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    Johnson, Holthus Pace Northwestern To 3-0 Sweep Of Harvard

    NUSPORTSDOTCOM Naomi Johnson led all players with 12 kills and four blocks in the victory over Harvard.
    NUSPORTSDOTCOM
    Naomi Johnson led all players with 12 kills and four blocks in the victory over Harvard.
    NUSPORTSDOTCOM

    Sept. 18, 2010

    Northwestern 3, Harvard 0
    29th Annual Wildcat Classic
    Site: Welsh-Ryan Arena • Evanston, Ill.
    Records: Northwestern (9-1), Harvard (2-8)
    Up Next: Marquette • Saturday, Sept. 18 • 7 p.m.

    Box Score
    Northwestern vs. Harvard Box Score Get Acrobat Reader
    2010 Northwestern Volleyball Statistics Get Acrobat Reader

    EVANSTON, Ill. -- Behind 12 kills and four blocks from Naomi Johnson (Bloomington, Minn./Kennedy) and an additional 10 kills and two blocks from Stephanie Holthus (Burlington, Ill./Central), Northwestern earned a 25-19, 25-13, 25-20 victory over Harvard at the 29th annual Wildcat Classic at Welsh-Ryan Arena. The Wildcats improved to 9-1 on the year, its most wins in the preseason since going 9-2 in 2007.

    Johnson had her 12 kills on 22 attempts with just three errors for a .409 hitting percentage. Sabel Moffett (Temecula, Calif./Chapparal) posted seven kills and three blocks on the afternoon, with six of those kills coming in the second set. Elyse Glab (Chicago, Ill./Resurrection) had 31 assists on the day with a pair of blocks while Julie Chin (Naperville, Ill./North) paced the 'Cats with 13 digs.

    It was Harvard that had the early momentum, however, building a three-point advantage at 12-9 in the opening set. The Wildcats would battle back to tie the set at 17, then used an 8-2 run down the stretch to close out the opening frame 25-19. Johnson set the tone with five kills in set one as she, Holthus and Moffett each recorded a pair of blocks.

    Set two began in similar fashion to set one as the Crimson recorded the set's first four points. But Harvard's upset bid was short-lived as Northwestern outpaced the Crimson 25-9 down the stretch, including a 9-0 run midway through that broke the set open. Along with Moffett's six kills, Alex Ayers (Playa del Rey, Calif./Marymount) added a pair of service aces, finishing with three.

    With the match on the line, the Wildcats slowly began to pull away in set three, building a six-point lead at 13-7. The Crimson would cut the deficit to one at 16-15, but Northwestern proved to be too much down the stretch, outscoring Harvard 9-5 to seal the 25-20 victory and its ninth victory of the season.

    Northwestern now prepares for the de facto Wildcat Classic championship game tonight against Marquette. The Golden Eagles have matched the Wildcats' performance this weekend, notching sweeps over the Crimson and 49ers. Opening serve is set for 7 p.m. this evening at Welsh-Ryan Arena.

    MATCH NOTES

    • Northwestern improves to 2-0 all-time against Harvard after recording a 3-1 decision over the Crimson in 2002.

    • The nine pre-Big Ten wins is the most for the Wildcats since going 9-2 to start the season in 2007. The last time Northwestern had 10 victories prior to the start of Big Ten play was in 1998 when the Wildcats went 10-2.

    • Johnson recorded her 100th kill of the season and now leads the Wildcats in that category, sitting at 111 for the season with Moffett right behind at 108.

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