Three Big Takeaways: Iowa State loses to No. 15 Baylor on the road


Daniel Jacobi II

Iowa State freshman Maya Duckworth takes the court against Texas Tech on Nov. 12, 2022.

Iowa State volleyball had an opportunity for another top-25 win Wednesday night.

The Cyclones came two points away from forcing a fifth set with No. 15 Baylor. The Bears survived the Cyclone upset threat and completed the win in four sets.

Wednesday night’s four sets were decided by a combined 18 points.

Baylor Blockers

With the score 25-24 in the fourth set, Baylor’s Elise McGhee and Malloy Talbert blocked Iowa State’s Mariah Mitchell’s attempt. The double-block on match point gave Baylor the win, the set and the match.

It was the 12th total block of the match by the Baylor defense.

Baylor’s Kara McGhee led the match with seven blocks to go with 11 kills on 21 attempts. Elise McGhee finished the match with six blocks against the Cyclone attackers.

Overall, the Cyclones were limited to a .193 hitting percentage. Iowa State made 28 attack errors on 140 attempts.

Iowa State blocker Alexis Engelbrecht scored a career-high 12 kills against the Baylor defense. She passed her previous career high of 11 scored earlier this season.

Home-state hero

Iowa State freshman Maya Duckworth has been great for Iowa State in her first season of collegiate volleyball.

When returning to her home state of Texas, she’s been even better.

Wednesday night, Duckworth led the Cyclones with 14 kills on 37 swings. The Iowa State freshman is the latest Big 12 Newcomer of the Week and has secured double-digit kills in each of her last three games.

One week ago, Duckworth posted 10 kills while playing against the No. 1 ranked Longhorns. At TCU on September 24, Duckworth had another double-digit match. She scored 10 kills in the Cyclone loss to the Horned Frogs.

At Texas Tech on October 21, Duckworth found the floor for 11 kills. The Iowa State newcomer has been in double figures each of the four times she has traveled to Texas for a match.

Big 12 standings

Only two matches remain for Iowa State volleyball before the end of the season and the start of the NCAA tournament.

With the loss on Wednesday night, Iowa State lost ground in its standing in the Big 12 conference landscape.

The Cyclones, with a 9-5 conference record, are now tied for third with TCU in the conference standings. TCU will face Kansas State and Oklahoma before the season ends on Nov. 26.

Iowa State will next face Kansas and finish the season at home with Oklahoma on Nov. 23.