Sept. 8, 2010
Senior setter Jessica Yanz played for two seasons at Nebraska.
| Live Blog: Nebraska
DAYTON, Ohio --
No. 20 University of Dayton volleyball travels to Lincoln, Neb., this weekend to face two top-10 teams at the 2010 Ameritas Players Challenge. The Flyers begin on Thursday at 8 p.m. ET against No. 7 Nebraska at the Nebraska Coliseum.
The Challenge continues on Friday as Dayton faces No. 3 Illinois at 5:30 p.m. ET. On Saturday, competition moves to the Devaney Center where the Flyers face Western Michigan at 5:30 p.m. ET.
Coverage from Lincoln can be followed at DaytonFlyers.com with Michael Ivcic calling the action on the audio webcast. A live blog featuring exclusive video from coaches and players will also be available.
Ameritas Players Challenge
Location: Lincoln, Neb.
Arena: Nebraska Coliseum, Devaney Center
Tickets: huskers.com, 800-824-4733 ($9-$15)
Thursday – Nebraska Coliseum
Dayton at Nebraska, 8 p.m. ET
Friday – Nebraska Coliseum
Illinois vs. Western Michigan, 12 p.m. ET
Illinois vs. Dayton, 5:30 p.m. ET
Western Michigan at Nebraska, 8 p.m. ET
Saturday – Devaney Center
Dayton vs. Western Michigan, 5:30 p.m. ET
Illinois at Nebraska, 8 p.m. ET
ABOUT NEBRASKA (5-1)
The Huskers will play its first home match of the regular season in front of a sold-out crowd against Dayton ... Ranked second in the nation to begin the season, Nebraska’s only loss came to then-No. 13 Florida in five sets ... Nebraska advanced to the Omaha Regional Finals last season, losing to National runner-up Texas ... The Huskers lead the Big 12 in opponent hitting percentage (.125), third in digs per set (15.71), and third in blocks (2.67) ... Tara Mueller leads Nebraska in kills with 2.76 per set ... 12th-year head coach John Cook is approaching his 300th win at Nebraska, currently at 286-20.
Nebraska leads, 1-0. Nebraska eliminated a historic Dayton team from the 2003 NCAA Tournament in Lansing, Mich. ... UD, in its first NCAA Tournament in program history, defeated host Michigan State in the First Round before meeting the Huskers in the Second Round on Dec. 6, 2003.
ABOUT ILLINOIS (5-0)
Ranked number-one in the latest RichKern.com Poll ... Defeated then-No. 3 Texas in three sets last weekend in Austin, Texas ... Led by second-year head coach and former Illini assistant coach Kevin Hambly ... 2009 First Team AVCA All-American outside hitter Laura DeBruler paces Illini with 70 kills (4.38/set) ... Middles Erin Johnson and Johannah Bangert lead the Big Ten in hitting percentage at .509 (32-4-55) and .500 (33-5-56), respectively.
Tied 2-2 ... Last season Illinois knocked Dayton out of the NCAA Tournament in the Second Round ... Will be the fifth time in five seasons that UD has faced Illinois ... UD has won two of the last three meetings ... UD is 2-0 in five sets against Illinois.
ABOUT WESTERN MICHIGAN (6-1)
Since WMU’s only loss of the season at Ohio State in the Sports Imports Classic, the Broncos have won five straight matches – all in three sets ... WMU opened the season on UD’s home court (Frericks Center) against Arizona State in the Dayton Flyer Classic, but did not face Dayton ... Setter Sam Viox guides the offense with 11.78 assists per set ... Jessica Brown leads the Broncos in kills (73 – 3.17/set) and hitting percentage (.317).
WMU leads, 4-2. Western Michigan and Dayton will meet for the fifth time in the last five seasons on Saturday ... Last season, Dayton defeated the Broncos in three sets at the Bronco Invitational ... In 2008, WMU eliminated UD from the first round of the NCAA Tournament in Dayton ... Six of the seven matches, including this weekend, have been played at a neutral site.
‘CHALLENGE’ FEATURES NCAA TOURNAMENT SERIES HISTORY
Each team in the Ameritas Players Classic has faced Dayton in the NCAA Tournament in recent history ... In 2009, Illinois eliminated the Flyers from the Second Round of the tournament in four sets in Champaign, Ill. ... In 2008, Dayton’s first at-large bid in the tournament, Western Michigan defeated the Flyers in Dayton (Frericks Center) ... UD’s first meeting with Nebraska was in the Second Round of the 2003 NCAA Tournament in Lansing, Mich., losing in three sets.
It is the second consecutive week that Dayton has faced multiple ranked opponents in one location ... The Ameritas Players Challenge features three teams ranked in the AVCA Top-25: No. 3 Illinois, No. 7 Nebraska and No. 20 Dayton ... Last weekend’s Diet Coke Classic in Minneapolis, Minn., also featured three ranked teams: No. 8 Minnesota, No. 20 Dayton, and No. 22 Northern Iowa ... The Flyers hold a 1-1 record against ranked opponents this season.
FLETEMIER: A-10 DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK
Senior Lindsay Fletemier earned her third career Atlantic 10 Defensive Player of the Week honor after recording 20 blocks at the Diet Coke Classic in Minnesota ... The 6-foot-6 middle blocker leads the Atlantic 10 in blocks this season with 38 (1.78 per set) and has a streak of a least one block in 54 consecutive matches ... Fletemier registered nine blocks to hold No. 22 Northern Iowa to a .166 hitting percentage in a five-set victory ... In two matches on Saturday, she helped hold Baylor to a .096 hitting percentage in the Flyers’ four-set win with six blocks and nine kills ... Tallied 11 kills and five blocks against No. 8 Minnesota.
