In two road matches against ranked teams this year, Maryland volleyball had yet to win a set, displaying the growth coach Adam Hughes’ side still required.
Friday against No. 17 Purdue, the Terps were able to change that. But after taking the second set to even the match, the Boilermakers ended any chance of an upset, dropping Maryland, 3-1 (25-21, 23-25, 25-20, 25-13).
In the first set, Maryland (12-9, 3-6 Big Ten) made 10 errors, eight unforced, and hit just .083. On the other side, Purdue made just one unforced error and hit .364.
The Boilermakers (16-4, 5-4) looked to be in control in the first set, building an 18-11 lead. While the Terps battled back at the end of the frame, they were unable to overcome their miscues, dropping the set, 25-21.
The Terps’ statline did not improve much in the second set. They hit just .159 and made seven errors. Despite that, the Terps closed the frame on a 6-1 run, taking the set 25-23 to tie the match.
In the third set, the Boilermakers used a 7-0 run to establish an 11-6 lead. But the Terps battled back, ending their comeback with six consecutive points to take a 16-14 edge. From there, the teams traded points until Purdue ended the frame on a four-point run to secure the frame, 25-20.
The fourth set was all Boilermakers from start to finish. Purdue rushed out to a 10-5 lead and never looked back, finishing the match on a 9-3 run to take the set, 25-13.
The Boilermakers’ star outside hitter Sheridan Atkinson was a force on both sides of the ball. She ended the match with 16 kills and 3 blocks. Outside hitter Blake Mohler also played a stellar match, with 11 kills and four blocks.
The Terps’ offense was led by outside hitters Liz Twilley and Erika Pritchard, who both had 17 kills. It was Twilley’s third consecutive match with double-digit kills. Pritchard added 13 digs for her second straight double-double.