Jayhawks Head to Arkansas for Final Non-Conference Tune-Up

Sept. 9, 2009


Kansas at Arkansas Tournament Game Notes Get Acrobat Reader

In its final tune-up before the 2009 Big 12 Conference season, Kansas volleyball will travel to Fayetteville, Ark., this weekend, Sept. 11-12, to participate in the Arkansas Tournament. The Jayhawks will face North Texas on Friday at 5 p.m. and then go up against Jacksonville State and Arkansas on Saturday at 1 p.m. and 7 p.m., respectively.

Live stats will be available for all matches at www.KUAthletics.com. In addition, the KU versus Arkansas match will have live video and radio.

About Kansas

Kansas placed second in its Jayhawk Invitational last weekend winning against Lipscomb and Creighton and falling to tournament champion Florida International. Junior Karina Garlington is eighth in the Big 12 averaging 3.61 kps. During the Jayhawk Invite, she led the team with 4.25 kps. Sophomore Allison Mayfield is next with 3.22 kps and also adds 2.13 dps, which is second only to junior libero Melissa Manda’s 3.57 dps. Senior Paige Mazour ranks ninth in the conference hitting at a .355 attack percentage while adding 0.74 bps. Also helping on defense along the front row is freshman Tayler Tolefree who is averaging 1.00 bps.

Scouting the Opponents

North Texas is still looking for its first win of the season as it is 0-7 overall. Junior Amy Huddleston is averaging a team-high 3.03 kps. Defensively senior Jessica Green digs up 3.07 balls per set. Sophomore Rachelle Wilson and junior Brittany Youman pace the team with 0.87 bps and 0.76 bps, respectively. Youman is also second on the team with 2.00 kps. North Texas is guided by 10th year head coach Cassie Headrick. She is 121-175 with the Mean Green.

Series Info: North Texas holds a 2-1 edge in the all-time series versus Kansas. The Mean Green defeated the Jayhawks in the teams’ first two meetings- 1977 and 1978- but Kansas swept the most recent meeting in 2004 during the Oral Roberts Classic.

Following a 3-2 win at Auburn Tuesday night, Jacksonville State is 6-2 overall and riding a three-match winning streak heading into the Arkansas Tournament. Brittany Whitton is averaging 3.19 kps followed by Caitlin Vorbeck with 2.84 kps. Vorbeck also has 11 service aces for 0.44 aces per set. Brooke Schumacher runs the Gamecock offense with 9.72 aps. On defense, Lauren Harkins averages just under five digs per set with 4.59. Rick Nold is 135-78 in his eighth season as head coach at JSU.

Series Info: This weekend will mark the first volleyball meeting between KU and JSU.

A young squad with 10 underclassmen, Arkansas defeated Tulsa Tuesday night and have won five its last six contests to take a 5-3 record into the weekend. Freshman Jasmine Norton leads the Razorbacks with 3.43 kps. Freshman Amanda Anderson is hitting a team-best .406 attack percentage and is blocking 1.03 bps along with Janeliss Torres, who also a freshman. Sophomore Phoebe Bautista averages 4.10 dps, the only Arkansa player digging up over two balls per set. In his second year at Arkansas, Robert Pulliza is 12-26 as head coach of the Razorbacks.

Series Info: KU trails 2-1 in its all-time series versus Arkansas. The Jayhawks have lost both of its meetings at home in five sets in 2003 and 2006 but won at Arkansas in 2004.

All-Tourney Team

Senior Paige Mazour and junior Melissa Manda were each named to the Jayhawk Invite All-Tournament Team last weekend. Mazour paced the Jayhawks with a .324 attack percentage and four service aces, while averaging 2.58 kps. Manda averaged a team-high 3.83 dps and had just one serve reception error in 12 sets.

Earlier in the season, junior Karina Garlington and sophomore Allison Mayfield were both named to the MTSU All-Tournament Team.

Block Party

Freshman Tayler Tolefree exploded for seven block assists against FIU last Friday, Sept. 4 and added five kills on a .444 attack percentage to earn her first career start in the team’s next match versus Creighton on Sept. 5. Tolefree’s seven blocks were the most by a Jayhawk since Oct. 27, 2007 when Natalie Uhart had 12 blocks.

Tate Moves Up Career Assists List

Sophomore setter Nicole Tate tallied 135 assists last weekend during the Jayhawk Invitational to move up the KU career record list. Tate moved into eighth with 1,334 career assists, just 506 shy of current Jayhawk Katie Martincich.

Up Next

Kansas volleyball will open its 2009 Big 12 Conference season on Sept. 16 at rival Missouri. Match time is set for 6:30 p.m. KU will then have the weekend off before hosting its conference home opener on Wednesday, Sept. 23 versus Oklahoma, also set for 6:30 p.m.