Salute to Service: No. 11 Kansas volleyball hosts No. 23 Baylor on Veterans Day

Beginning in August 2017, fans will be allowed to bring only one clear plastic bag no larger than 12 inches by 6 inches by 12 inches or a one-gallon, clear, resealable plastic storage bag per person inside Kansas athletics events.

Fans will also be allowed a small clutch purse not to exceed 5.5 inches by 8.5 inches.

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LAWRENCE, Kan. – No. 11 Kansas volleyball plays host to No. 23 Baylor for a special Veterans Day top-25 matchup in which the Jayhawks will honor servicemen and women of the United States Armed Forces during the annual Salute to Service recognition.

SCHEDULE CHANGE: Noon first serve
Saturday’s noon first serve against Baylor is one hour earlier than originally scheduled. The Big 12 Conference approved the time change to accommodate Baylor’s travel plans.

Live video streaming of Saturday’s match will be available on ESPN3 with Jill Dorsey-Hall providing analysis and Leif Lisec calling play-by-play. Audio of the match will be available on and KU’s student radio station, KJHK-FM 90.7.

Kansas and Baylor meet for the 47th time in series history and the second time as top-25 opponents this season on Saturday in Lawrence.

Kansas has won nine-straight in the series with Baylor and hold a 24-22 all-time series lead. KU’s nine consecutive wins over BU is KU’s longest winning streak in series history.

In the Kansas-Baylor series, KU is 7-2 when nationally ranked; BU is 1-3 when nationally ranked. When both teams are ranked, KU is 1-0.

In head coach Ryan McGuyre’s third season in Waco, Baylor features two top-25 wins this season, including wins over then-No. 10 BYU in Hawaii and a victory over then-No. 19 Iowa State last Saturday.

Baylor leads the Big 12 in kills per set (14.55), while ranking second in both hitting percentage (.274) and defensive hitting percentage (.153).

Madison Rigdon recorded 18 kills on a .400 hitting percentage as Kansas defeated Baylor in three sets in Waco on Oct. 18. Kansas held Baylor to its lowest hitting percentage of the season (.088). On the offensive end, KU recorded an attacking clip of .308. KU’s defensive front line was led by sophomore middle blocker Zoe Hill’s match-high seven blocks.

Kansas notched its seventh-straight win in the Dillons Sunflower Showdown series by defeating in-state rival Kansas State on Wednesday night, 3-1 (14-25, 25-21, 25-15, 25-22). Kelsie Payne led KU with 14 kills and registered back-to-back blocks to give KU the last two points of the match in the fourth set. In addition to five blocks, Zoe Hill turned in a career-high 11 kills on a .529 hitting percentage. Ainise Havili notched her 20th double-double of the season with 37 assists and a match-high 21 digs. Allie Nelson added 18 digs in a defensive effort that held K-State to a .182 hitting percentage.

Kansas plays its program-record eighth top-25 matchup of the season on Saturday against No. 23 Baylor. This will be the 30th all-time top-25 matchup for Kansas, which has been ranked for 42-straight AVCA Coaches Polls. 

Kansas has won 12-straight matches in the month of November — the final stretch of the regular season before the NCAA Tournament begins. Since 2012, the Jayhawks are 31-7 in November, having reached at least five November wins in the last five seasons.

On Veterans Day, Kansas Athletics will be honoring members of the United States Armed Forces with its annual Salute to Service match. Marine Maj. Jake MacDonald will give the honorary first serve. Maj. MacDonald, a Boston native, has worked with the Kansas volleyball team for the last four years during preseason training with military-style team building activities called The Program. The former football student-athlete at Tufts University was commissioned as an officer in the United States Marine Corps and completed two combat tours in Iraq and a tour in Afghanistan. The Purple Heart recipient continues to serve our country in the Marine Corps Reserves.

Kansas and head coach Ray Bechard announced the signing of four high school seniors to National Letters of Intent this week, including two Under Armour High School All-Americans. Jayhawks added defensive specialist Lacey Angello (Lansing, Kan.), middle blocker Kailea Carrier (Olathe, Kan.), outside hitter and setter Camryn Ennis (San Antonio, Texas) and middle blocker Rachel Langs (Fairview, Texas). Second-team Under Armour All-American Ennis will be an early enrollee at KU starting spring 2018. Both Ennis and Langs are still playing in their respective high school state tournaments in Texas.

