Feline Faceoff: Penn State Nittany Lions vs. Northwestern Wildcats


Welsh-Ryan Arena. Photo courtesy of Wikipedia Commons.

The Match: Penn State (16-4; 6-3 Big Ten) vs. Northwestern (15-5, 5-4 Big Ten)

Where and When: Evanston, IL, 8:00 p.m. E.T.

Media Coverage: GameTracker; CBS All Access (Subscription)

Match Snapshot:


Northwestern head coach Keylor Chan and Penn State head coach Russ Rose have something in common: they’d both like their teams to be more consistent.  After last night’s 3-2 loss to Ohio State in Evanston (22-25, 25-19, 25-23, 24-26, 11-15), Chan had this to say:

We were too inconsistent tonight, and in the end that is what cost us.  It is something we have been working on, and there were times tonight where we looked like we were making strides. But there were other times that showed how much work we have left to do. It’s a tough loss to take, especially the way we lost, but now we just have to learn moving forward.

The loss dropped the Wildcats into a 4th place tie with Purdue, and sets up tonight’s showdown with 3rd place Penn State.  Against the Buckeyes, Northwestern was led by 6-3 Sr. MB Naomi Johnson (10 kills, 8 blocks and a career-best 5 service aces), 6-2 RS So. OH Madalyn Shalter (who also posted 5 services aces, which also was a career-best — Northwestern  had 12 aces in the match, more than doubling Penn State’s Wednesday night total of 5 against the Buckeyes), 6-0 Fr. OH Stephanie Holthus (14 kills, 7 digs and 2 blocks), and Gr. MB Sabel Moffett (10 kills and 3 blocks).   6-1 Sr. S Elyse Glab totaled 52 assists. Chan will be looking for more of the same from these five against the Nittany Lions — with just a bit more consistency.

Defensively, 5-7 So. L Julie Chin’s  15 digs led Northwestern, with Shalter  adding 13 digs, and 6-0 Jr. OH Alex Ayers  totaling 9 digs.

2010 Northwestern Volleyball Roster
No.   Name Pos.   Ht.   Year Hometown High School
1   Holthus, Stephanie OH   6-0   FR Burlington, Ill. Central
2   Gray, Gabrielle S/OH   5-10   FR Cincinnati, Ohio Sycamore
3   Johnson, Naomi MB   6-3   SR Bloomington, Minn. Kennedy
5   Chrystal, Kathryn MB   6-1   RS SO Crystal Lake, Ill. Crystal Lake Central
6   Chin, Julie LIB   5-7   SO Naperville, Ill. Naperville North
7   Gray, Brittani OH   6-0   RS SR Cincinnati, Ohio Sycamore
8   Turner, Maria DS   5-10   SO Dallas, Texas Mansfield Legacy
9   Shalter, Madalyn OH   6-2   RS SO Ottawa, Ohio Ottawa-Glandorf
10   Ayers, Alex OH   6-1   JR Playa Del Rey, Calif. Marymount
11   Glab, Elyse S   6-1   SR Chicago, Ill. Resurrection
13   Gallagher, Mary Grace LIB   5-5   JR Atlanta, Ga. The Lovett School
14   Dutchman, Katie MB   6-0   FR Del Mar, Calif. Torrey Pines
15   McNaney, Jenna DS   5-6   FR Long Beach, Calif. Wilson
16   Kaelin, Christina OH   5-10   GS Louisville, Ky. Assumption
17   Moffett, Sabel MB       GS Temecula, Calif. Chaparral

Here are video highlights (or lowlights, depending on your point of view) courtesy of the Big Ten Network, from Northwestern’s 3-0 loss to Michigan State on October 10th in East Lansing.  More evidence of how difficult it is to win on the road this year in the Big Ten (are you listening, Penn State?):

And, in perhaps a better example of the kind of consistency Keylor Chan would like to see from his Northwestern team, here are highlights (again, courtesy of the Big Ten Network) from Northwestern’s 3-1 victory over Minnesota at Welsh-Ryan on October 10th:

     Penn State

Penn State is coming off an impressive 3-0 victory over Ohio State (25-22, 25-21, 25-18) Wednesday night, in which the Nittany Lions were led offensively by 6-5 Sr. Opp. Blair Brown (13 kills), 6-3 Sr. MH Arielle Wilson  (9 kills, 2 blocks) and and 6-1 Fr. OH Deja McClendon (9 kills, 9 digs).  5-6 So. S. Kristin Carpenter totaled 35 assists with 8 digs (leading Penn State to a .309 attack %), followed by 5-9 Sr. L  Alyssa D’Errico’s 8.  Penn State held Ohio State to a .202 attack % for the match.

2010 Team Roster

NumberName PositionEligibilityHeightHometownState/Nation
1Ariel Scott

MHFr.6-5RidgewoodNew Jersey
2 Katie Kabbes OHJr.6-5RaleighNorth Carolina
3Fatima Balza MHSr.6-3MeridaVenezuela
4Jessica Ullrich DSSr.5-8WinfieldIllinois
5Kristin Carpenter S/DSSo.5-6MechanicsvilleVirginia
6Maddie MartinOHFr.6-2TampaFlorida
7Arielle Wilson MHSr.6-3BroadviewIllinois
8Erica Denny
9Blair Brown MH/OppSr. (RS)6-5 Purcellville Virginia
10Marika Racibarskas SSo.6-0ChathamNew Jersey
11Darcy Dorton

12Alyssa D'Errico L/DSSr.5-9ByronNew York
13 Megan Shifflett DS/SJr.5-6Falls ChurchVirginia
14Cathy QuilicoL/DSSr.5-1Thousand OaksCalifornia
15Maggie HardingDSFr.5-6State CollegePennsylvania
16Katie Slay
MHFr.6-6RaleighNorth Carolina
18Deja McClendon

19Krosby Pabst DSFr.5-7Long BeachCalifornia
22Mikinzie MoydellSFr.6-0Parker Colorado
23Ali LongoDSFr.5-6ChatfieldColorado