AMES - The Iowa State volleyball team has adopted a flair for the dramatic.
The No. 18-ranked Cyclones went to five sets for the second night in a row, surviving No. 24 North Carolina to advance to the Sweet 16 of the NCAA tournament with a 25-22, 18-25, 23-25, 25-16, 15-13 victory Friday night at Hilton Coliseum.
Iowa State (22-7) will head to next weekend's regional in Berkeley, Calif., after winning a program-record 12th straight match.
"What a battle," said ISU head coach Christy Johnson-Lynch. "North Carolina is such a great team. What a fun team to play, they are great competitors."
North Carolina led two sets to one but couldn't close out the Cyclones in the fourth. ISU hit .343 in the fourth to send the match to a deciding fifth set.
There were six ties in the final set, with back-to-back ballhandling errors for UNC providing the final two points for Iowa State.
Tenisha Matlock led ISU with 12 kills, Andie Malloy had 11, while both Mackenzie Bigbee and Victoria Hurtt had 10. Alison Landwehr finished with 40 assists, and Kristen Hahn notched 28 digs. Matlock added four solo and four assisted blocks.
Paige Neuenfeldt paced North Carolina (26-6) with 17 kills.
Nebraska 3, UNI 0
LINCOLN, Neb. - Fourth-ranked Nebraska won the final match in its fabled NU Coliseum, sweeping Northern Iowa to advance to the Sweet 16 of the NCAA tournament, 25-21, 25-16, 25-21.
The Cornhuskers (25-6) hit .371 as a team to move past the second round of the NCAA tournament for the 29th time in 31 postseason appearances. Morgan Broekhuis led Nebraska with 10 kills with no errors on 16 attempts (.625), and both Gina Mancuso and Hannah Werth had nine kills. Lauren Cook racked up 42 assists.
Nebraska advances to the Omaha Regional for next Friday's Sweet 16.
Macy Ubben, an AGWSR graduate, led Northern Iowa (25-10) with eight kills, two service aces and two block assists. Amy Braun and Megan Lehman both contributed seven kills and Shelby Kintzel had six. Setter Molly Turk totaled 29 assists. Candice Burk had 11 digs and Ubben added nine.