Kansas reached 20 wins with a victory at TCU on Nov. 4. It marks the sixth-straight and 16th time overall in program history the Jayhawks have reached 20 wins in a season.

Since KU’s streak of 20-win seasons began in 2012, the Jayhawks have a 151-34 record, good for a .816 winning percentage. From 2012 to 2016, KU averaged 26 wins per season. KU’s last six 20-win seasons have also included at least 10 Big 12 Conference wins.

The last two seasons have been the fastest Kansas has ever reached 20 wins, doing so in 21 matches in 2015 and 22 matches in 2016. In 2015, KU reached 20 wins with a four-set win at Iowa State (Oct. 28, 2015). Last season, Kansas reached 20 wins with a five-set victory over No. 2 Texas (Oct. 29, 2016).
Fastest ku teams to 20 wins

Kansas has a program-record four wins against teams ranked in the top 25 of the AVCA Coaches Poll this season. KU is 4-3 against ranked teams with wins over No. 13 Kentucky, No. 17 Purdue, No. 18 Iowa State and No. 24 Baylor. KU’s previous record of three top-25 wins was achieved in 2003 and 2012.

Since 2012, Kansas is 14-19 against top-25 opponents. Before 2012, KU was 14-101 against top-25 opponents.

Kansas is also 6-3 against teams currently ranked in the top-50 of the NCAA RPI. The six wins includes one top-10 victory and four top-25 victories.

Kansas has eight scoring runs of 7-0 or greater and 36 runs of 5-0 or greater this season. Senior defensive specialist Tori Miller has been the primary server during six of KU’s eight runs of seven points or more. The Jayhawks have a 5-1 record in matches featuring a KU scoring run of 7-0 or longer.

KU’s longest run of the season (10-0) occurred when Miller was at the service line. KU went on a 10-0 run at the end of a 25-16 fourth-set win over then-No. 18 Iowa State (Sept. 27); the Jayhawks won the match in five sets.

KU’s .264 hitting percentage this season is the second-highest clip in program history, only ranking behind KU’s 2015 Final Four team (.299). This season, Kansas ranks third in the Big 12 and 26th nationally in hitting percentage. 

Senior All-American setter Ainise Havili holds KU’s record for career assists with 5,051 entering Saturday’s match.

Havili passed Andi Rozum’s record of 4,772 in the second set against No. 5 Texas (Oct. 11) and finished the night with 50 assists. The Fort Worth, Texas, native broke the record as KU was facing a UT set point in the second set, 24-23. She guided her 4,773rd career assist to Jada Burse, who registered a kill to tie the set at 24.

Havili has started in all of KU’s 119 matches since her freshman season in 2014.

Havili ranks seventh on the Big 12’s career assists list. She is the only player on the Big 12’s top-10 list who has played her entire career in the 25-point set scoring era, which began in 2008.

In addition to Ainise Havili holding KU’s career assists record, fellow senior All-Americans Kelsie Payne and Madison Rigdon are on pace to rewrite KU’s record books this season.

Payne ranks first in career hitting percentage (.340), second in career kills (1,451) and 11th in career blocks (334). She now needs 32 more kills to tie the current record of 1,483 held by Josi Lima (2002-05). Last season Payne became the 15th Jayhawk to reach 1,000 kills — she is the only pin hitter in KU history with 1,000 kills and a hitting percentage of .300 or higher. On Sept. 15 against San Jose State, she became the 13th Jayhawk to reach 300 blocks.

Rigdon ranks ninth in career kills (1,203), third in career aces (132) and fifth in career attack attempts (3,503). Rigdon became the 16th Jayhawk to reach 1,000 career kills with 15 against Purdue (Sept. 8).

Havili is KU’s all-time leader in assists with 5,051 and counting. She also ranks sixth in career digs (1,266) and 18th in service aces (101). Havili became the 18th Jayhawk to reach 100 career aces against Texas (Oct. 11), which is also the night she broke the career assists record. She passed the 4,000-assist mark with 43 assists against Missouri State (Aug. 26) and became the first Jayhawk to pass the 5,000-assist mark with 51 assists at TCU (Nov. 4). The Fort Worth, Texas, native became the 14th Jayhawk to reach 1,000 career digs with 14 against NC State (Aug. 26).

