No. 11 Wisconsin (11-4 Big Ten, 19-6 overall) won their rematch against Michigan (6-9, 16-10) 25-20, 25-19, 25-19 at Cliff Keen Arena in Ann Arbor, Mich., sweeping the Wolverines for the second time in five days.
With this win over Michigan, the Badgers extended their conference winning streak to seven games and have swept their last four opponents. In that span, UW has only lost two sets.
"We played a really good, solid team twice in five days," UW Head Coach Kelly Sheffield said. "It's a team that's well-coached and has really good athletes. To beat them in six straight sets, you certainly don't anticipate that."
Once again, UW dominated Michigan offensively as the Badgers hit .295 (42 kills - 11 errors - 105 total attempts) compared to Michigan, who hit .103 (33-22-107). Sophomore Kelli Bates had a match-high 14 kills and recorded a season-high hitting percentage of .400. Junior Haleigh Nelson tallied 10 kills while freshman Tionna Williams and sophomore Lauryn Gills each had seven.
On defense, the Badgers outblocked Michigan 13-7, tying their season high. Nelson led the Badgers with eight blocks, including two blocked solos. Bates and Williams each had five blocks.
“The thing that I like about Haleigh is that she's having a really strong match every single night," Sheffield said. "Mentally, she's just in a place that's really good and she's taking the game plan but also reading what is going on during the match."
UW also outdug the Wolverines 45-43. Junior Lauren Carlini tallied a match-high 14 digs and had 36 assists to notch her 11th double-double of the season. Senior Taylor Morey tallied 12 digs.
UW got off to a quick start, leading 12-7 before Michigan tied the first set at 14-14. Then, with the score tied at 16, UW went on a 3-0 run sparked by a hard swing from Lauryn Gillis. A Bates kill brought the score to 24-0 followed by a Michigan error allowed the Badgers to win the first set.
The Badgers led 8-5 early in the second set. Back-to-back kills by Bates and a service ace by Morey led to a 7-2 Badger run which gave UW a 16-9 lead.
Michigan led a furious comeback to cut the UW’s lead to 21-18. Two straight kills by Bates ended Michigan’s comeback and gave UW a 23-18 lead. A Nelson swing and a kill by Gillis gave the Badgers a two set advantage.
The third set was a hard fought battle, with the Badgers leading 11-8 before Michigan cut the deficit to one. Two block solos and a kill by Nelson gave UW a 14-10 lead.
A Gillis swing sparked a 6-2 UW run before Michigan won two straight points. However, a swing by Nelson and a Bates kill gave the Badgers their fourth straight sweep.
The Badgers take on Iowa Saturday at the UW Field House at 7 p.m.
UWBadgers.com contributed to this report.