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    No. 3 Penn State puts on a show
    Rachel VanMeter had seven kills and four digs on Saturday.

    Rachel VanMeter had seven kills and four digs on Saturday.

    Nov. 12, 2005

    Champaign, Ill. - Illinois ran to a hot Penn State team on Saturday night at Huff Hall. A season-best crowd of 2,038 saw the Nittany Lions defeat the Illini 30-12, 30-11, 30-15. The Lions clinched at least a tie for the Big Ten crown with four matches remaining.

    "This was just a case of a potential Final Four team having an amazing run through the conference against a team that is beat up and struggling," said Illinois Head Coach Don Hardin.

    Penn State (25-2 overall, 16-0 in the Big Ten) was dominating in every phase of the game, out-blocking Illinois 14-3 and out-hitting the Illini .424--.020. That was the lowest hitting percentage for Illinois this season. Nicole Fawcett paced Penn State with 12 kills and a .571 hitting percentage. Christa Harmotto had 11 kills and hit .474. Penn State has just two losses on the season vs. then No. 3 Stanford and at Nebraska. The Lions are on an 18-match winning streak, having lost just three games in that stretch.

    Rachel VanMeter and Meghan Macdonald had seven kills apiece for Illinois (13-14, 4-12). Beth Vrdsky paced Illinois in digs with 13. Lizzie Bazzetta had 19 assists, while Meghan Maconald totaled two blocks.

    Illinois has four matches remaining in the season, hosting Purdue on Wednesday at 7 p.m. "After all the adversity we've been through, we still have a chance to pull out a winning season," Hardin said. "To do that would be quite amazing"

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