BLOOMINGTON, Ind. (Purdue Sports) — The No. 20 Purdue volleyball team (9-4, 2-3 Big Ten) fought off a resilient Indiana squad (12-5, Big Ten), 3-2, Wednesday night at Wilkinson Hall. With the victory, the Boilermakers secure their 12th consecutive Monon Spike and 34th overall.
Sophomore Grace Cleveland guided Purdue's victorious efforts with a match-high 23 kills. Freshman Emma Ellis followed with a career-best 13 kills, while redshirt senior Blake Mohler added 12. Redshirt sophomore Hayley Bush paced the offense with a match-high 56 assists. Defensively, junior Jena Otec led the Boilermakers with 24 digs.
HOW IT HAPPENED
SET 1 (26-24) | Purdue allowed a 5-1 Indiana run open the first set, falling behind 7-4, before closing the gap with consecutive kills from redshirt senior Shavona Cuttino. Knotted at nine, the rivals went point-for-point until they found themselves tied at 24. Back-to-back kills from freshman Madeline Koch and Cleveland sealed the set for Purdue, 26-24. Overall, Cleveland had seven kills in the frame.
SET 2 (16-25) | Indiana fought back with an almost perfect set that saw Hoosiers tally 16 kills with only one error. Limiting Purdue to a .139 hitting percentage, the home squad claimed the set 25-16.
SET 3 (25-18) | Indiana opened the third set with an 8-5 edge, but that is all the room Purdue allowed the Hoosiers. A trio of kills from Ellis and sophomore Jael Johnson tied the frame at nine, before the Boilermakers delivered a 6-1 run for the lead. Owning a 20-15 advantage, Purdue closed out the set with three consecutive Cleveland kills. Cleveland and Ellis led the set with five kills apiece.
SET 4 (24-26) | The Boilermakers limited the Hoosiers to a .082 hitting percentage, but with the frame knotted at 24, consecutive Purdue errors gave the set to Indiana.
SET 5 (15-13) | Purdue and Indiana continued their back-and-forth affair in the final frame, exchanging runs and tying the set six times. Knotted at three, Purdue capitalized on a quartet of Hoosier errors to push ahead 7-4, but Indiana responded with a 5-2 run to tie the score at nine. The rivals would go point-for-point until they knotted the score at 13. From there, Ellis took control of the set, delivering a pair of kills to seal the set and the match for Purdue.
No.20 Purdue stays on the road with a visit to Northwestern on Saturday, Oct. 11. Meeting for the second time this season, the Boilermakers and the Wildcats are set to square off at 8 p.m. ET.