CHAMPAIGN — For the first time since the 2011 season, the No. 3 Illinois volleyball team is headed to the NCAA Volleyball Elite Eight.
The Illini won in a 3-0 (25-19, 25-21, 25-16) sweep of No. 14 seed Marquette on Friday at Huff Hall.
With the win, the Illini (31-3) pushed their win streak to 16 matches. They'll face a familiar foe at Saturday's regional final in No. 6-seeded Wisconsin. The game, at 3 p.m. in Huff Hall, will be for the chance to go to the NCAA Volleyball Final Four in Minneapolis on Dec. 13 and 15.
Junior Jacqueline Quade paced the Illini with a team-high 12 kills on a .267 hitting percentage, with classmate Ashlyn Fleming joining her in double figures with 10 kills on a .467 attack clip. Senior Ali Bastianelli and redshirt-junior Beth Prince each added seven kills in the win.
As a team, the Illini posted a .354 hitting percentage with senior Jordyn Poulter posting 38 assists to go along with six digs.
Defensively, freshman Taylor Kuper led the Illini with a team-high 12 digs, with sophomore Morgan O'Brienalso turning in eight digs and Bastianelli registering a team-high three blocks.