Who would’ve guessed it: No. 1 Penn State falls to No. 4 Nebraska

Who would’ve guessed it: No. 1 Penn State falls to No. 4 Nebraska

I’m still not too sure what happened, but No. 4 Nebraska handed the No. 1 Nittany Lions the first loss of the season on Friday night.

In front of a home crowd, Penn State fell short in five sets to the Huskers (25-12, 26-24, 14-25, 20-25, 11-15).

Senior Megan Courtney had an all-around stellar performance with 16 kills, 22 digs and career-high eight blocks– in my opinion, she gets the MVP award for this game.

Redshirt senior Aiyana Whitney followed her on offense 14 kills and also tallied three blocks. Sophomore Haleigh Washington rounded out the trio with 11 kills, team-high nine blocks and one ace.

The total team statistics were pretty tight with Nebraska edging out Penn State by three more kills, aces and digs. Penn State had one more block than Nebraska and the teams nearly broke even in terms of total errors; Penn State ended up with two more than the Huskers.

In my opinion, the timing of Penn State’s errors in combination with the Huskers’ momentum that caught on early in the third set is ultimately what carried them to victory.

At the start of the fifth set, the teams went back and forth until the score came to its final tie at 7-7. This is when Nebraska pulled ahead with two kills and Penn State called a timeout. That backfired, as the Huskers returned to the court with a block, a kill, a Penn State error and another forced Penn State timeout.

This time sophomore Simone Lee came out of the huddle with a kill, but Nebraska responded with a 3-1 run to reach the match point at 14-10. Courtney made one more kill to keep the hope alive, but the Nittany Lions couldn’t hold off that final winning point for the Huskers.

No saw it coming, but the loss put Penn State’s record at 13-1, 2-1 in the conference. Stay tuned for the next post that recaps Saturday’s match against Iowa and the infamous Dig Pink night at Rec Hall.