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They Said It: Nebraska 3
Photo Credit: Aaron Babcock

They Said It: Nebraska 3, Penn State 2

December 09, 2016

Notable quotes from Nebraska’s 3-2 victory over Penn State.

Head coach John Cook on how the team turned it around after being down 2-0:

“I feel like we could have won the first two games. We could have been a 3-0 match. We were tentative. You guys that follow sports, when you’ve got to beat a team that’s got nothing to lose and you’ve already beaten twice, it’s like we’ve got to win the Big Ten again to get somewhere. There’s pressure and expectation that comes with that and we tightened up at the end of games one and two. I think what turned it was winning game three was so close. I think we relaxed and we became the one that was hunting rather than the one being hunted and we best when we’re that way.”

On Penn State:

“I don’t even know if they prepared for any other teams. They prepared for Nebraska. They were very well-prepared. There’s a reason they’ve won so many national championships. They know what they’re doing and like I said, it was a great match. They gave a great effort today.”

On understanding and overcoming Penn State as the match went on:

“Penn State became very predictable as the match went on. I mean, you pretty much knew where they were going to set [Ali] Frantti, Simone Lee, Haleigh Washington, so we knew where they were and we executed but I think the big thing in game five was we started with Annika [Albrecht]’s serve and got a nice little run there and then I think we just fed off of that. They had a hard time passing in game five. We really stressed them with our serve.”

On whether or not this was one of the best five-set matches he’s ever seen:

“I don’t know. It’s too close to the moment right now. We have another match tomorrow and that’s what I’m thinking about, but it’s Penn State. This is usually how we have matches with Penn State so I was expecting this tonight. Our team hasn’t been in that situation this year. Once at Minnesota, and so this is a great match for us to learn and build on, what we can do and how deep we have to be.”

Setter Kelly Hunter on whether or not the match against Penn State was fun:

“It’s definitely a roller coaster of emotions. The first two games were a little stressful. Obviously anytime you’re down 0-2, it’s going to be a little stressful. I think at the end with those last three games, we forgot the first two and just came out and our energy was awesome. Just the way we would celebrate was just so fun. I think when we do that, the bigger plays keep coming for us. We’re cheering because of the good plays, we’re making them happen. So, yeah… fun’s a good word, I guess.”

On winning the third set:

“I think that’s where we came back to our phrase of the year, like Amber [Rolfzen] said, point-by-point. So, if we didn’t win to get to 23, we couldn’t have gotten to 24. I think just trying to play point-by-point, we say we want to try to sellout and do everything we can to win one point and then we worry about the next one. That was our mentality there at the end, and obviously we sold out. We had two amazing plays just to tie it up and then we ended up with the win.”

Middle blocker Briana Holman on the atmosphere at the Bob Devaney Sports Center:

“I can say that I’ve never played at a place like the Devaney. Even from the first time that I played in the red-white scrimmage last year, I was in awe because, like I said, I’ve never played in this type of atmosphere. This is the furthest I’ve ever been in the tournament so like they said, I’m just taking it point-by-point and trying to be the best teammate that I can be but I’m super excited to see where we can go from here.”

Middle blocker Amber Rolfzen on blocking against Penn State:

“The biggest thing about blocking obviously [is] just being over. If you’re high, any good hitter can use a high block. I think we struggled a little bit at the beginning and we both just got into a blocking rhythm in the third, fourth and fifth game.”

On making the plays needed to win:

“I think it’s just one of those things that if you lose the point, you’re done. I kind of said it before that you go all-out whether you win the point or not but you know at the end of the day that you gave your best effort. I know when it was 23-24, Simone [Lee] was their big go-to and I knew they were going to set her so I just made a big explosive move and took away her go-to shot.”

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