Big Ten 2023, News.

Mosher Illinois

Mosher has registered over 400 assists in Illinois' first 12 matches (Photo: Illinois)

Brooke Mosher had a tremendous freshman season with Illinois, being the team’s second-best scorer, but in 2023, she will help the Fighting Illini in the challenging Big Ten women’s volleyball conference in a different capacity.

After displaying great ability to score points at the collegiate level, she’s now tasked with arguably an even major role in the team’s offense, having moved to the setter position.

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Playing setter is nothing new to Mosher, who before starting her college career has spent a lot of time in the position. When she joined Illinois, however, she was asked to play outside hitter due to several teammates getting injured and thrived, earning a Big Ten All-Freshman Team selection.

Despite her success as a hitter, she felt confident about getting back to setting ahead of her second season with the Fighting Illini.

“I’ve played setter for the majority of my life and I think that gives me more confidence,” Mosher reflected. “It's something I've been looking forward to. I think the biggest change is really just making myself a little bit more of a leader. I had been playing basically every position my whole life, so doing that my whole life really helped a lot. And then last season, I just really kind of went for it. That's all I thought. I didn't really think about it too much, I just told myself to just go for it.”

Mosher’s return to the setter position has been nothing short of great as the sophomore has produced 441 assists in the team’s 12 first matches of the season. Better than that, she registered double-doubles of assists and digs on six occasions and was in spectacular form last Sunday, when Illinois topped Michigan State in the tie-breaker to secure their first Big Ten victory in the season and she contributed season-high 46 assists and 17 digs.

According to her teammates, Mosher is also thriving in other aspects of the switch, such as developing a strong connection with her hitters and stepping up into more of a leadership role.

“I think Brooke, she's a great teammate,” senior outside hitter Raina Terry reflected. “No matter what position she was in, she's done a great job. We're trying to figure out everything, figure out the timing and figure out these little tweaks that you have to make, especially with a faster set. You just have to talk to your setter and she has to talk to me. And I think we did a great job of that. I've definitely noticed her talking a lot more in the gym, and she's getting pretty fiery and getting after it.”

Mosher’s first season as a setter for Illinois continues this weekend, when the team plays two more Big Ten home matches, facing Penn State on Friday and Iowa on Saturday. The second duel, set to begin at 18:00 local time (23:00 UTC), will be streamed live for VBTV subscribers around the world.

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