RECAPPING THE DIET COKE CLASSIC
Dayton went 2-1 at the Diet Coke Classic (9/3-4) hosted by Minnesota ... Sophomore Rachel Krabacher and senior Lindsay Fletemier were named to the all-tournament team ... Krabacher paced the Flyers in kills (38) and registered two double-doubles, while Fletemier posted 28 kills and 20 blocks through three matches... The Flyers started the weekend with a five-set win over No. 22 Northern Iowa, defeated Baylor in four sets, and lost to No. 8 Minnesota in three ... Dayton, UNI, and Minnesota all finished 2-1 with Baylor at 0-3 ... All teams in the field received votes in the AVCA Top-25.
SHEFFIELD APPROACHING 200 CAREER WINS
UD head coach Kelly Sheffield needs two wins to reach 200 career wins ... Sheffield began the season with 193 wins, and enters the week with 198 ... The third-year UD head coach became the quickest head coach in program history to reach 50 wins in the modern scheduling format, going 51-17 in his first two seasons at Dayton ... Sheffield spent seven years at Albany, compiling 142 wins and two NCAA Tournament appearances.
RECAPPING THE DAYTON FLYER CLASSIC
Dayton swept the field at the Dayton Flyer Classic, defeating Arizona State, Pittsburgh, and Virginia Commonwealth ... UD recorded a .302 hitting percentage and held opponents to a .067 rate. Similar trends were common throughout the weekend in blocks (32.5-to-11.0), service aces (15-to-7), kills (127-to-86) ... Reigning All-America middle Lindsay Fletemier totaled 18 blocks through three matches ... Senior setter Jessica Yanz – a transfer from Nebraska – notched a career-high of 42 assists against Arizona State on Saturday.
NOVACEK A FINALIST FOR THE LOWE’S SENIOR CLASS AWARD
Senior Becky Novacek was selected as one of thirty NCAA women’s volleyball student-athletes to be a candidate for the first-ever Lowe’s Senior CLASS (Celebrating Loyalty and Achievement for Staying in School)Award for volleyball ... To be eligible for the award, a student-athlete must be classified as an NCAA Division I senior and have notable achievements in four areas of excellence – community, classroom, character and competition ... Novacek is a 2009 First Team Atlantic 10 All-Conference selection ... The accounting major has earned Dayton’s Presidential Scholarship and has been listed on the Atlantic 10 Commissioner’s Honor Roll while helping UD to five A-10 regular season and tournament titles, three-straight NCAA Tournament appearances, and two 30-win seasons.
CHARLOTTE MATCH WILL BE HELD AT UD ARENA
On Saturday Oct. 23 the Flyers will move to the University of Dayton Arena to play Charlotte at 4:30 ... The move is a precursor to the NCAA Volleyball Regional which will be held at UD Arena from Dec. 10-11 – the NCAA requires the host school to play at least one home match at the Regional site during the regular season ... The Xavier match on Oct. 29, originally scheduled to be played at UD Arena, has been moved back to the Frericks Center.
IN MEMORIAM: KACIE HAUSFELD
A number 14 patch is adorned on the Flyers’ jerseys this season in memoriam of a fallen teammate Kacie Hausfeld who tragically passed away last spring in a plane crash with her father, Tom ... Hausfeld, known her leadership and influential personality, would have been a senior ... For three seasons she excelled in the program as a setter, starting in the last two with 7.00 assists per set and 51 aces ... Kacie is survived by her mother Lori and sister Ali.
ACADEMIC/ APR SUCCESS
Dayton volleyball was recognized for the third straight season with the American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) Team Academic Award ... Finishing the season No. 25 in the AVCA poll, UD is one of just three nationally-ranked teams to earn the award this season (Oregon, Stanford) ... The Flyers reported a 3.37 team GPA in the 2009-10 school year ... UD volleyball also scored a perfect single-year APR score (1000) in 2008-09, which was released in the Spring by the NCAA.
RETURNING CHAMPS -- PREDICTED CHAMPS
With five starters returning from last season’s Atlantic 10 Championship team UD has been picked to win the A-10 title again in 2010 ... The Flyers were the regular season co-champs with Saint Louis, and the tournament champs after edging SLU in five sets at the Frericks Center ... The Flyers return two all-conference selections Lindsay Fletemier and Becky Novacek, A-10 Tournament MVP Amanda Cowdrey, and All-Rookie Team selection Rachel Krabacher ... Additionally, the Flyers add highly-touted recruit and Nebraska transfer Jessica Yanz to the setter position.
DAYTON SELECTED AS NCAA REGIONAL SITE IN 2010
Dayton will be one of four hosts during the 2010 NCAA Tournament Regionals on Dec. 10-11 at the University of Dayton Arena ... Tickets are now available for purchase by visiting the UD Arena Ticket Office or by phone at 937-229-4433
... Other Regional sites include Austin (Texas), Seattle (Washington), and University Park (Penn State) ... The National Semifinals and Final will be held at Kansas City’s Sprint Center.
Noting a tradition of success
-Six NCAA Tournament appearances in the last seven years
-Two 30-win seasons in the last three years
-Seven Atlantic 10 regular season titles
-Five Atlantic 10 tournament titles
-Finished 2009 ranked No. 25
-Ranked for the first time entering in the season at No. 21