Illinois Defeats Loyola-Chicago in Four Games
Sept. 16, 2003
Champaign, Ill. -
Illinois enjoyed its return home tonight, defeating the Loyola Ramblers in four games by the score of 30-27, 30-21, 23-30, 30-22 in front of 1,027 fans at Huff Hall. The win extends the Illini's winning streak to seven straight games and improves the Orange and Blue to 8-1 on the season.
Illinois relied on its defense tonight, holding the Ramblers to an attack percentage of just .069 for the match, while outblocking Loyola in dominating fashion 16-to-7. Junior libero Lauren Harks recorded a season-high 18 digs in the match, helping the Illini outdig the Ramblers 60-53.
Senior middle blocker Shelly O'Bryan spearheaded the Illini attack from the middle. She hit .400 for the match with 10 kills. Senior outside hitter Melissa Vandrey led the Illini with match-high 13 kills while Lisa Argabright joined the attack as well registering 11 kills. Rachel VanMeter also reached double-figures in kills with 11.
"I liked the effort we showed defensively tonight," Head Coach Don Hardin said. "I thought we were a bit inconsistent on offense, which is understandable because this team is still learning about itself and coming together. But whatever we lacked on offense, we more than made up for it with our blocking and determination on defense."
Illinois heads to Indianapolis this Saturday, Sept. 20 to take on Butler at 4 p.m. CT in the first of five consecutive road matches for the Illini.