Huskies travel to Kent State, Ohio this weekend

Volleyball Women | 26th of October

Story Links DeKALB, Illinois – The Northern Illinois University volleyball team will face the Kent State Golden Flashes and Ohio Bobcats on Friday (Oct. 28) and Saturday (October 29), respectively.

The Huskies (14-7, 7-4 MAC) come out of a road split against Toledo this past weekend. NIU dropped Friday’s game in two sets, but had a short memory the next day as the squad defeated Toledo in four sets.

Charli Atiemo (Milford, Mich./Farmington Hills Mercy) posted a career-high 19 kills and hit .390 to lead NIU in Saturday night’s win. On offense, Atiemo made 24 kills (3.43/set) all weekend and committed just five errors for 26 points (3.71/set). Katie Jablonski (Elburn, Illinois/Kaneland) posted back-to-back double-doubles and averaged 3.29 kills per set.

History with Kent State: NIU leads its all-time streak with the Golden Flashes (12-10, 3-8 MAC) by a margin of 32-10. The last time the pair met, the Huskies (25-22, 25-17, 25-19) won Kent State at home on October 29, 2021. Ella Mihacevich (Brunswick, Ohio/Padua Franciscan) and Nikolette Nedic (Willowbrook, Illinois/Hinsdale Central) led NIU with 10 kills each.

Scouting Kent State: Fourth in the Mid-American Conference East, the Golden Flashes lost four-on-one games but defeated Akron, Eastern Michigan and Miami (OH) in MAC play. Mackenzie McGuire and Savannah Matthews lead on the pin – they both average 3.12 kills per set and have combined 519 of Kent State’s 1,344 points this season. Erin Gardner leads the defense with 3.70 counts per set, while Lana Strejcek has 56 blocks so far. Kent State setter Alex Haffner averages 8.87 assists per set.

History with Ohio: NIU follows in its all-time series with Ohio (14-8, 8-3 MAC) 20-22. The last time the drag met, Ohio swept NIU (15-25, 23-25, 15-25) in the 2021 MAC tournament.

Scouting Ohio: Just one game behind front-runners Ball State and Bowling Green, the Bobcats are on a roll, having won the past four matchups. Center blocker Caitlin O’Farrell leads Ohio with 3.23 kills per set, ranking fourth in the league in kills and points. Sam Steele is fifth in the MAC in digs (4.45/set), while the Bobcats use two setters in Tria McLean (7.67 assists/set) and Parker Kwiatkowski (7.25 assists/set).

The Huskies’ appointment with Kent State is set for Friday with first service at 6 p.m. EST and will be broadcast live on ESPN3. NIU’s matchup with Ohio begins at 4 p.m. EST and will also air on ESPN3.


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