sheffield

 

“We didn’t get the outcome we wanted but I saw a lot of growth in our team in every aspect. Going forward, I think we just build on that mentality in the gym and have the right mentality with each other and we’ll get better.”

 

-Middle blocker Dana Rettke

 

Up next

The Badgers welcome No. 5 Nebraska to the UW Field House Friday night for an 8 p.m. match. The contest will be televised live on the Big Ten Network and fans are encouraged to wear white.