Undefeated Kansas to Open Home Schedule at Jayhawk Invitational
Aug. 31, 2011
Jayhawk Invitational Tournament Central
LAWRENCE, Kan. –One week removed from winning the Georgia Bulldog Invitational, the Kansas volleyball team will look to defend its undefeated record at the Jayhawk Invitational, Sept. 2-3.
Kansas (3-0) will welcome Belmont, Appalachian State and South Dakota State to the Horejsi Family Athletics Center for a rare home appearance in the month of September. After this weekend, the Jayhawks aren’t scheduled to play at home again until a Sept. 28 meeting with Iowa State.
When the Jayhawks debut at home this weekend, a new way to follow them will also make its first appearance. For fans unable to make it to HFAC, all matches will be webcast live on AT&T Jayhawk All-Access free of charge. Although the video stream has been in place for the previous six seasons, this year’s webcasts will feature an audio component. Kyle West will be on the call with several guest color commentators throughout the year, including 2007 Big 12 Sportsperson of the Year, Katie Martincich.
AROUND THE ARENA
-Friday: Schedule Card/Poster/Magnet Giveaway, Double Rock Chalk Reward Points
-Saturday: Schedule Card/Poster/Magnet Giveaway, Double Rock Chalk Reward Points, $3 admission with McNeese State football ticket
KANSAS (3-0, 0-0 Big 12 Conference)
Head coach Ray Bechardwas very pleased with the step forward his team took following three closely-contested sets against Florida A&M in the season opener. The Jayhawks returned the next day to overpower both Liberty and SEC foe Georgia to win the Georgia Bulldog Invitational. After hitting for a .267 average in the first match, Kansas came back to attack at a .387 clip against Liberty and .311 in front of Georgia’s 1,000+ crowd.
Senior outside hitter Allison Mayfield was named Tournament MVP after three stellar performances that included a career-best attack percentage (.484) against Liberty. She connected on 42 kills and committed only nine errors in her first weekend. Redshirt sophomore middle blocker Caroline Jarmocearned all-tournament honors after setting a new career high of her own, a .900 attack percentage off of a 9-of-10 effort against Liberty.
Sophomore Brianne Rileywas named the Libero of the Tournament for leading an impressive Kansas defense all weekend long. She collected 30 digs in Georgia, good for 3.33 digs per set. She also chipped in five assists and five aces, helping the Jayhawks enter the weekend with the most service aces per set (2.33) among the Big 12.
Riley also benefitted from the help of a potent first line of defense, led by Jarmoc’s conference-leading 2.11 blocks per set. The Jayhawks racked up 30 rejections over the weekend, averaging 3.33 blocks per set, second only to Texas in the Big 12 rankings.
BELMONT (2-2, 0-0 Atlantic Sun) | Friday, 12 p.m.
The Bruins opened their season by welcoming a challenging field to the Belmont Invitational last weekend. Belmont defeated Murray State in the season opener, 3-1, but fell to Western Kentucky and Sacramento State to close out the weekend. The only member of the Jayhawk Invitational field to play a midweek match, the Bruins swept Chattanooga on the road Tuesday evening.
Led by Atlantic Sun Preseason Player of the Year senior Maggie Johnson, the Bruins are at an attack percentage of .187 as a team. Johnson paces the offense with 64 kills on the year and 4.57 kills per set.
APPALACHIAN STATE (3-1, 0-0 Southern Conference) | Friday, 7 p.m.
The Mountaineers also hosted their season-opening tournament, going 3-1 in the process. ASU kicked off the year with wins against NC State, Kennesaw State and William & Mary, but lost to Charlotte in five sets.
Behind a career-best 31 kills from senior Anna Wagner, ASU earned a 3-1 victory over NC State in the season opener for both teams. Wagner enters the weekend with 76 kills to her credit, good for 4.47 kps.
Defensively, the Mountaineers are paced by junior libero Courtney Rhein, who accumulated 4.59 digs per set at home last weekend.
SOUTH DAKOTA STATE | (3-1, 0-0 Summit League) | Saturday 1 p.m.
The Jacks opened the season with back-to-back wins against Montana State, 3-1, and Georgia Southern at the Georgia Southern Invitational last weekend. SDSU bounced back from a 3-0 loss at the hands of Stephan F. Austin to defeat Jacksonville in the last match of the tournament, 3-1.
The Jacks are led by the reigning Summit League Player of the Year, junior middle blocker Kelli Fiegen. She rolled through the first weekend with 3.38 kills per set.
Kansas will hit the road for Cedar Falls, Iowa, for its third of four pre-conference season tournaments. No. 14 Northern Iowa will also welcome No. 11 Minnesota and St. Louis to the Northern Iowa Invitational, Sept. 16-17.