The 14th-seeded Nebraska volleyball team’s run through the NCAA Tournament came to an end late Saturday night in Alaska Airlines Arena, as the Huskers fell to upset-minded BYU 3-0 (21-25, 20-25, 21-25) in the Seattle Regional Final.
The Huskers finished the season 23-10 and came up one match shy of the NCAA Semifinals for the third straight season. Nebraska has been in four regional finals since its last NCAA Semifinals appearance in 2008 but has been unable to advance each time.
After upsetting No. 3 Washington on Friday to snap the Huskies’ 34-match home win streak, the Huskers couldn’t muster the same performance on Saturday to top the Cougars.
BYU (29-4) entered the NCAA Tournament ranked 12th in the nation but was unseeded. The Cougars reeled off a second-round win over No. 11 Arizona and a Sweet 16 win over No. 6 Florida State on Friday before knocking off the Huskers on Saturday. BYU will take on No. 2 Texas in one NCAA Semifinal in Oklahoma City, Okla. next Thursday. The other semifinal pits top seed Stanford against fifth-seed Penn State.
Amber Rolfzen led the Huskers with 11 kills. Kadie Rolfzen had 10 kills and 15 digs for her fourth double-double of the NCAA Tournament. Kelsey Fien added nine kills. Senior setter Mary Pollmiller capped her Husker career with 38 assists for a career total of 5,230, which ranks fourth among current DI setters. Justine Wong-Orantes had 22 digs in a solid defensive effort.
On Friday, Washington’s amazing season ended in the NCAA round of 16, and 14th-seeded Nebraska pulled off the stunning upset, 20-25, 25-20, 25-22, 29-27. The Huskies saw its 34-match home win streak and national title chase come to an end too soon.