Story by Ashley Beall
Photos by Joel Venzke
The Panthers swept the Bulldogs 25-19, 25-17 and 25-19.
Going into the game, the Bulldogs were 0-4 in Missouri Valley Conference play and are now 0-5.
The Panthers are a tough team this year. Earlier in the season, they defeated Louisville, who was ranked 17, and they also beat South Dakota State.
This is the third game in a row the Bulldogs have been swept in three sets.
The Bulldogs were led by Katie Allen and Tegan LaBerge, who each had seven kills.
“Katie and Tegan played well tonight,” said Drake head coach Darrin McBroom in a Drake athletics press release.
“They went up against talented, experienced players.
Another freshman, Samantha Meyers, had a good game in the back for us serving and passing the ball.”
The Panthers jumped ahead of the Bulldogs in the first set 7-2 and pulled away even further 17-9.
The Bulldogs fought back and brought the gap down to 17-14. Drake continued to play tough but ultimately UNI pulled away with a 25-19 win.
The Bulldogs struggled again in the second and just couldn’t close the gap.
They took their first timeout as they were trailing 13-7 and again took another timeout when they were behind at 18-7.
The Panthers eventually went on to win 25-17, and the Bulldogs had seven errors in the set.
In the third set, the Bulldogs were able to score before the Panthers, but their lead didn’t last, as the Panthers pulled away 10-4. Drake again took another timeout before UNI pulled away 22-13.
This prompted the Bulldogs’ last timeout of the game.
It gave the Bulldogs a burst of energy, as they fought, back scoring five out of the next six points and closed the gap to 23-19.
The Panthers then took a timeout and eventually shut the Bulldogs down 25-19.
“We played well at times tonight,” McBroom said.
“But we dug ourselves into early holes each set, and you can’t do that against great teams like UNI. I thought though we had some exceptional runs to get back into the match. Just need to be more consistent.”
Next up the Bulldogs play Southern Illinois at 7:00 p.m. on Oct. 11.