No. 6 Kansas volleyball visits TCU Saturday
Notes Match Notes (.pdf)
FORT WORTH, Texas – No. 6 Kansas volleyball visits the hometown of All-American setter Ainise Havili looking for another Big 12 road victory when facing TCU on Saturday evening in Fort Worth at 5 p.m. Central.
The Jayhawks (16-2, 5-1 Big 12) enter the weekend on a four-match winning streak after sweeping Kansas State on Wednesday in Lawrence. Kansas features the top defense in the Big 12 — limiting opponents to a .140 hitting percentage — paired with a dynamic offense which leads the league in kills per set (14.3) during Big 12 play.
TCU (10-6, 3-3) is looking to rebound after its mid-week bye. The Horned Frogs have lost two-straight matches on the road to Baylor and Kansas State. Boasting quality wins over Duke, North Carolina and Iowa State, TCU checks in with a No. 26 ranking in the RPI this week.
The match will be televised on FOX Sports Southwest, also available online through FOX Sports GO. The Jayhawk Radio Network will carry live audio of the match on KUAthletics.com/radio.
Kansas leads the all-time series with TCU, 7-2, including a 7-1 mark during Big 12 Conference regular season play. Last season, Kansas swept the Horned Frogs in both home and road matches. KU’s last loss in the series was in five sets on Nov. 1, 2014.
LAST TIME OUT
Senior middle blocker Tayler Soucie set the tone early by recording four blocks during a 9-0 run in the first set against in-state rival Kansas State. The Jayhawks went on to sweep K-State, 3-0 (25-15, 25-20, 25-23), for the 12-straight home victory. Junior outside hitter Madison Rigdon led the Jayhawks with 14 kills. The Jayhawks recorded a hitting percentage above .300 for the second-straight match with a .340 clip during the nationally-televised ESPNU production. K-State entered the night with the second-best hitting percentage in the Big 12 (.260), but KU’s stout defense and elite passing held the Wildcats to a .190 clip.
One-third of the Kansas volleyball roster will be making a trip to their home state on Saturday. KU features five Texans, including Fort Worth native Ainise Havili.
Kelsie Payne (Jr., Austin)
Jada Burse (Fr., DeSoto)
Ainise Havili (Jr., Fort Worth)
Zoe Hill (Fr., Houston)
Madison Rigdon (Jr., Pflugerville)
WAIT NAMED SENIOR CLASS CANDIDATE
Senior libero Cassie Wait is one of 30 NCAA volleyball student-athletes selected as candidates for the 2016 Senior CLASS (Celebrating Loyalty and Achievement for Staying in School®) Award. With a business degree in-hand, Wait has started the progress of earning her juris doctorate degree from KU’s School of Law this fall, all while balancing her role as a starter and senior leader for the Jayhawks. Wait earned her undergraduate business degree in just three years (May 2016) from The University of Kansas with a 3.9 GPA. She is a two-time Academic All-Big 12 First Team honoree and member of the University of Kansas Honors Program.
The 30 candidates will be narrowed to 10 finalists later in the regular season, and those 10 names will be placed on the official ballot. Ballots will be distributed through a nationwide voting system to media, coaches and fans, who will select one candidate who best exemplifies excellence in the four Cs of community, classroom, character and competition. The Senior CLASS Award winner will be announced during the 2016 NCAA Division I Women’s Volleyball Championship in December.
JAYHAWKS’ FORMIDABLE DEFENSE
Kansas leads the Big 12 in four defensive categories – hitting percentage allowed (.140), kills allowed (11.11), assists allowed (10.43) and aces allowed (0.58). KU’s opponents have recorded a hitting percentage below .200 in 16 of 18 matches this season, including three with a negative hitting percentage (under .000). In the Jayhawks’ only two losses this season, their opponent has hit over .300.
SETS: LEADS AND DEFICITS
When winning the first set, Kansas is 14-0 this season. But the Jayhawks have also shown resiliency after not starting strong during conference play. Kansas has lost the first set in three Big 12 matches but have come back to win two of them – against Baylor (Oct. 1) and at Iowa State (Oct. 5).
With a 50-15 record in sets this season, Kansas has the highest set winning percentage in the Big 12 (.769).
Kansas’ largest margin of victory in a set this season is 17 points, which has occurred twice with 25-8 wins over Texas Tech (Oct. 5) in the first set and Chicago State (Sept. 2) in the second set. The Jayhawks have double-figure margin of victories in 15 sets this season.
In the seven sets that have been decided in extra points, Kansas has a set record of 5-2. Three of KU’s extra-point sets have been in the first set (2-1).
RACKING UP THE DUBS
KU’s 46 wins since the start of the 2015 season ranks tied for second in NCAA Division I volleyball during that period. The Jayhawks have the same number of wins as Nebraska since last season; Western Kentucky leads with 50.
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