Ainise Havili leads the Big 12 and ranks 12th in the nation in assists per set (11.61). Kelsie Payne ranks third in the league in both kills per set (3.81) and points per set (4.23). Madison Rigdon ranks second in the Big 12 in aces per set (0.28) and is right next to Payne at fourth kills per set (3.59) and fourth in points per set (4.18). Rounding out Jayhawks in the Big 12 stats rankings, Allie Nelson ranks second in total digs (420) and Zoe Hill ranks third in hitting percentage (.388).

During conference play, sophomore middle blockers Hill (.471) and Mmachi Nwoke (.423) rank first and second, respectively, in the Big 12 in hitting percentage.

Havili has the most assists by a Big 12 player in a match this season (63 at NC State, Aug. 26). Nelson has the most digs by a Big 12 player in a four-set match (28 vs. Missouri State, Aug. 26).

Kansas volleyball is ranked No. 11 in the AVCA Coaches Poll released on Monday, making it the seventh time in the last eight weeks the Jayhawks have held a No. 11 or No. 12 ranking in the poll.

Kansas has been ranked for 42-straight AVCA polls, including 40-straight with at least a top-15 ranking.

The Jayhawks have played seven matches against current top-25 teams this season with wins over No. 7 Kentucky, No. 21 Purdue, No. 23 Baylor and No. 24 Iowa State.

Four of the Big 12’s nine teams are ranked in the top-25 this week — No. 12 Kansas, No. 3 Texas and No. 23 Baylor and No. 24 Iowa State.

Kansas has earned six of the 11 Big 12 Offensive Player of the Week awards so far this season.

In the first three weeks of the regular season, Kansas took home the honor with Ainise Havili (Aug. 28), Kelsie Payne (Sept. 4) and Madison Rigdon (Sept. 11) honored by the league. Havili won the honor a second time on Oct. 2, followed by Zoe Hill’s first-career Big 12 weekly honor on Oct. 9. Rigdon’s second honor of the season was on Oct. 23.

KU’s six Big 12 Offensive Player of the Week nods are the second-most in program history, behind 2015’s seven honors.

Since the Big 12 began awarding offensive players of the week in 2007, there have been only three times when a team has earned three-straight Big 12 Offensive Player of the Week honors from three different players. Kansas has done it the last two times in 2013 and 2017.

Senior setter Ainise Havili has recorded an assist-dig double-double in 20 of KU’s 25 matches this season. The Jayhawks combine for 15 kill-dig double-doubles this season as senior outside hitter Madison Rigdon has 10 and senior right-side hitter Kelsie Payne has five.

Havili, Rigdon and Payne have all recorded a double-double in the same match three times this season — against Missouri State (Aug. 26), Iowa State (Sept. 27) and Texas (Oct. 11).

Kansas totals 137 career double-doubles on its current roster.

Since the start of the 2015 season, Kansas has the highest winning percentage among Power Five conference members and the third-highest winning percentage in all of NCAA Division I (.886). The Jayhawks are 78-10 in the last three seasons.

Kansas is 29-3 in the last 32 Big 12 contests.

KU’s road loss at No. 22 Iowa State (Oct.28) broke a 42-match Big 12 Conference winning streak against teams other than the perennial top-5 Texas Longhorns. The previous non-UT loss was a five-set road loss at TCU on Nov. 1, 2014. Kansas and Texas account for the last six Big 12 titles.

KU’s 19-match winning streak against Big 12 opponents ended with a five-set loss to No. 5 Texas (Oct. 11). It goes down in the record books as the longest conference winning streak in program history for the Jayhawks. The winning streak took place over a full calendar year, starting with a win over Baylor on Oct. 1, 2016, and ending on Oct. 11, 2017.

All eight of KU’s Big 12 winning streaks of four matches or longer have ended with losses to top-25 teams.

For the second-consecutive season, KU’s home court, Horejsi Family Athletics Center (1,300), has sold out its allotment of season tickets. Horejsi Family Athletics Center has sold out for 19-straight home matches.

Kansas hits the road for a Texas two-step next week. The Jayhawks face No. 3 Texas on Wednesday, Nov. 15 (7 p.m., LHN), then travel directly to Lubbock to face Texas Tech on Friday, Nov. 17 (6 p.m.).




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