Kansas, Baylor to Play on ESPNU at 6 p.m.
LAWRENCE, Kan. – For the first time from the Horejsi Family Athletics Center, the Kansas volleyball team will play on national television when the Jayhawks play host to the Baylor Bears on ESPNU Wednesday at 6 p.m.
AROUND THE GYM
– Ticket Combo: Ticket to either volleyball or women’s basketball gains you access to both events
– Trick or Treat So Others Can Eat (SAAC): $3 admission with food donation
– Faculty Free Midweek Match: All KU faculty/staff/state employees free with valid ID
vs. Baylor (BU leads, 22-16): The Baylor-Kansas matchup is known for being closely-contested. In the nine years, the teams have split their season series eight times. A year ago, the Jayhawks defeated the Bears in five sets in Lawrence but fell in four in Waco. Earlier this month, Kansas traveled to Waco to face Baylor. Although the Bears hold a 14-4 advantage at home, KU defeated the Bears on their turf for the first time since Oct. 13, 2010. Baylor did, however, hand the Jayhawks their first set loss in conference play this season.
FOLLOW THE JAYHAWKS
Fans can listen to radio play-by-play on the Jayhawk Digital Passport, found under the Fan Central tab on KUAthletics.com. Subscriptions are available in daily ($2.95), monthly ($6.95) and yearly ($49.95) increments. Aaron Berlin will have the call.
ESPNU will televise Wednesday night’s contest with Sam Gore (PBP) and Jennifer Hoffman (color) providing the talent. Fans can also access the TV stream by going to ESPN3.com or visiting KUAthletics.com/ESPN. For more information on accessing Kansas video content, visit KUAthletics.com/TV. Fans can also monitor the action on Live Stats or by following @KUVolleyball on Twitter.
- Kansas suffered just its third home conference loss in the last two years, dropping a five set contest to Iowa State in its last time out (10/23). KU now finds itself in a three-way tie with ISU and Oklahoma for second place in the Big 12 standings.
- KU is looking to fend off back-to-back losses – an occurrence that’s happened only once in the last two years (vs. Arkansas on 9/7; at Creighton on 9/10).
- The Jayhawks fell out of the AVCA Top-25 Coaches Poll, released on Monday (10/28). KU was ranked No. 20 on the preseason poll (8/12), No. 23 (10/14) and No. 22 last week. Kansas is receiving votes this week (10/28), just one spot off the poll.
- KU moved to No. 16 on the latest NCAA RPI projections (10/28), which is the first time Kansas has been outside the RPI’s top-15 since 2011.
- Six different Jayhawks rank in the top-10 in six different Big 12 statistical categories – highlighted by the conference’s best setter in Jayhawk senior Erin McNorton.
- McNorton leads the Big 12 for the ninth-straight week with 12.30 assists per set. Only two setters in the country average more assists than McNorton: Caitlin Dotson, Lipscomb (12.94) and Molly Kreklow, Missouri (12.43).
- KU is the only team in the Big 12 with three players in the top-10 in both blocks and points per set. Redshirt senior middle blocker Caroline Jarmoc and junior outside hitter Chelsea Albers are on both top-10 lists.
- Jarmoc appears on four of the Big 12’s top-10 lists: hitting percentage (.314, 9th), kills per set (3.19, 8th), points per set (4.10, 4th) and blocks per set (1.30, 2nd).
- Kansas ranks in the top-20 in the NCAA in blocks (2.75, 19th NCAA), kills (14.46, 15th NCAA) and assists (13.57, 12th NCAA). The Jayhawks lead the conference in all three categories.
With her fifth block of the night, in the third set against Iowa State (10/23), redshirt senior middle blocker Caroline Jarmoc became the all-time career-blocking leader at Kansas. The Canadian native took down a record that has stood for nearly 15 years (Amanda Reves, 514, 1996-99). She and Reves are the only players in KU history to eclipse 500 career blocks. Jarmoc can now turn her sights on the Big 12 as 23 more blocks would put her on the Big 12’s top-10 career list.
Speaking of redshirt senior Caroline Jarmoc, the KU middle blocker is two solo blocks shy of tying Amber Woolsey (Texas A&M, 1996-99) for second all-time on the Big 12 career list.
