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Huskers travel to Rutgers for afternoon matches

The No. 4 Nebraska volleyball team swept Maryland 25-14, 25-21, 25-18 on Saturday night at the...
The No. 4 Nebraska volleyball team swept Maryland 25-14, 25-21, 25-18 on Saturday night at the Bob Devaney Sports Center.(1011 NOW)
Published: Feb. 11, 2021 at 3:32 PM CST
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The fourth-ranked Nebraska volleyball team heads to the East Coast for a pair of matinee matches at Rutgers this weekend. The two teams will square off at College Avenue Gym in New Brunswick at 3 p.m. CT on both Friday and Saturday. Both matches will be streamed on BTNPlus.com (subscription necessary). 

Husker Sports Network will broadcast all the Husker action on HSN radio affiliates, including 107.3 FM in Lincoln and AM 590 in Omaha. A live audio stream will be provided at Huskers.com and the Huskers app. John Baylor is in his 27th season doing play-by-play for the Husker volleyball program. Lauren (Cook) West, a former All-America setter for the Huskers, will provide color commentary.

About the Huskers

• Nebraska is off to a 4-0 start after sweeping Indiana twice on opening weekend and adding a pair of wins at home over Maryland last weekend. The Huskers had a Jan. 29-30 series with Northwestern postponed due to COVID-related issues in the Northwestern program. 

• The Huskers led the Big Ten in defense last season and so far this season have picked up where they left off,  holding opponents to .130 hitting to rank second in the conference.

• Nebraska leads all Big Ten teams in kills (14.46 per set), assists (12.92 per set) and service aces (2.00 per set). NU is showing a marked improvement in the aces column from last year, when the Big Red ranked 13th in league play in aces per set (1.00).

• The Huskers return every starter from last year’s 28-5 squad that reached the NCAA Regional Final against eventual national runner-up Wisconsin. 

• Senior middle blocker Lauren Stivrins and senior outside hitter Lexi Sun were AVCA All-Americans and All-Big Ten First-Team selections in 2019. Junior setter Nicklin Hames was also an All-Big Ten First-Team choice in 2019. Stivrins and Hames return to captain the Huskers for a second straight season. 

• Sophomore outside hitter Madi Kubik was the Big Ten Freshman of the Year in 2019 and, along with sophomore libero Kenzie Knuckles, was a member of the All-Big Ten Freshman Team.

• The Huskers added four newcomers during the offseason, including junior Missouri transfer Kayla Caffey. The middle blocker ranked ninth nationally with a .408 hitting percentage during the 2019 season. She joins three freshmen who are new to the program: middle blocker Kalynn Meyer, setter Anni Evans and defensive specialist Kaylei Akana. 

• Sun leads the Huskers with 3.38 kills per set with a team-high eight service aces as well as 2.31 digs per set. Kubik adds 2.92 kills per set and 1.92 digs per set with four aces.

• Stivrins is putting up 3.23 kills per set on a team-high .485 hitting percentage, which ranks second in the Big Ten Conference. She had 18 kills on 20 swings for an .850 hitting percentage last Friday against Maryland.

• Hames paces the Husker attack with 10.85 assists per set - second most in the Big Ten - and she chips in 3.00 digs per set with five service aces.

• Caffey has stepped in for the Huskers and contributed 2.22 kills per set on .342 hitting with 1.44 blocks per set. • Junior middle blocker Callie Schwarzenbach leads the team in blocks per set at 2.25. 

• Sophomore Riley Zuhn averages 2.62 kills per set on a .291 attack percentage, the best by a Husker pin hitter this season. She is also tied with Caffey for the team lead in blocks with 13 (1.00 per set).

Courtesy: Nebraska Media Relations