Mavericks volleyball upsets No. 9 SMSU and No. 24 USF

Jenna Peterson
Staff Writer

This past weekend, Minnesota State Mavericks volleyball team took on Sioux Falls and Southwest Minnesota State at the Taylor Center. 

The team created new plays, both offensively and defensively in order to have the outcome they did, which was a win on both nights. 

The Mavericks played against the Cougars Friday night and in the beginning, both teams were keeping the score even. That was until MSU was able to create an 8-1 run. The Cougars attempted to regain the lead, but the Mavericks were fighting hard and took the set 25-20.

The second set started off similar to the first, with neither team having a huge lead. In the middle of the set, the Mavericks were able to gain a 5-0 run and win the set 25-20.

The third and final set between the Mavericks and Cougars, resulted in MSU gaining a quick 8-3 lead. The Cougars were able to bring the heat and take a 5-1 run to get back in the set. After both teams fought back and forth for points, Minnesota State was up 23-22. Senior Haley Shimon blocked the set tying shot, bringing excitement to the Taylor Center and leading to a Maverick win 25-23. 

Senior Morgan Olson led all attackers with 13 kills and having a block, while Shimon finished the game with two blocks and eight kills. 

The Mavericks ended the game with nine blocks compared to the Cougars, who had zero.

On Saturday, the Mavericks took on Southwest Minnesota State and looking at the two team’s history, it seemed as if SMSU would take the game. That wasn’t the case, as the Mavericks continued their hard work from Friday’s game. 

Early on, the Mavericks built a 10-6 lead, due to the strength of the front line – anchored by senior Anissa Janzig. The Mustangs lost its balance and the Mavericks took the first set 25-16.

The second set started off a bit slower than the first, with a back and forth of two-to-three points for each team. Later in the set, the Mavericks began to put some plays into action, with strong kills from Olson and Jessica Nelson, to win the set 25-22.

The Mustangs wanted to prove they came to play in the third set, with a 5-0 run to slow down the Mavericks. Even though the Mustangs were in the lead, Mankato’s middle defense helped the team rally back with a 13-5 run, thanks to the help of Janzig’s blocks. 

After some trading of points, the Mavericks took the lead 23-17 and although the Mustangs tried to make a comeback, the Mavericks won 25-22.

Olson and Nelson led all players with 13 kills and Janzig finished the game with 5.5 blocks and four kills. 

Sophomore Dana Schindler set up the offense for the Mavericks and ended with 35 assists to lead all players. 

The team will next travel to Fayette, Iowa Tuesday night to play Upper Iowa.

Header photo: Minnesota State middle blocker Anissa Janzig (16) tips the volleyball during the third set of the match against Minnesota-Duluth at the Taylor Center Saturday, Sept. 28, 2019 in Mankato, Minn. (Mansoor Ahmad/MSU Reporter)

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