Iowa volleyball swept by No. 4 Wisconsin

The Hawkeyes fell to the Badgers in three sets on Saturday night at Xtream Arena.


Ayrton Breckenridge

Iowa setter Bailey Ortega looks at a referee after a call during a volleyball match between Iowa and No. 4 Wisconsin at Xtream Arena on Saturday, Nov. 6, 2021. The Badgers defeated the Hawkeyes 3-0.

Dawson Moore, Sports Reporter

After an emotional win against Indiana on Friday, Iowa volleyball struggled against No. 4 Wisconsin at Xtream Arena in Coralville Saturday.

The Badgers dominated the Hawkeyes, picking up a 3-0 victory. Three of Wisconsin’s players registered over nine kills. Dana Rettke led the Badgers with 14 kills.

“It all starts with Wisconsin’s pass game,” Iowa interim head coach Dave Brown said postgame. “They did a really good job of staying in-system tonight. When you’re in-system with Dana Rettke, it’s hard to stop.”

The Hawkeyes only recorded two services aces Saturday, allowing Badger setter Sydney Hilley to set up Wisconsin’s attack and tally 35 assists.

Iowa senior outside hitter Courtney Buzzerio led Iowa’s offensive, piling up a match-high 15 kills.

Buzzerio was aided by the efforts of sophomore setter Bailey Ortega, who finished Saturday’s game with 27 assists.


Following their loss to the Badgers Saturday, the Hawkeyes dropped to 4-20 overall on the season. Iowa’s Big Ten Conference record is now 2-12.

Iowa is currently in 13th place in the 14-team Big Ten standings.

Wisconsin, Nebraska, Minnesota, Penn State, and Purdue are all within two games of each other at the top of the Big Ten standings. Wisconsin and Nebraska are separated by just one loss in the league standings.


UCLA transfer junior Mari Hinkle made plays all over the floor for Iowa Saturday. The libero amassed nine digs, three assists, and one service ace.

“I think her willingness to just lay out and sacrifice her body is really something special,” Buzzerio said. “She’s good at serve-receive and also defensively. It’s nice to know that you have a stable libero out there. You know, no matter what, she’s going to be going for that ball.”


Iowa’s next game will come Nov. 11 at Xtream Arena. The Hawkeyes will take on No. 11 Minnesota. The Golden Gophers boast 16-6 overall and 11-3 Big Ten records this year.

The Hawkeyes and Golden Gophers have not played each other yet this season.

Action between Iowa and Minnesota will begin at 7 p.m. Nov. 11 and stream live on BTN+.

Just six games remain on Iowa’s regular season schedule — four of which are road games.

After its matchup with Minnesota, Iowa will take on Maryland at home Nov. 13. From there, Iowa will play its four remaining 2021 matches on the road.