OMAHA, Neb. — The University of Oregon volleyball team extended its greatest season in school history with a 3-1 NCAA Regional Final win over host Nebraska (26-7) on Friday, earning its first-ever Final Four invitation in school history.
After losing the first set, 25-15, the fifth-seeded Ducks (29-4) came back to win the next three sets at the CenturyLink Center, 25-22, 25-18, 25-17 over the fourth-seeded Huskers. The victory — the Ducks' first in three series meetings (and first since 1986) — cemented a bid to Thursday's NCAA semifinal in Louisville against top-seeded Penn State.
"This was a good win for us, but it's also just a step along the way to where we ultimately want to go," Oregon head coach Jim Moore said. "We knew that how we handled the atmosphere here was vital. I told the players before the match that the Nebraska fans are always some of the best in the country and certainly the most knowledgeable. They can take you out of a match, but we kept our cool, and as the match went on, we continued to apply more and more pressure defensively."
Offensively for Oregon, Pac-12 Player of the Year Alaina Bergsma rang up a match-high 23 kills to lead the team for the 22nd time this season.
Pac-12 Setter of the Year Lauren Plum logged 52 assists. The Poway, Calif., native also came away with 14 digs.
Sophomore outside hitter Liz Brenner followed closely behind in digs (18), and added nine kills. Her three blocks tied for the team high with freshman middle blocker Canace Finley.
Looking ahead, the NCAA semifinals will be held at 6:30 p.m. on Thursday in Louisville. The 32nd NCAA Championship will follow two days later on Saturday.
All three matches will be televised live by ESPN2 and ESPN3.com.