No. 6 Nebraska overpowers Maryland volleyball, 3-0

Katie Myers rises for a kill attempt during Maryland volleyball's 3-2 win over Princeton on Sept. 14, 2019 at Xfinity Pavilion. (Tyrin Gray/The Diamondback)

With Maryland volleyball down just two late in the first set, Nebraska outside hitter Lexi Sun notched back-to-back service aces — the first deflecting off defensive specialist Maddie Naumann and the second bouncing off defensive specialist Samantha Burgio.

The two quick points doomed the Terps in the first frame, and the team never had another opportunity late in a set Friday to steal one from the No. 6 Cornhuskers.

Traveling to Lincoln, Nebraska, for their final match of the year against a top-10 team, Maryland again struggled against a ranked foe, folding in straight sets (20-25, 15-25, 18-25).

Naumann got the nod at libero for the third straight match in place of Allegra Rivas. The sophomore transfer from Miami averaged more than four digs per set between the two matches last weekend.

Maryland continued its trend of competitive starts early on against the Cornhuskers. A service ace from middle blocker Katie Myers knotted things at 14, and the first set remained close until a 6-2 run from Nebraska ended the frame.

Myers was a bright spot once again for the Terps. She came into the match ranked third or higher in the Big Ten in aces per set, blocks per set and hitting percentage. In a season the hasn’t quite gone as planned for Maryland, Myers has continued to dominate the stat sheet in her second full year with the team.

The 6-foot-2 redshirt sophomore from Westerville, Ohio, tallied two kills in the Terps’ hard-fought first set, finishing the match with a .333 hitting percentage while the team hit just .167.

Coach Adam Hughes’ squad never seemed to have a chance in set two. The team continually fell behind, and then a service error from Burgio gave Nebraska its 25th point and a 2-0 lead in the match.

Nebraska, led by coach John Cook, is preparing for another NCAA tournament run after finishing as the national runner-up a season ago. As a result, its offense was more or less flawless, hitting .359 in the sweep.

Setter Nicklin Hames flexed the offensive efficiency as she sent one of her three kills down on Maryland’s side to open the third set. Nebraska breezed through the rest of the frame, coming out on top, 25-18, and handing the Terps their 14th conference defeat of the season in 19 tries with one match left on the slate.

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