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Volleyball ‘Birds Blocked by Beacons in Conference Home Opener

Written by on October 2, 2022

Image courtesy of Redbird Athletics

NORMAL, Ill. – On the night when the Illinois State University volleyball team unveiled their new black uniforms, the team fell at home in four sets against Valparaiso.

“Just disappointing and unfortunate that we created the hype we did around that match,” said ISU Head Coach Allie Matters. “Valpo’s defense was just unbelievable, and we couldn’t get anything to go our way tonight.”

Valparaiso would come out strong in the first set, roaring to an early lead the Redbirds wouldn’t be able to come back from. The Redbirds stayed resilient in the second set snagging it with a score of 25-17, but would run out of gas and not be able to put together any momentum with Valparaiso having an answer on defense for almost everything the Birds threw their way. Valpo would go on to win the next two sets in dominant fashion 25-16 and 25-13 in that order.

Valparaiso’s defense was smothering the Redbirds’ offense as they accumulated 14 blocks across four sets. ISU couldn’t get much going on offense by the way of the ace, only having one for the whole match coming from Emily Weber.

“I think we had a poor execution night,” said Kaity Weimerskirch. “I think we were in a little bit of a mental battle.”
her milestone of being the 7th Redbird in program history to record 1,000 career kills, and 1,000 digs through her career at ISU.

Sarah Kushner was celebrated in a pregame ceremony at Redbird Arena where she was celebrated for her milestone of being the 7th Redbird in program history to record 1,000 career kills, and 1,000 digs through her career at ISU.

“Sarah carries a lot of weight for us,” said Matters. “She swung at 54 balls, that’s a lot in four sets”.

The Redbirds will look to bounce back from this home loss this Sunday at 4 p.m. at Redbird Arena where one of the newest addition to the Missouri Valley Conference, UIC, will come to town.