Hawkeyes Return Home

Oct. 16, 2006

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This Week ? The University of Iowa volleyball team (12-8, 1-7) will return to North Carver this weekend for a pair of Big Ten Conference matches.

Iowa will battle the 17th-ranked Minnesota Golden Gophers Friday night at 7 p.m., then take on the 11th-ranked Wisconsin Badgers Saturday night at 7 p.m.

Hawkeyes on the Web ? If you can’t make it to North Carver this weekend, you can still follow all of the action on hawkeyesports.com, where a live audio broadcast and livestats will be available.

Play-by-play from the voice of Iowa volleyball Brian Wilson and former Hawkeye Barb (Willis) Randall can be found by clicking on the Hawkeye All-Access link at hawkeyesports.com, then selecting the game you would like to listen to. To check out the livestats, just click on the “gametracker” link on the schedule page.

Web Conference ? Iowa Head Coach Cindy Fredrick will be hosting a weekly “Web Conference” every Tuesday this season.She will address a variety of topics, from the state of the team to that week’s opponents.

Hawkeye fans can get in on the act and ask Coach Fredrick questions of their own by emailing them to AskCoachFredrick@yahoo.com. The coach will answer as many fan questions as possible.

Last Week ? The Hawkeyes dropped a pair of Big Ten Conference matches over the weekend, getting swept by Michigan (30-27, 30-21, 30-19) and Michigan State (30-21, 30-20, 30-25).

In Friday’s match with the Wolverines, Iowa came out of the gates hot in game one and built an early lead. The Hawkeyes held the advantage until a kill gave the Wolverines their first lead at 22-21. Iowa tied things up with a Megan Schipper kill, but Michigan responded with a point. Schipper came back with another kill to tie things at 23-23, but the Wolverines got three-consecutive kills to take a lead they would never relinquish. Iowa cut the lead to one at 26-25 with a kill from Catherine Smale, but it was as close as they would come.

Michigan took the momentum into game two and got six-straight kills to take a 6-1 lead and force Iowa into an early timeout. The Hawkeyes came out of the timeout with a kill from Allison Smith and two-straight from Jen Barcus to cut the lead to 6-4. The Wolverines took off from there, and slowly stretched their lead to as much as ten. Iowa attempted a comeback and cut the lead to 21-17, but Michigan held the Black and Gold at bay and ended up with a 30-21 lead.

The Wolverines controlled game three from the outset, never allowing the Hawkeyes into the game. A Michigan block ended the match with a 30-19 game three win.

On Saturday night, the Spartans led from wire-to-wire in the opening game, taking the first three points and never looking back. Michigan State hit a blistering .417 in the game. The highlight for Iowa was the play of Schipper, who had five kills and a .500 attack percentage in the game.

In game two, Michigan State once again jumped out to an early lead and held on throughout the game. Iowa managed to close within one at 9-8 on a Spartan attack error, but it was as close as the Hawkeyes would come. Iowa did manage to fight off a trio of game points before succumbing 30-20.

The Hawkeyes started off in a hole early in game three, as the team was penalized two points for delay of game when the team was late getting out of their lockerroom after intermission. The Spartans looked to run away with game three early, but the Hawkeyes clawed their way back into the game. A block from Barcus and Kiley Fister cut the lead to 18-17 and forced a Michigan State timeout.

Iowa brought the game to within one again at 21-20, but the Spartans responded with four-straight points. The Hawkeyes would come back again to cut the lead to 25-24, but once again Michigan State responded by fending Iowa off. A Spartan kill ended the match with a 30-25 game three win.

Scouting Minnesota ? The Minnesota Golden Gophers are 13-5 overall and in second place in the Big Ten with a 7-1 record. They are ranked No. 17 by the AVCA.

The Golden Gopher offense is led by outside hitter Kyla Roehrig, who averages a team-best 3.52 kills per game.

