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No. 15 Penn State Opens B1G Play with Sweep of Rutgers

Photo by Jeff Shomo
Mac Podraza had 45 assists while leading the Nittany Lions to .390 hitting

courtesy of GoPSU Athletics

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. – Jess Mruzik and Allie Holland combined for 27 kills on .568 hitting to lead No. 15 Penn State Women’s Volleyball to a decisive 3-0 (25-17, 25-15, 25-17) win over Rutgers in the Big Ten opener for both teams Wednesday night at Rec Hall.

The Nittany Lions improved to 7-3 overall and 1-0 in the conference with their third-straight win. It was their 33rd-consecutive victory in the series with Rutgers. The Scarlet Knights, who already equaled their win total from all of last season, dropped to 8-3.

Mruzik hit .533 with 18 kills and finished off her first double-double at Penn State with 10 digs. Holland hit .643 with nine kills. She was perfect on her first five swings of the match. Camryn Hannah had a solid performance with 10 kills on .350 hitting. That trio took advantage of a strong night from setter Mac Podraza, who finished with 45 assists while leading the team to .390 hitting.

Gillian Grimes paced the team in digs with 12, while Cassie Kuerschen and Anjelina Starck contributed eight and seven digs, apiece. Taylor Trammell chipped in with a team-high five blocks to help hold Rutgers to .127 hitting.

Taylor Humphrey led Rutgers with eight kills.

Set 1

Podraza had an amazing 18 assists while leading Penn State to .485 hitting in the first set. Holland was perfect in the first set with four kills on four swings as Penn State started with a 25-17 win. Mruzik was impressive with her seven kills on .700 hitting. The Nittany Lions used a 3-0 run with a kill by Holland and two by Mruzik to go up 5-2 early and never trailed again.

Set 2

Holland kept it going with three more kills on five swings to help Penn State take the second set 25-15. The Nittany Lions hit .364 behind 12 assists from Podraza. They took control early again, taking the lead for good after going up 3-2. They first started to pull away with a 3-0 run that included kills by Podraza and Hannah to go up 10-6. Another 3-0 run that included kills by Holland and Mruzik upped the lead to 14-8. The lead went as high as 10 multiple times.

Set 3

Mruzik had seven kills on .700 hitting in the final set as Penn State clinched the match with a 25-17 win. Podraza put up another huge number with 15 assists in a dominant showing by the Nittany Lions. They used a 9-0 run that included eight points with Starck at the service line to go up 15-8. Mruzik had three kills and Hannah added two during the run.


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