Iowa volleyball picks up first Big Ten Conference win of 2021 season

The Hawkeyes downed Michigan State, 3-1, at Jenison Fieldhouse in East Lansing Friday night.


Grace Smith

Iowa setter Bailey Ortega sets the ball during a volleyball game between Iowa and Illinois at Xtreme Arena in Coralville, Iowa, on Wednesday, Sept. 22, 2021. The Fighting Illini defeated the Hawkeyes with a score of 3-2.

Dawson Moore, Sports Reporter

Iowa volleyball defeated Michigan State on Friday night, snapping a 12-match losing streak. The match also marked the Hawkeyes’ first win against a Big Ten opponent this season.

Iowa put together its most complete performance Friday, downing Michigan State, 3-1.

Setter Bailey Ortega found her stride, registering 24 assists.

Junior outside hitter Edina Schmidt started her first game of the season against the Spartans. She finished the contest with a season-high nine kills.

Freshman Addie VanderWeide led the Hawkeyes in kills with 10.

Iowa wasn’t only dominant on offense either. The Hawkeyes registered a season-high nine team blocks Friday, suffocating the Spartan offensive.

Iowa did not follow its win over Michigan State with a win versus Michigan, however. The Hawkeyes traveled to Ann Arbor Saturday, where they were swept by the Wolverines at Cliff Keen Arena.

Wolverine sophomore Jess Mruzik helped push Michigan past Iowa with a game-high 14 kills.

Michigan setter Scotee Johnson freely distributed the ball to hitters like Mruzik Saturday, tallying 33 assists.

Senior outside hitter Courtney Buzzerio was Iowa’s only real offensive threat Saturday, amassing 12 kills. No other Hawkeyes recorded more than nine kills against Michigan.


After a 1-1 trip to the Great Lakes State, Iowa now boasts 1-11 Big Ten and 3-19 overall records.

The Hawkeyes’ pushed their way out of last place in the Big Ten Conference standings with their win over the Spartans. Rutgers now has sole possession of last place in the league with an 0-12 record versus Big Ten foes.


Iowa will play its next two games at Xtream Arena in Coralville. The Hawkeyes will take on Indiana Nov. 5 and No. 3 Wisconsin Nov. 6.

The Hoosiers will arrive in Coralville with 9-15 overall and 3-9 Big Ten records.

Indiana is led by freshman outside hitter Mady Saris, who’s accumulated 223 kills this year.

The Badgers are currently 18-2 overall and 10-2 in the Big Ten. Wisconsin has already swept Iowa once this season. The Badgers downed the Hawkeyes, 3-0, in Madison Oct. 6.

Both the Hawkeyes’ matchups this weekend will start at 7 p.m. and stream live on BTN+.