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    Gray Nets 12 Kills, But Wildcats Fall to No. 20 Michigan in Three

    NUSPORTSDOTCOM Sophomore Brittani Gray lead Northwestern with 12 kills against the Wolverines.
    Sophomore Brittani Gray lead Northwestern with 12 kills against the Wolverines.

    Nov. 7, 2008

    NU at Michigan Box Score Get Acrobat Reader

    2008 Northwestern Volleyball Statistics Get Acrobat Reader

    Box Score

    ANN ARBOR, Mich. -- Northwestern held its own against 20th-ranked Michigan at Cliff Keen Arena, but ultimately the Wolverines proved too much, taking a 3-0 victory (25-21, 25-21, 25-18) over the `Cats. Michigan improves to 19-7 on the year and are 7-6 in Big Ten play, while Northwestern drops to 8-16 overall and 2-11 in conference action.

    Coming off its three-set sweep of Michigan State Saturday, the Wildcats came out the aggressor against the Wolverines, pouncing out to an 8-3 lead early in the first set. But Michigan would rally back to take a 20-15 lead, then held off a late NU rally en route to taking the opening frame 25-21. Senior Chelsy Hyser (Belvidere, Ill./Belvidere) recorded five kills on seven attempts while junior Ariel Baxterbeck (Menlo Park, Calif./Castilleja) and sophomore Brittani Gray (Cincinnati, Ohio/Sycamore) added three a piece for the `Cats. Sophomore Elyse Glab (Chicago, Ill./Resurrection) dished out 11 assists for Northwestern.

    The Wolverines controlled the early tempo of the second set, returning the favor by jumping out to an 8-3 lead of its own. Michigan was able to extend that lead to eight at 16-8 before watching NU cut that advantage to two at 20-18. But a 5-3 run closed out the set for the Wolverines, taking a 2-0 lead with the 25-21 victory. Gray's seven paced the Wildcat offense, with freshman Alexandra Ayers (Playa del Rey, Calif./Marymount) adding three of her own. Glab added 12 assists while junior Kate Nobilio (Johnsburg, Ill./Johnsburg) added five digs defensively for Northwestern.

    In keeping with the theme of the evening, it was the Wildcats' turn to take the early 8-3 lead in the third set, and pushed that lead to seven at 11-4. But Michigan would come storming back, using a 7-0 run to knot the score at 11. The Wolverines slowly distanced themselves from the Wildcats down the stretch, leading by as many as six at 23-17 before closing out the match with the 25-18 win. Megan Bower lead all players with 13 kills for Michigan and Beth Karpiak added nine as the Wolverines have now won 17 of the last 18 matches against the `Cats in Ann Arbor.

    Gray finished with 12 kills for Northwestern for her 12th double-digit kill total this season, while Hyser added nine kills and had three blocks for the Wildcats. Glab finished with 30 assists on the night and added eight digs, while Nobilio recorded her 22nd double-digit dig total of the season, finishing with 10. Sophomore Sabel Moffett (Temecula, Calif./Chapparal) added four kills and a pair of blocks as well for the `Cats.

    The Wildcats now head south to Columbus, Ohio, for a Saturday night showdown against the Buckeyes, beginning at 7 p.m. The match will be televised by the Big Ten Network, marking the third and final time Northwestern will make an appearance on the network.