Iowa volleyball swept by No. 5 Wisconsin

The Badgers beat the Hawkeyes 27-25, 25-15, and 19-25 inside Xtream Arena on Friday.


Lilly Stence

Wisconsin middle blocker Caroline Crawford sets the ball during a volleyball match between Iowa and Wisconsin at Xtream Arena in Coralville on Friday, October 14, 2022. The Badgers defeated the Hawkeyes, 25-19.

Kenna Roering, Sports Reporter

Iowa volleyball fell to the 2021 national champion Wisconsin Badgers, 3-0, inside Xtream Arena on Friday. The Badgers are currently ranked fifth in the nation.

Iowa is now 1-6 in Big Ten play and 7-11 overall under first-year head coach Jim Barnes.

“We battled, our effort was there on defense, and we didn’t give up,” Barnes said after the match. “But Wisconsin just played really well.” 

How it happened

Wisconsin jumped out to a 6-3 lead in the first set. Iowa kept it close as a block by middle hitter Amiya Jones tied it at 13.

The Badgers took a two-point lead late to force a Hawkeye timeout. Iowa responded with a kill by outside hitter Audrey Black and a service ace by outside hitter Michelle Urquhart to give the Hawkeyes a 23-22 lead. 

The Badgers went up, 25-24, on an attacking error, but a successful touch challenge by Barnes gave the one-point lead back to the Hawkeyes. Wisconsin then scored three consecutive points to take the set, 27-25.

“Losing the first set was rough,” Barnes said. “After that, [Wisconsin] relaxed a bit and both their left sides were unconscious from then and hit tremendously.”

Wisconsin outside hitter Sarah Franklin, who ranks eighth in the Big Ten in kills with 3.40 per set, led both squads with 20 kills on a .567 hitting efficiency.

The second set was tied, 4-4, but Wisconsin started to pull away from there. A block by Jones cut the Badgers’ lead to 15-11, but that was the closest the Hawkeyes would get for the rest of the set. 

Wisconsin took the second set, 25-15. The Hawkeyes were held to a .067 hitting efficiency in the second set while the Badgers hit .522. 

The third set was even at 12, but a 3-0 run by Wisconsin forced an Iowa timeout. The Hawkeyes cut the deficit to two with an Urquhart kill, but they couldn’t climb all the way back and dropped the third set, 25-19.

Iowa was held to a .138 hitting efficiency for the match. Black led the Hawkeye offense hitting .412, while Jones and Urquhart recorded 10 and nine kills, respectively. 

“The middles are always taking a big load for us pins, so I just felt we needed to step up tonight,” Black said. 

Wisconsin registered 14 blocks throughout the match and currently ranks second in the Big Ten with 3.01 blocks per set. 

Wisconsin middle blockers Danielle Hart and Caroline Crawford, who both rank inside the top 10 in the conference in blocks, led the Badgers with seven blocks each.

What’s next?

The Hawkeyes are back inside Xtream Arena on Saturday versus No. 14 Penn State. Match time is set for 7 p.m. and the contest will be streamed on BTN+. 

“I like how we match up with [Penn State],” Barnes said. “Some of the things we do well I think could get them in trouble, so we have to execute tomorrow and be ready to play.”