Senior setter Erin McNorton needs four assists to hit the 1,000 mark for the season. After racking up 1,443 assists a year ago, McNorton will become the first Jayhawk since Nicole Tate (2008, 2009) to post 1,000 or more assists in two-straight seasons. In fact, only six Jayhawks total have ever rang up back-to-back 1,000-assist seasons.
ON THE POLL
Kansas dropped out of the latest AVCA Top-25 Coaches Poll (10/28), but is receiving votes directly outside of the poll (No. 26). The Jayhawks started the season in the preseason top-25 after ending 2012 on the poll for nine-straight weeks. KU has either been in the top-25 or receiving votes in 17 of the last 20 polls.
The NCAA moved Kansas to No. 16 in its latest RPI release (10/28). Although this marks the first time since 2011 that the Jayhawks’ RPI has been outside the top-15, Kansas leads the nation with three road wins over top-25 teams and four in the top-40. With more than a month still remaining in the regular season, KU has wins against Wisconsin (No. 9), Oklahoma (No. 19), Arizona (No. 24), Arkansas (No. 31) and Georgia (No. 32).
LAST TIME OUT: Kansas 3, Baylor 1
Fittingly, it was junior outside hitter Sara McClinton that drilled one of the final kills for Kansas, wrapping up her flawless performance that powered her team to a four-set win at Baylor inside the Ferrell Center on Oct. 5, 25-16, 23-25, 25-22, 25-17.
In one of the most back-and-forth all-time series in the Big 12, Kansas and Baylor have split their season series in eight of the last nine years. While KU’s win at Baylor marks the team’s first win in Waco since 2010 – it also marked the team’s ninth-straight win overall. Kansas’ second nine-match winning spree in as many years as KU’s current ties the fourth-longest in program history.
McClinton was front and center in Waco. The Omaha, Neb., native was phenomenal, breaking out for 23 kills and zero errors for a .676 attack percentage – both career highs. She also registered a block assist and a solo block to lead all players with 24.5 points.
BATTLE OF THE STAT SHEET
Against Iowa State (10/23), Kansas was out-blocked 12-10 – just the fourth time this season the Jayhawks were on the losing side of the blocking column. Despite the loss, the Jayhawks did out-hit (.275/.260), out-kill (72/66), out-assist (67/59) and out-dig (70/69) the Cyclones.
Senior setter Erin McNorton recorded 60 assists and 11 digs in KU’s last time out, her third double-double of the season and 14th of her career. Alongside her, junior outside hitter Chelsea Albers led the team with her career-high 23 digs against Iowa State (10/23). Combined with her 14 kills, Albers posted the sixth double-double of her career – all occurring this season. Redshirt senior Caroline Jarmoc is the only other Jayhawk with a double-double this year (kills/blocks vs. UMKC).
Against Iowa State (10/23), Kansas pulled its usual comeback feat against Iowa State – but only temporarily. After falling behind two sets to one, KU hit for a blistering .500 attack percentage in the fourth set to tie the match, 2-2. Even in the fifth set, KU found itself trailing, 4-1, but used a 7-2 run to swing the lead in favor of the Jayhawks. An unlikely turn of events for the comeback kids, KU went on to lose the set – and the match.
Senior setter Erin McNorton (996) leads all Big 12 setters by more than 100 assists. McNorton’s massive assist count surpasses every Big 12 team with the exception of her own (1,099), Texas Tech (1,044) and Baylor (1,024). At West Virginia (10/19) McNorton became the sixth player in KU history to collect 2,500 assists (2,568), despite the fact that she has started only 54 matches in her career.
RILEY IS CLIMBING
Senior libero Brianne Riley‘s 14 digs against Iowa State (10/23) moved her closer to sixth all-time on the Big 12 Conference’s career digs list (1,872), chasing former Missouri star Caitlynn Vann (1,997; 2007-10). Riley is now just the seventh player in Big 12 history to surpass 1,800 career digs. She also ranks third at 4.62 digs per set this season. More than just a conference highlight, Riley competes on the national scene, checking in at 16th in career digs among active players in the NCAA.
WOWING THE LEAGUE
While Kansas already leads the Big 12 in blocks (2.75), kills (14.46) and assists (13.57) on the overall statistic rankings, the Jayhawks’ numbers in conference-only play are unreal. In Big 12-only matches, Kansas leads in: assists (14.07), kills (14.90) and blocks (2.86).
