Straube comes through in clutch for No. 12 Cyclones

Zach Gourley

The ISU volleyball team is now 9-0 for the first time in school history after beating North Dakota State twice this weekend.

After dispatching the Bison in a three-set sweep Friday in a match that lasted just an hour and 11 minutes, the No. 12 Cyclones were pushed to the brink by that same team less than 24 hours later.

“I was a little worried playing them on Saturday, playing a team twice in a row can be difficult because the loser has a chance to make adjustments,” said ISU coach Christy Johnson-Lynch. “I thought we looked a little fatigued on Saturday, so that had me worried”

With the team struggling at times against the pesky NDSU squad on Saturday, junior middle blocker Jamie Straube stepped up with one of the best performances of her career.

Straube had a career-high 19 kills, while hitting at a .325 clip, to go with one solo block and three block assists.

When asked about team leadership, Straube’s name was the first mentioned by Johnson-Lynch.

“We’ve seen her take over matches and that’s really exciting, and we’ve been asking that of her and now she’s put herself in a position to do it,” Johnson-Lynch said of Straube. “She did it at Florida and she certainly did it against NDSU on Saturday. We had to thank Jamie afterward for taking over and winning it for us.”

One of the biggest differences between this season and last season for the Cyclones has been their ability to win matches that go into the fifth and final set, where they have won two already this season. In 2010, the Cyclones were 0-2 in five-set matches.

Straube said a new attitude and approach has helped her when everything is on the line.

“I just want to stay aggressive, I felt like last year there were situations where I kind of got tentative, so one of my big things this year is to always stay aggressive, always stay composed,” Straube said. “I don’t want to get tentative in situations this year, that was a big regret from last year.”

The No. 12 Cyclones will be back in action Tuesday in Cedar Falls at 7 p.m. to take on No. 15 Northern Iowa.