🏐 Kansas Volleyball Set to Embark on European Tour

LAWRENCE, Kan. – The Kansas Volleyball team will travel to four countries and playing six exhibition matches as part of a European Volleyball Tour that will span from May 22 – June 3.

As part of the tour, the Jayhawks will visit Austria, Hungary, Italy and Slovenia, playing twice against the Hungary U20 Team in Budapest, twice against separate opponents in Maribor, Slovenia, and twice in Italy to conclude the trip.

Led by five-time Big 12 Coach of the Year Ray Bechard, Kansas returns several key members of its 2023 team, which finished 24-6 and placed second in the Big 12 with a 14-4 record. The Jayhawks earned a No. 4 seed in the NCAA Tournament, advancing to the second round. Among the top returners for Kansas are All-America setter Camryn Turner, a senior from Topeka, Kansas, and three other 2023 All-Big 12 selections in Ayah Elnady, London Davis and Raegan Burns.

“I think it’s unique when you have a chance to get your whole roster together over an 11-day period where you get to compete five or six times,” Bechard said of the upcoming trip. “This opportunity is something we’ll take full advantage of, not only from the volleyball side of it but from the connection side of it. We’ll get the opportunity for our players to spend time with each other on a level they wouldn’t normally get to do and we’ll get to play some very competitive volleyball and see a part of the world we wouldn’t typically have the opportunity to go to. There’s so much upside to the opportunity. We’re very appreciative of the University of Kansas and the athletic department for encouraging us to make events like this happen.”

Bechard will have all 19 members of his 2024 team on the trip, including six freshman who make up the highest-rated recruiting class in program history. The signing class of 2024 is ranked No. 1 in the Big 12 and as high as No. 5 in the nation. Among the newcomers are Zoey Burgess (Alpine, Utah), Kenzie Dean (Johnston, Iowa), Heidi Devers (Shawnee, Kansas), Ellie Moore (Darien, Connecticut), Grace Nelson (River Forest, Illinois) and Reese Ptacek (Prescott, Wisconsin).

“I’m so excited for our foreign tour because we are getting to travel the world together and play volleyball,” Turner said. “I can’t think of anything better than that.”

“I couldn’t be more excited to travel and experience new places with the team – especially with all of our newcomers,” senior Caroline Bien added. “This is such an awesome opportunity for us, and for most of us, this is our first time in Europe, so I’m looking forward to seeing new places, experiencing different cultures, and eating lots of local food!”

“I feel very fortunate to be able to experience this once in a lifetime trip with some of my closest friends,” senior Bryn McGehe said. “The place that I am looking most forward to going is Lake Como.”

Match Schedule
Subject to change

May 24 – vs. Hungary U20 Team (Budapest, Hungary)
May 25 – vs. Hungary U20 Team (Budapest, Hungary)
May 28 – vs. Slovenia U20 Team (Maribor, Slovenia)
May 29 – vs. Mladost Zagreb (Maribor, Slovenia)
May 31 – vs. B1 Volley Modena (Modena, Italy)
June 2 – vs. Italian Federation Team (Milan, Italy)