Hawkeyes Head to Green Bay

Sept. 1, 2009

The Iowa Hawkeyes will travel to Green Bay, WI this week to compete at the Green Bay Country Inn and Suites Classic. The Hawkeyes will face South Dakota State at 4:30 p.m. Friday, Central Michigan at 11 a.m. Saturday and tournament host Wisconsin-Green Bay at 7 p.m. Saturday night.

HEAD COACH Sharon Dingman
“This weekend will give us another opportunity to show progress. Our hitters need to work on our shot selection so we can become more efficient on offense. I’m excited about our defensive effort. We need to continue playing strong defense as we develop other areas.”

Fans can follow Hawkeye volleyball on hawkeyesports.com, where live stats will be available for all three weekend matches. Visit the Iowa volleyball schedule page for links to live stats. Live video will also be available this weekend via GreenBayPhoenix.com.

The Hawkeyes opened the 2009 campaign with a tournament championship at the Loyola Invitational. Iowa defeat host Loyola-Chicago (3-0), Marquette (3-1) and Eastern Kentucky (3-0) to start the season with three straight wins for the first time since 2002. The Hawkeyes will aim for their first 4-0 start since 1998 when they face South Dakota State in the opening round of this weekend’s Country Inn and Suites Classic.

Junior outside hitter Aimee Huffman was named MVP of the Loyola Invitational. The Poth, TX native totaled 29 kills, 19 digs, 10 blocks and seven assists in the three-game tournament sweep. Junior Becky Walters earned all-tournament honors after a dominating weekend at the net and service line. Walters matched a career-high with seven blocks vs. Eastern Kentucky and served a career-best four aces vs. Marquette.

“This weekend will give us another opportunity to show progress. Our hitters need to work on our shot selection so we can become more efficient on offense. I’m excited about our defensive effort. We need to continue playing strong defense as we develop other areas.”
Head Coach Sharon Dingman

Bump, Set, BLOCK!
The Iowa defense dominated the net at the Loyola Invitational. The Hawkeyes outblocked their opponents 35-16 in the opening weekend. Three Hawkeyes recorded double-digit block totals in the tournament, with MB Becky Walters leading the way with 15. Senior OH Megan Schipper and junior OH Aimee Huffman recorded 10 blocks each and junior MB Katie Kennedy came off the bench to contribute eight blocks.

Senior outside hitter Megan Schipper and junior setter Mara Hilgenberg have been voted team captains for the 2009 season. In 2008, Shipper ranked among the team leaders in kills, service aces, digs and total blocks. Hilgenberg is the Hawkeyes’ top returner in assists and is a third generation Hawkeye captain. Her great-uncle Wally and her uncle Jim were football team captains in 1963 and 1977, respectively.

Mara Hilgenberg’s father Jay and Emma Krieger-Kittle’s father Bruce played football together at Iowa from 1977-1980. Jay was a four-time letterwinner and went on to win Super Bowl XX with the 1985 Chicago Bears. Bruce used a redshirt in 1980 and came back as a team captain for Hayden Fry’s 1981 Big Ten Championship team.

The Hawkeyes have four freshmen on the roster. Newcomers include Emma Krieger-Kittle (Iowa City, IA), Lauren Friedman (Waterloo, IA), Allison Straumann (Cary, IL) and Jordanne LeTourneau (McHenry, IL).

Freshman Emma Krieger Kittle and the Hawkeyes attack Green Bay this week.

Junior outside hitter Megan Eskew sustained a torn ACL during summer workouts and will miss the 2009 campaign. Eskew earned academic all-Big Ten honors in 2008 and was named MVP of the 2007 Hawkeye-Holiday Inn Challenge as a freshman.

Iowa opened the season with a three-game road trip and will continue to pound the pavement with a three-game road tilt this weekend. To kick off 2009, the Hawkeyes play 11 of their first 14 matches away from home. Eleven of Iowa’s 32 contests are against 2008 NCAA Tournament qualifiers. They include Iowa State, Minnesota (2), Penn State (2), Michigan (2), Purdue (2) and Illinois (2).

The Big Ten is widely recognized as one of the nation’s premier conferences. Penn State returns as the conference champion, winner of the last two NCAA Championships and ranked atop the 2009 AVCA Coaches Poll. Other Big Ten schools ranked in the top 25 include Michigan (7), Illinois (8), Minnesota (13), Michigan State (20) and Purdue (24).
? The Big Ten led the nation in attendance in 2008 and has been the national leader on six occasions in the last 12 years, including three of the past five seasons.
? The Big Ten has sent three or more teams to NCAA regionals on 14 occasions, including each of the past seven years.
? Big Ten volleyball players have been named all-America by the AVCA over 100 times since 1984.
? The Big Ten accumulated 10 or more wins in each of the last six NCAA Championships.
? Big Ten teams have combined to reach the NCAA semifinals on 15 occasions.
? The Big Ten owns a .616 overall record in NCAA competition and has posted a record of .500 or better in each of the past 18 NCAA tournaments.

BIG IN `08
Iowa volleyball made significant strides and put together the most successful campaign in recent memory in 2008, including: ? six conference wins, most since 2000 (11)
? 14 overall wins, most since 2000 (15)
? seven-match win streak (fourth-longest streak in school history)
? won 15-consecutive sets, longest since 1990 (22)
? winning record at North Carver (7-6), first time since `98
? set school-record for average attendance (1,146)
? recorded five of the ten largest crowds in program history
? Dingman recorded career win No. 350 vs. N’western (11/14)
? snapped 18-match conference road losing streak
? snapped 39-match losing streak to Ohio State (3-1)
? snapped 26-match losing streak to Wisconsin (3-0)

The 2009 Hawkeyes will make two appearances on the Big Ten Network this season. Iowa will open the Big Ten season at Wisconsin Wednesday, September 23. The contest will be aired live at 7 p.m. CT. The rematch between the Hawkeyes and Badgers, Wednesday, November 11, will be broadcast live from Carver-Hawkeye Arena at 7 p.m. CT. Both matches will be broadcast in high-definition.