Fifteen-seed Oregon Volleyball (23-11) saw their season come to a close in Minneapolis on Saturday, December 8, dropping straight sets to seven-seed and reigning national champion Nebraska 25-22, 25-23, and 25-17 in the Elite Eight. Despite a tight first two sets, Oregon went into intermission down 2-0, a deficit the Ducks faced in eight winless matches this year. The Ducks and ‘Huskers were tied 20-20 in both sets, while Oregon held a 12-7 lead early in the second set, but Nebraska rebounded in large part thanks to two-time NCAA Tournament Most Outstanding Player Mikaela Foecke’s 16 kills (.400) and 13 digs. Oregon then faced Nebraska dominance in the third frame, as the Huskers led early and pulled away late for a no-doubt victory and spot in the Final Four.
The loss ends a banner year for second-year head coach Matt Ulmer, whose all-time record drops to 41-23. The former Carthage College setter led Oregon to just its second-ever Elite Eight and the program’s first since 2012. Now the Ducks must say goodbye to senior middle blockers Lauren Page and Sumeet Gill, three-time All-Pac-12 outside hitter Lindsey Vander Weide, and setter August Raskie, whose 11.71 assists per set ranked second in the Pac-12 and top ten in the NCAA heading into the weekend.
MATCH STORY (by Matt Tyra)
Nebraska Head Coach John Cook, Outside Hitter Mikaela Foecke, and Middle Blocker Lauren Stirvins
Oregon Head Coach Matt Ulmer, Middle Blocker Ronika Stone, and Libero Brooke Nuneviller