Iowa volleyball swept by Northwestern

The Hawkeyes lost their 10th straight match, and have not won a set in seven consecutive games.


Casey Stone

Iowa outside hitter Addie VanderWeide sends the ball over the net during a volleyball game between Iowa and Michigan at Carver-Hawkeye Arena on Saturday, Oct. 2, 2021. Michigan defeated Iowa 3-0.

Dawson Moore, Sports Reporter

Iowa volleyball’s losing streak moved to 10 matches when the Hawkeyes were swept by Northwestern on Saturday night.

Iowa has not won a set in seven-straight matches, as offensive and defensive struggles keep piling up.

One of those struggles included Northwestern outside hitter Temi Thomas-Aliara, who finished with 13 kills in the three-set match.

Northwestern sophomore setter Alexa Rousseau was vital to the Wildcats’ success on offense, registering 37 assists.

Despite the three-set loss, Iowa was highly effective in the pass-serve game, finishing with six service aces. Freshman setter Jenna Splitt had half of the Hawkeyes’ aces, forcing the Wildcats out of position throughout the match.

“Our biggest goal going into each match is maintaining the pass-serve game,” head coach Vicki Brown said postgame. “And I think we did a good job of maintaining that this evening.” 

Iowa is still striving for consistency on the offensive end. The Hawkeyes posted just a .105 hit percentage, and senior outside hitter Courtney Buzzerio was the only player to finish with double-digit kills.


Iowa falls to 2-16 overall and 0-8 in conference play in the 2021 campaign.

The Hawkeyes continue to be in sole possession of last place in the Big Ten. Although the Hawkeyes are capable of making winning plays throughout its matches, Iowa needs to string moments together to record a victory in the Big Ten column.


Three freshmen started the match for the Hawkeyes: Toyosi Onabanjo at outside hitter, Jenna Splitt at setter, and Addie VanderWeide at defensive specialist.

VanderWeide, Onabanjo, and Splitt have been essential to the Hawkeyes this season.

VanderWeide is second on the team in kills, Splitt is second in assists, and Onabanjo brings intensity and ferociousness only matched by seniors Hannah Clayton and Amiya Jones.

“Addie is finding her game, and it’s really cool seeing her get that experience as a freshman,” Brown said. “Toyosi is the type of athlete where you can put her anywhere on the floor, and Jenna is getting that experience. It was great to see her serving game be so effective tonight.”


After a six-match drought, senior Courtney Buzzerio registered double-digit kills against Northwestern, accumulating 13.

Courtney Buzzerio leads the Hawkeyes with 268 total kills in the 2021 campaign.

“I look for any opportunity where I can put the ball away,” Buzzerio said. “When games get close, I expect the ball and I feel like I have earned the right to do so, and when the ball comes to me I have to find a way to put it down.”


The Hawkeyes will face No.9 Nebraska on Wednesday night at Xtream Arena.

The Hawkeyes faced Nebraska earlier this season, getting swept by the Huskers in Lincoln on Sept. 25.

Iowa and Nebraska will face off at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, and the match will be streamed on BTN+.