Nov. 30, 2013
WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - The No. 20 Boilermakers sent their five-woman senior class off of Belin Court in style with a five-set thriller over No. 19 Michigan State in front of a sold-out crowd of 2,633. The 19-25, 25-20, 25-22, 22-25, 18-16 win was Purdue's fourth in a row.
Rebarchak and junior Val Nichol paced the offense with 15 kills apiece. Rebarchak hit at a match-high .517 clip with no errors in 29 swings, while also adding five blocks. Nichol rounded out a double-double with 26 assists and also added a career-high four aces. Sophomore Annie Drews chipped in 12 kills, while junior KiKi Jones added seven. Griffin and sophomore Sam Epenesa posted five kills apiece.
Defensively, Cramer led the way with 18 digs followed by Fox (17) and Davis (11). Davis wrapped up her seven double-double of the season with 27 assists. Jones led the way at the net with six stuffs followed by Rebarchak (5) and redshirt freshman Faye Adelaja (4).
Michigan State led Set 5 8-4 at the changeover, but the Boilermakers charged back to take a 13-11 lead and fought off the Spartans to take the match at 18-16 on their fourth match-point attempt. Purdue led 3-2 after two kills by Epenesa, but MSU turned the tables with a 6-1 run. The Boilers scored eight of the next 10 points after the turn, including a pair of blocks by Adelaja and an ace by Nichol, to go ahead 12-10 and force the Spartans to use up both of their timeouts. Trailing 13-11, MSU tied it up. A Jones kill gave Purdue's its shot at the match, but a hitting error kept things going. Nichol added a pair of kills to set up chances two and three, but the Spartans answered each. A net violation made it 17-16 Boilers, and an MSU hitting error sealed the win. Rebarchak had five kills and the Boilers put up five stuffs in the final stanza.
The Boilermakers scored first in Set 1, but after that it was nearly all Michigan State. The Spartans went up 7-3 and forced Purdue's first timeout and went on to a nine-point edge at 22-13. The Boilers mounted a late comeback, with four of the next five points, including three MSU miscues. A Spartan kill made it 24-17. Putaways by Nichol and Drews kept the set going, but a Lauren Wicinski kill capped the stanza at 25-19. Nichol had four kills in the set.
The Boilermakers used a 13-4 midset rally to pull off a 25-20 come-from-behind win in Set 2. Nichol, Rebarchak and Drews had four kills apiece and Purdue held MSU to a .148 hitting effort in the stanza. The teams split the first 14 points, but the Spartans scored five of the next six to take a 12-8 lead. Purdue rallied to tie the score at 15 as Drews took over at the net with four kills. Jones and Nichol also chipped in. MSU went up 16-15, but a 6-0 run including three stuffs by Jones made it 21-16 Boilers. The teams traded points over the next six serves, leading to a 24-19 score. A Spartan service error clinched the win for Purdue at 25-20.
The Boilermakers squeaked out a 25-22 win in Set 3, holding off a late Spartan rally after leading the stanza from start to finish. Purdue jumped out to a 9-4 edge, including back-to-back aces by Nichol. A kill by Rebarchak made it a six-point game at 11-5. MSU cut the margin to three at 13-10, but Purdue used a 9-5 run to vault ahead 22-15. Kills from five different players speckled the rally. A kill by senior Katie Griffin and a Spartan miscue put Purdue up 24-17, but Michigan State scored five straight, holding off Boilermaker set point chances to narrow the gap to two at 24-22. Nichol ended it with her fourth putaway of the stanza.
The Spartans turned the tables with a 25-22 Set 4 win in a stanza which they led from beginning to end. Purdue tied the score at 4-4 and 7-7, but found themselves down 17-10 shortly thereafter as five errors piled up for the Boilermakers. Purdue called timeout and scored nine of the next 12 to slice the margin to one at 20-19. Four blocks, including two assists each by Adelaja, Jones and Rebarchak, and two kills by sophomore Sam Epenesa aided in the rally. MSU went up 22-19, but a Spartan miscue and Epenesa kill made it 22-21. A kill and a block put the Spartans on the hill, but a Rebarchak kill kept the set going at 24-22. A hitting error gave Michigan State the set to send the match to a decisive fifth set. Rebarchak had five kills in the stanza.
The No. 20 Boilermakers (20-11, 11-9 Big Ten) now await their NCAA Tournament fate. The NCAA Selection Show will take place at 9:30 p.m. ET Sunday on ESPNU.