MILWAUKEE – Senior Hannah Pekarek had a match-high 11 kills to lead the MSOE women's volleyball team to a 25-20, 25-21, 25-22 sweep of Illinois Tech Saturday afternoon at the Kern Center.
The Raiders (8-12, 2-5 NACC) were facing off with the Scarlet Hawks (3-12, 1-6 NACC) for the first time as conference foes, kicking off a rivalry between the similarly-minded schools.
Junior Sarah Williams added seven kills of her own and was one of three players with at least four blocks. She and freshman Quinn Borchert had five each while senior Elsey Kohlmann finished with four. Senior Shelby Borchardt backed up the defensive effort with 17 digs in just the three sets.
Taylor Burton led Illinois Tech with eight kills while Alyssa Minor and Karen Marrufo-Zubara had seven kills apiece.
The match was streaky throughout for both teams as there were 22 streaks of runs of three points or better against just 23 instances of consecutive side outs. These runs kept the score close until the Red & White could get the upper hand late in each game.
In the opener, MSOE broke an 18-18 tie with a 7-2 run to end the match, including the final four points. It was a 15-15 tie in game two that the Raiders broke with seven-straight points for a 22-15 lead. The visitors would answer with three-straight points but they were held off in the end.
Both teams looked to take control late in the third set. IIT erased an 18-15 deficit with a 6-0 run for a 21-18 lead. The Red & White would respond with five-straight points of its own and, after the Scarlet Hawks broke the run, it would notch the final two points to cap the match.
MSOE hit .127 on the day with just 18 errors against 31 kills in 102 attacks. Meanwhile, the block kept Illinois Tech off-balance, forcing the visitors into 28 errors against 31 kills and a .026 hitting percentage.
The Raiders return to the court Friday at Aurora.