MINNEAPOLIS – Freshman outside hitter Liz Twilley led the Terrapins with 12 kills on .367 hitting as the Maryland volleyball team fell to No. 3 Minnesota in three sets Wednesday. The Terps (13-18, 3-14 B1G) fell to the Gophers (24-3, 16-1) by set scores of 18-25, 17-25, 14-25.
“Minnesota is playing great volleyball right now and they’re very confident,” head coach Steve Aird said. “I don’t think I prepared my team well enough to come out and compete with the No. 3 team in the country.”
The Gophers were the sixth consecutive ranked opponent for the Terps as they compete through a grueling conference slate. Minnesota ranks No. 1 in the NCAA’s RPI.
The Gophers took an early lead in set one. A block from MacGregor and Craigo and an Adreené Elliott kill helped keep the Terps within two points. Minnesota used a run to take a 19-12 lead but Hailey Murray and Elliott posted back-to-back kills as the Terps took a 3-1 run and pulled within four at 21-17. Angel Gaskin posted a late kill, but the Gophers used a 4-1 run to close the set, 25-18.
The Terps took an early 3-2 set two lead off an Elliott ace and a Murray solo block. Wicinski served as ace as Maryland took a 4-2 lead. The Gophers pulled ahead and used a 3-1 run to take a 12-9 advantage. Minnesota pushed ahead to set point, 24-16, before Elliott used a kill to extend the set. The Gophers were able to finish it, 25-17.
A pair of Gaskin kills helped the Terps take a 3-1 lead to start set three. Minnesota took a 5-4 lead but Maryland was able to tie the set five times to stay close. The Gophers took a 14-8 lead off a 5-1 run. MacGregor and Twilley notched kills as Minnesota continued to hold the lead, 20-12. The Gophers won the match with a 25-14 set win.
The Terps are back in action against No. 4 Penn State in State College, Pa., Saturday. Opening serve is set for 7 p.m. and the match will be broadcast on BTN Plus.
– Maryland –