Kansas and Oklahoma Dig For the Cure Saturday

Oct. 16, 2008


Game Notes Get Acrobat Reader

For the third straight year, the University of Kansas volleyball team (8-9, 2-6 Big 12) will join in the fight against breast cancer with a Dig for the Cure match against Oklahoma (8-10, 4-6 Big 12) on Saturday, Oct. 18. The Jayhawks and Sooners are scheduled for a 7 p.m. match in the Horejsi Family Athletics Center.

Kansas will look to repeat its success from last year’s Dig For the Cure match as the Jayhawks picked up a 3-2 upset over then-No. 18 Oklahoma, while also raising over $4,000 for the Kansas City Komen Foundation.

Free live stats for this weekend’s contest are available on Kansas Athletics’ official website at www.kuathletics.com. In addition, fans can access live video streaming on the website for a subscription fee.

About Kansas

Kansas volleyball dropped a four-set match at Missouri Wednesday night as they fell just below the .500 mark to 8-9 overall and 2-6 in the Big 12. The Jayhawks, who are 4-4 at home this season, have two players contributing over 2.00 kps in conference matches led by sophomore Karina Garlington, who is fourth in the conference at 3.72 kps. Senior middle blocker Savannah Noyes is 10th during league matches swinging a team-best .319 hitting percentage. Freshman Nicole Tate runs the KU offense averaging 10.03 aps, fifth in the Big 12. Sophomore libero Melissa Manda is also in the conference rankings digging up a ninth-best 3.28 balls per set. Also contributing on defense is Natalie Uhart, a senior middle blocker, who leads the Jayhawks with 0.89 bps.

Head coach Ray Bechard is in his 11th season as head coach of the Jayhawks with a 169-152 overall record.

Scouting Oklahoma

Oklahoma picked up a 3-0 sweep of Colorado Wednesday to stop a four-match skid and improve to 4-6 in the Big 12 and 8-10 overall. The Sooners have not won a road match since Sept. 14, a 3-1 win over New Orleans, and have notched just one conference victory away from Norman. A trio of Sooners average over 2.00 kps in conference play. Caitlin Higgins is tops on the team recording 2.55 kps, while Francie Ekwerekwu is hitting a .261 clip, just less than her .292 hitting efficiency for the season. As a team, OU is third in Big 12 matches digging up 15.38 balls per set. Lacy Barnes leads the Sooners with 3.71 dps, eighth in the conference, followed by Higgins who adds 3.07 dps. Chrissy Disarro is sixth in the league averaging 1.03 bps.

Oklahoma is coached by Santiago Restrepo, who is 77-65 in his fifth year as head coach of the Sooners.

Series History

In a series that dates back to 1976, Oklahoma holds a 41-26 advantage in matches against the Jayhawks, including a 14-13 edge in contests played in Lawrence. Since the start of the Big 12 however, Kansas holds a 17-7 lead over Oklahoma and have won 10 of the 12 meetings in Kansas (lost in 1997 and 2006). Last season KU picked up a thrilling five-set victory on its home court to stop a three-match losing skid to the Sooners. Prior to 2006, the Jayhawks won nine straight.

Last Time Out

COLUMBIA, Mo. — For the sixth time this season, the Kansas volleyball team battled back from a two-set deficit to force an extended match, but not even a career-high 20 digs from junior Melissa Grieb could help KU overcome Missouri as the Jayhawks fell 3-1 Wednesday night.

Four Jayhawks finished with double figure kills led by Karina Garlington, who notched 17 along with 12 digs for her third double-double of the season. Natalie Uhart and Jenna Kaiser each added 12, while Brittany Williams chipped in 10. KU setter Nicole Tate also picked up a double-double during the match with 51 assists and 10 digs.

Dig For the Cure

Kansas volleyball will hold its third annual Dig for the Cure match Oct. 18 when they welcome Oklahoma to Lawrence. Fans are encouraged to wear pink to show support for the cause, while volunteers will be on hand to collect donations for the Kansas City Komen Breast Cancer Foundation. A pledge sheet can be downloaded from the KU volleyball home webpage at www.kuathletics.com. KU’s volleyball program has helped raise over $6,500 for the Komen Foundation.

RPI Rankings

In the latest RPI rankings released Oct. 13, Kansas finished in the top third coming in at No. 83 out of 329 Division I volleyball programs. All members of the Big 12 Conference were listed in the top 100.

Community Involvement

Members of the Kansas volleyball team visited local elementary schools this week to participate in the READ program. KU student-athletes go to local schools to read to children and encourage reading.

Quick Hits

» Oklahoma comes to Lawrence as an unranked team for the first time since 2005.

» Kansas has hit over .220 in its last two matches, the first time KU has recorded back-to-back contests of .220-plus hitting since Sept. 12 during the Wyoming Cowgirl Classic.

» The Jayhawks had two service aces at Missouri Wednesday marking just the third time this season KU has had less than three aces.

» Speaking of serving, Missouri committed just two service errors, tying a KU opponent low for this season.

» KU is hitting a .210 attack percentage in contests at home, up from its .188 clip on the road.

Up Next

Kansas will set out on a two-match road trip beginning at Baylor on Wednesday, Oct. 22 for a 7 p.m. contest. The Jayhawks then travel to Texas A&M on Saturday, Oct. 25. Match time with the Aggies is scheduled for 6:30 p.m.

Upcoming Promotions

Fans will receive free pink ribbons to wear during the Dig For the Cure match on Oct. 18. In addition, players will be available to sign autographs after the match.