Hawkeyes Take Winning Streak On The Road

Sept. 30, 2008

IOWA CITY – This Week ? The University of Iowa volleyball team takes its first Big Ten road trip this weekend. The Hawkeyes will face No. 18 Purdue Friday at 6 p.m. in West Lafayette, IN, and No. 19 Illinois Saturday at 7 p.m. in Champaign, IL. All times listed are central.

Hawkeyes on the Web ? Fans can follow Hawkeye volleyball on hawkeyesports.com, where Gametracker, live audio and video will be available throughout the season.

Live audio coverage will be available for the remainder of the season. Live streaming video can be found on hawkeyesports.com for all 13 home matches. Gametracker will be available for all 13 home matches and for select road matches. Check hawkeyesports.com for live stats availability.

Audio, video and Gametracker links can be found on the volleyball schedule page of hawkeyesports.com.

Scouting Purdue ? The 18th-ranked Purdue Boilermakers are 12-2 overall and 1-1 in Big Ten play. Purdue’s only losses came to Utah State and top-ranked Penn State.

Stephanie Lynch leads the team with 186 kills, a .421 attack percentage and 68 total blocks. Danita Merlau is second on the team with 168 kills. Jaclyn Hart is the team’s primary setter with 503 assists, while Kelli Miller has 231 digs.

Iowa trails in the all-time series, 18-40. Purdue swept both meetings last season.

Scouting Illinois ? The 19th-ranked Illinois Fighting Illini are 10-3 overall and 1-1 in conference action. Iowa and Illinois share one common non-conference opponent in Tennessee. Iowa swept the Lady Volunteers while Illinois won in five sets.

Laura DeBruler leads the team with 211 kills, while Johannah Bangert has a team-best 73 total blocks. Hillary Haen has a team-high 285 assists and Ashley Edinger leads the squad with 221 digs.

Iowa trails in the all-time series, 13-43. Illinois swept both matches last season.

On a Roll ? Iowa has won seven-straight matches, dating back to Sept. 13 when the Hawkeyes knocked off Virginia in five sets. The seven-match winning streak is tied for the fourth longest in school histroy since 1986.

It’s Been a While ? Iowa opened Big Ten play with a win for only the third time this decade. The only other seasons the Hawkeyes started 1-0 in Big Ten action was 2000 (vs. Illinois) and 2005 (vs. Northwestern).

In addition, the 2008 Hawkeyes are only the fifth team in school history to start conference play a perfect 2-0. The 1983, 1986, 1994 and 2000 teams were the only other squads to go a perfect two-for-two in the opening matches.

Sweeping Opponents ? Iowa’s sweep against 18th-ranked Wisconsin capped an impressive 15-set winning streak, which was the longest in school history since 1990. The Hawkeyes took 18-straight sets during the 1990 season.

Snapping Streaks ? Not only did Iowa start the Big Ten slate 2-0, it snapped losing streaks against conference opponents.

Iowa defeated Wisconsin for the first time since 1994. The Badgers had collected 26-straight wins over Iowa before Friday night.

Iowa’s win over Northwestern Saturday also broke a five-match losing skid against the Wildcats.

Staying Perfect at Home ? Iowa is starting to build a home court advantage at Carver-Hawkeye Arena.

The Hawkeyes are currently a perfect 5-0 in Iowa City. That is the best home record since 2000, when Iowa also started 5-0 at home. The 1998 Hawkeyes have the best start in recent history with a 6-0 start.

Huffman Shines Against Wildcats ? Sophomore Aimee Huffman turned in a career-high 20 digs on 36 swings with an impressive .444 attack percentage and also had seven digs and two block assists in Iowa’s win over Northwestern.

The Poth, TX, native is currently fourth on the team with 85 digs.

Double the Fun ? Both senior Catherine Smale and junior Megan Schipper have contributed both offensively and defensively so far this season.

Smale has tallied five double-doubles and is averaging 3.53 kills per set and 2.27 digs. Schipper has four double-doubles, averaging 3.24 kills and 1.96 digs.

Dingman Closing in on Milestone ? Head Coach Sharon Dingman enters the weekend just four wins away from career win No. 350.

Dingman tallied 22 wins in one year at Auburn, 167 wins in eight years at Butler, 147 wins in eight years at Illinois State and 10 wins so far in her first season at Iowa.

Heading Back Home ? Head Coach Sharon Dingman will be facing a school she is very familiar with this weekend.

Dingman was a part of back-to-back Big Ten championships at Purdue from 1979-80, before transferring to Northern Michigan.

Hawkeyes in National Stats ? Iowa currently ranks 25th in the country in attack percentage (.265) and 71st in win-loss percentage (.714).

Tough Schedule in `08 ? Six Iowa opponents are ranked in the latest AVCA Division I Coaches Top 25 poll. One additional teams is also listed as receiving votes. Iowa will also square off against 10 teams that qualified for the NCAA Tournament in 2007.

Opponents ranked include Penn State (No. 1), Minnesota (No. 13), Purdue (No. 18), Illinois (No. 19), Wisconsin (No. 20), and Michigan (No. 22). Michigan State is receiving votes.

The 10 teams who played in the NCAA Tournament last year are Western Kentucky, Alabama, Iowa State, Xavier, Minnesota, Purdue, Wisconsin, Michigan, Michigan State and Penn State, who also won the 2007 Big Ten and NCAA championship.

Climbing the Records Ladder ? Below is a list of where current Hawkeyes rank in different career school records. The number in parenthsees is the next place.

Kiley Fister
Assists: 3,863, 4th, (3rd, 4,128)
Service Aces: 90, 12th, (11th, 99)

Catherine Smale
Kills: 1,108, 12th, (11th, 1,120)
Digs: 908, 16th, (15th, 914)

Becky Walters
Attack Percentage: .262, 2nd, (1st, .276)

Emily Hiza
Digs: 1,672, 2nd, (1st, 1,931)

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