Illinois kicks off spring schedule

By Sports Staff

After falling to Big Ten foe Nebraska during the Final Four round of the NCAA tournament last fall, the Illinois volleyball team fell to another familiar face during their first spring exhibition game in West Lafayette, Indiana.

The Illini kicked off their brief spring campaign against the Purdue Boilermakers on Saturday with a 1-4 loss. (25-21, 25-17, 21-25, 25-20)

The Boilermakers finished sixth in the Big Ten last year, after going 12-8 in the conference and 24-9 overall. Illinois not only concluded 2018 with its best tournament run since 2011, but the team also glided over Purdue twice with a pair of 3-1 victories in September and November.

In a tweet from @PurdueVB, the opposing program thanked Illinois for allowing Purdue to host the match and said redshirt-junior middle blocker Blake Mohler led the Boilers with five blocks, while freshman defensive specialist Marissa Hornung peppered their victory with 14 digs and outside hitter Caitlyn Newton highlighted the match with 16 kills.

While the match marked the first of four outings on the team’s spring schedule, it wasn’t the last time the Illini will see the Boilers. On Saturday, April 6, Illinois will travel to Louisville, Kentucky for the Kentucky Volleyball Coaches Association Tournament and then the team will welcome Purdue to Huff Hall for their second face-off of the abbreviated season. On April 12, the Illini will travel to Peoria, Illinois to take on the Bradley Braves.

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