RCW: Inside Volleyball 3.7
Get a quick look inside your favorite Kansas Jayhawk programs each week with Rock Chalk Weekly’s Inside Sports pages. Notable statistics, quick hits and the top social media posts get every Jayhawk fan up-to-speed and ready for another week of thrilling competition.
Number BY THE NUMBERS
Junior outside hitter Madison Rigdon has recorded three-straight double-doubles entering Wednesday’s match at Iowa State.
Notes QUICK HITS
- After losing its first Big 12 match to No. 5 Texas last week, No. 6 Kansas (13-2, 2-1 Big 12) got back on the winning track with a four-set victory over Baylor on Saturday in Lawrence. Junior outside hitter Madison Rigdon led the Jayhawks with her third-straight double-double of 20 kills and 13 digs, while KU out-blocked Baylor – the Big 12’s leader in blocks – 8.5 to 5.5.
- UP NEXT: Kansas travels to Iowa State on Wednesday for a 6:30 p.m. Central time first serve on FOX Sports Network. Despite KU’s recent success against the Cyclones – winning four of the last five matches – KU is just 10-28 all-time in Ames. Kansas ends this week with a special Saturday in Horejsi Family Athletics Center while facing Texas Tech at 4 p.m. Central. The match serves as the annual Jayhawks for a Cure celebration, while also welcoming back a host of former student-athletes for Alumni Weekend.
- JAYHAWKS TAKE A KNEE: Prior to Saturday’s match against Baylor, the Jayhawks paused and kneeled – as one team – before the national anthem for a moment of reflection on social injustice in today’s culture. Afterwards, the entire team continued its practice of honoring the United States and her servicemen and servicewomen by standing as one for the Star Spangled Banner. Kansas head coach Ray Bechard noted to members of the media after the match that “it has been something our team has had a lot of dialogue about” before Saturday, and that “each of them will have an individual action plan that they can carry out to improve the Lawrence community moving forward.”
- TOP-10: Kansas advanced two spots to No. 6 in the AVCA Coaches Poll on Monday. The Jayhawks have been ranked in the top-25 for a program-record 21-consecutive times dating back to last season, including 17-consecutive times in the top-10. The Jayhawks debuted the season with a No. 5 preseason ranking and finished 2015 with a No. 4 ranking.
- ELITE DEFENSE: Last season Kansas led the nation in kills per set and ranked fourth in hitting percentage. Although the offense remains potent this season, it is KU’s defense that in making headlines in 2016. The Jayhawk protection, led by senior middle blocker Tayler Soucie in the front row and senior libero Cassie Wait in the back row, is holding opponents to a Big 12-leading .138 hitting percentage, which ranks sixth in the country. KU has held opponents to a hitting percentage under .200 in all but two matches this season and has reached at least eight blocks in five-straight matches. Perhaps key to KU’s defensive efficiency are solid back-row passers, who have only given up a conference-best three aces since the start of Big 12 play.
- BIG 12 LEADERS: Senior libero Cassie Wait, a first-year law school student-athlete, leads the Big 12 in digs per set (5.06) and junior outside hitter Madison Rigdon leads the Big 12 in aces per set (0.56). As a team, Kansas leads in hitting percentage allowed (.138) and aces per set (1.55).
- BECHARD RECORDS: Kansas head coach Ray Bechard improves to 336-230 (.594) in his 19th season at KU. Since 2012, the Jayhawks are 114-28 (.803) under Bechard.