Although the Jayhawks rank first in three of the Big 12’s primary statistical categories, service aces is not one of them. In fact, KU sits last in the league in aces per set – the good news? The Jayhawks allow just 0.69 aces per set, which ranks first in the league.
The first All-American in Kansas volleyball history, redshirt senior Caroline Jarmoc, eclipsed another Jayhawk milestone achievement. The Calgary, Alberta, Canada native is sitting at 258 kills in 2013. Jarmoc is now just the fifth player in program history to record 200 or more kills in four-consecutive seasons. She joined KU volleyball alums Emily Brown (2004-07), Josi Lima (2002-05), Mary Beth Albrecht (1996-99) and Judy Desch (1984-87) on the historic list.
SCOUTING BAYLOR (11-13 Overall, 3-5 Big 12)
Led by 10th-year head coach Jim Barnes, Baylor was picked to finish sixth in the Big 12 after finishing the 2012 season with a 20-12 record and a 7-9 mark in conference play. After recording their slowest start (2-6) since 1995, the Bears charged back to .500 by the start of the conference play with wins against Mississippi State and Houston. The Big 12 schedule did the Bears no favors, as Baylor suffered losses to nationally-ranked Iowa State, defending national champion Texas and then the Jayhawks to open conference play. BU comes to Lawrence in a much better spot than it was when KU was in Waco, after earning a pair of victories against Kansas State and Texas Tech last week.
Senior outside hitter and All-Big 12 Preseason selection Zoe Adom leads the team with 3.01 kills per set, putting her amongst the top-10 best in the Big 12. She was one of three different Bears with double-digit kills against the Texas Tech Red Raiders in their last time out (10/26). Heading up the offensive output, sophomore outside hitter Laura Jones led the team with 16 kills and 14 digs as the Adom/Jones duo leads the offense for the season as the only attackers with more than 200 kills. Sophomore middle hitter Adrien Richburg pounded out 12 kills and no errors in the latest win.
Five different Baylor starters have more than 130 kills to their credit and register more than two kills per set, despite the fact that the team ranks eighth in the league in kills per set (12.66) and last in assists per set (11.64). Sophomore setter Amy Rosenbaum moved up to fifth in the league with 9.98 assists per set – but freshman Mogan Reed took over the setting duties in BU’s back-to-back wins last week, recording 41 assists in each win.
Pulling double duty, Richburg lead the regulars with a .287 hitting percentage and 0.91 blocks per set. Freshman middle Tola Itiola is coming on strong lately, racking up 0.95 blocks per set in her 43 sets played. In the back row, sophomore libero Mackenzie Mayo paces the defense with 3.33 digs per set, but has plenty of help as four other Bears put up more than two digs each frame.
HEAD COACH RAY BECHARD
On Baylor finding its footing in conference play:
“They’ve won back-to-back matches. The win against Kansas State and the win at Texas Tech were both good victories. In both of those matches they dropped the first set and were pretty resilient to come back and win the next three. They are a group that is continually getting better and working hard. They will obviously be ready to go.”
On the Bears changing up the setter position:
“(Freshman setter) Morgan Reed is playing some now. (Sophomore setter Amy) Rosenbaum is very capable, but Reed has come in and done a good job with them so they’ve found something that is really working.”
On containing senior outside hitter Zoe Adom:
“She’s one of their keys, obviously, but it looks like they are getting some good balance from some of their other players. They’re hitting for a good percentage. They’ve had other people step up, too. At Texas Tech, Zoe had 10 kills, but she was third on the list behind (sophomore outside hitter) Laura Jones and (sophomore middle hitter) Adrien Richburg, who had 16 and 12. They’re trying to create balance. They know that Zoe can get them 15 or 20 kills on any given night, but it looks like they’re creating balance in other places.”
On eagerness to get on court after bye weekend:
“They’re excited to get back out there. The kids had a couple of days off, and the bye weekend came at a good time at the halfway point of our conference season. It would’ve been nice to have gone into that with a good win, but that wasn’t the case. Now we’ve got to figure out a way to get things started the right way the second time around.”
Kansas will head back to Texas for a Saturday matinee at TCU. First serve is set for noon.
KUAthletics.com: The official online source for Kansas Athletics, Williams Education Fund contributions, tickets, merchandise, multimedia, photos and much, much more.