Kansas to Open Homestand Against Nebraska-Omaha
Oct. 3, 2011
LAWRENCE, Kan. –For the first time since Labor Day weekend, the University of Kansas volleyball team will host back-to-back home matches, beginning Tuesday night at 6:30 p.m., when the Jayhawks welcome non-conference foe Nebraska-Omaha to the Horejsi Family Athletics Center.
Kansas (11-4, 0-3) will look to rebound after treading into unknown territory last Saturday at Baylor. The Jayhawks’ 3-1 loss to the Bears marked the only time this season that Kansas was defeated by an unranked opponent. In only four losses on the year heading into Tuesday night’s contest, all but one of them has been at the hands of a Top-20 team.
Tuesday’s match will also break up an intense Big 12 conference schedule. When Monday’s weekly AVCA Division I Top 25 Coaches poll was released, six of the nine league schools are on the poll or receiving votes. Additionally, all nine schools in the elite volleyball conference are carrying a .650 winning percentage or higher.
FOLLOW THE HAWKS
The match will be webcast live on Jayhawk All-Access (kuathletics.com/AllAccess) free of charge with Kyle West calling the action. Fans can also track the Jayhawks on GameTracker or by following JayhawkVball on Twitter.
KANSAS (11-4 Overall, 0-3 Big 12)
A loss to Baylor on Saturday didn’t stop the Jayhawks from putting up a long list of positives on the road. Kansas held late leads in the first and fourth sets, while winning the second one to display the Jayhawks’ ability to hang with their competition. KU now turns its focus on closing out sets, and possess plenty of weapons able to help the team do so.
Three different Jayhawks recorded career-best nights in Waco, including a brilliant defensive performance by everyone on the floor. Sophomore libero Brianne Rileyset the tone with a personal best 34 digs, her first 30-dig match of the year. She now leads the league in conference-only matches with 5.50 digs per set.
Additionally, redshirt sophomores Caroline Jarmoc and Catherine Carmichael established new career-highs with 16 and 10 kills, respectively. Jarmoc’s .318 hitting percentage checks in at No. 8 in the Big 12, while she and fellow middle blocker Tayler Tolefreehave each other tied for the third-place spot in blocks in the Big 12 (1.22 bps).
The two Jayhawk middle blockers rank in the NCAA’s top 50 in the latest stat rankings, as both are tied for 41st (1.22). In the most recent NCAA stats rankings (10/2), Kansas checked in at No. 25 in the country in blocks per set as a team (2.67). That ranks third in the Big 12 behind Texas Tech and Texas.
Last weekend, the Jayhawks also received outstanding performances from senior outside hitter Allison Mayfield and sophomore setter Kara Wehrs. Mayfield recorded her fourth double-double of the season with 17 kills and 11 digs, while Wehrs posted her fifth with 42 assists and 13 digs. A true team effort, five different Jayhawks tallied double-digit digs, a feat that hasn’t happened since Oct. 29, 2009 against Oklahoma.
Mayfield continues her tear through her senior season. She put up a solid 17-kill effort at Baylor to hold down a No. 2 ranking in the Big 12 in kills and points per set, averaging 4.24 kps and 4.66 pps.
NEBRASKA-OMAHA (4-16 Overall, 0-1 Summit League)
The Mavericks snapped an eight-match losing skid during a successful weekend at the Washburn Lady Blues Classic, defeating Dallas Baptist 3-2 (25-19, 19-25, 23-25, 25-18, 16-14) and Central Oklahoma 3-0 (25-23, 25-15, 25-16) at Lee Arena in Topeka.
Senior libero Angie Reicks starred for UNO, breaking the school career digs record with 31 digs for the day. Reicks now tops the all-time digs chart with 1,789 in four seasons as the Mavericks’ libero.
Offensively, junior outside hitter Natalie Ebke had an impressive day, knocking down 21 kills against Dallas Baptist and 16 against Central Oklahoma. She leads the team with 231 kills on the season, good for 2.89 per set. The Mavs come in hitting at a .133 attack percentage as a team.
On the defensive side, senior middle blocker Brittany Hanssen leads the team with 0.98 blocks per set, while Reicks checks in with a team-best 3.89 digs per set.
Kansas jumps right back into Big 12 Conference play when Texas A&M comes to the Horejsi Family Athletics Center, Saturday, October 8. The team’s annual “Jayhawks for a Cure” match is scheduled for a 6:30 p.m. start.