Minnesota is very strong in the middle, where veteran middle blockers Meredith Nelson and Jessy Jones roam. Nelson puts down 3.32 kills per game and hits at a .299 clip, while Jones averages 2.78 kills per game and a team-best 1.50 blocks per game. That total is good for fourth in the Big Ten.

The Golden Gophers have moved from a 6-2 to a 5-1 lineup, and use sophomore Rachel Hartmann (13.15 assists per game) as their primary setter. Former first team all-American setter Kelly Bowman has moved to rightside hitter, where she is averaging 2.16 kills and 3.30 digs per game.

On defense, libero Malma Peniata leads the Big Ten with 5.64 digs per game.

Minnesota is coached by Mike Herbert, who is in his 11th season. The Golden Gophers lead the all-time series 47-12, and have won the last 21 matches.

Scouting Wisconsin ? The Wisconsin Badgers are 14-4 on the year and have a 6-2 mark in the conference, good for third place. They are ranked No. 11 by the AVCA.

As a team, Wisconsin is ranked fourth in hitting percentage (.266) and third in opponent’s hitting percentage (.154).

Individually, Brittany Dolgner leads the offense with 3.87 kills per game. Maria Carlini is second on the squad with 3.42. Five other players are averaging more than two kills per game, making their attack very diverse.

On defense, the Badgers have two players in the top five of the Big Ten in blocks. Taylor Reinke leads the conference with 1.74 per game, while Amy Bladow is fifth at 1.33.

Wisconsin is coached by Pete Waite, who is in his eighth year at the helm. The Badgers lead the all-time series 35-17-1, and have won the last 20 meetings.

Smale in the Big Ten ? Sophomore outside hitter Catherine Smale has raised her game during conference play. The St. Charles, IL, native leads the Hawkeye attack with 3.57 kills per game, after averaging 3.28 in non-conference action.

Smale is also a key part of the Hawkeye defense, and is averaging 3.04 digs per game overall, 2.57 in conference play.

Schipper Shines ? Freshman outside hitter Megan Schipper is continuing her strong play as she grows accustomed to her increased role. Schipper led the team in kills against Michigan, and is averaging 2.50 kills per game in conference play.

Since joining the starting lineup against Illinois, Schipper is averaging 2.94 kills per game.

Digstown ? As a team, the Hawkeyes are second in the Big Ten with 16.71 digs per game. Michigan leads the way with 18.30 digs per game.

Win Number 400 ? Iowa Head Coach Cindy Fredrick won her 400th career collegiate game on October 6 with a 3-0 (30-20, 30-24, 30-23) win over Indiana.

Coach Fredrick is now 400-292 in her career, with a 36-49 record at the University of Iowa.

Dig `em Up ? Sophomore libero Emily Hiza is fifth in the Big Ten with 4.59 digs per game.

Already No. 6 ? Sophomore setter Kiley Fister is already among the all-time leaders at Iowa in assists. She has 2,114, good for sixth on the Hawkeyes’ all-time list. Jitka Stehnova (2002-03) is in fifth with 2,159.

Janet Moylan (1987-90) is Iowa’s all-time leader with 5,471.

Take Me To Your Leader ? Senior middle blocker Melanie Meister and sophomore libero Emily Hiza are the Hawkeye captains this season.

The Assistant Coaches ? Dr. Mashallah (Farokh) Farokhmanesh and Chad Hanson will serve as assistants to Head Coach Cindy Fredrick again this season. Farokh, the associate head coach, is the husband of Coach Fredrick.

Welcome Aboard ? The Hawkeye coaching staff has a new addition this year with Katie McGuine joining the team as the Director of Volleyball Operations.

McGuine will work closely with the Hawkeye volleyball staff, helping coordinate and carry out the day-to-day activities in the program.

McGuine joins the Hawkeyes after serving as the Human Resources Manager at Cardinal of Minnesota, Ltd., in Rochester, MN. She also served as head volleyball coach at Pine Island High School during the 2003 and 2004 seasons. In 2005 and 2006, she was head coach of the 16s Southern Minnesota Volleyball Club in Rochester, MN.