Skip to comments.Big Ten showdown in NCAA volleyball final: No. 2 Penn State vs. No. 12 Wisconsin
Posted on 12/20/2013 6:32:46 PM PST by FlJoePa
SEATTLE Whatever the result in the final, it has already been a special postseason run for 12th-seeded Wisconsin.
The Badgers are the lowest seed to make the NCAA volleyball championship match after upsetting No. 1 defending national champion Texas in the semifinals. Wisconsin (28-9) is proving that even a team without overwhelming size up front can still have success in the NCAAs.
The Nittany Lions are coming off one of the most overwhelming performances of the season, never letting hometown Washington into the match in a 3-0 sweep in the semifinals. It was their 24 straight victory, having not lost since Sept. 27 against Michigan State.
Getting to this stage of the tournament is commonplace for the Nittany Lions under coach Russ Rose. This will be the fifth time Penn State has played for the national title since 2007, including a run of four straight championships from 2007-10. The Nittany Lions have one of the more dynamic front lines in the country, led by Deja McClendon and Ariel Scott and a multi-talented setter in Micha Hancock, who controlled the match against Washington with her curving, left-handed jump serves just as much as her passing at the net.
For the Badgers to cap their run it means solving Penn State (33-2) and a long history of dominance the Nittany Lions have over their conference foes and on the NCAA stage. Saturday will be the ninth time Penn State has played for a national title, winning five previous championships. The Nittany Lions have won 19 of their past 21 matches against Wisconsin, including a pair of 3-0 wins over the Badgers in Big Ten play this season.
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If anyone hasn't seen Micha Hancock serve a volleyball, watch this Championship match tomorrow night (9:30 espn2).
Lauren Carlini is something special as well. Should be a great match.
Wisconsin is scrappy, but the championship game will be a re-run of the PSU-Washington match.
Lauren Carlini is a great setter, but doesn’t have the hitters like PSU. Wisconsin does play excellent back-row defense. Texas was off their game on Thursday and didn’t deserve to win.
Psu volleyball is a dynasty
If Micha serves and sets like she did the other night, the national team might have a tough time beating PSU, but she's not always that consistent.
My favorite Micha picture (from HS no less):
Wisconsin will be lucky to score 20 in any set; maybe only 17-18. It will be over pretty quick.
Yikes, that’s one vertical young lady !
She flies and spits bullets upon the enemy.