Iowa Concludes Nonconference Action at Marquette Invite

Sept. 12, 2012

Marquette Invitational Notes

The University of Iowa volleyball team (7-3) concludes nonconference action this weekend when it travels to Milwaukee, Wis., for the Marquette Invitational. The Hawkeyes open play Friday against Pacific at 11 a.m. before facing Milwaukee at 4:30 p.m. Iowa concludes play against host Marquette Saturday at 1:30 p.m. All times are listed central and all matches will be played in the Al McGuire Center.

Friday, Sept. 14
11 a.m. – Iowa vs. Pacific
4:30 p.m. – Iowa vs. Milwaukee
7 p.m. – Pacific at Marquette
Saturday, Sept. 15
11 a.m. – Pacific vs. Milwaukee
1:30 p.m. – Iowa at Marquette
7 p.m. – Milwaukee at Marquette

Live blogging and stats will be available for every Hawkeye match at the Marquette Invitational. A member of the Iowa volleyball staff will offer scoring updates and interactive content from the Official Iowa Volleyball Blog. Hawkeye manager Libbie Hillmer will host the live blog. Visit the Iowa volleyball page at for links to live stats, Gametracker and the live blog.

The Hawkeyes finished 2-1 at the Iowa State Challenge last weekend in Ames, Iowa. The Hawkeyes opened the tournament Friday with a 3-2 win over Syracuse. Trailing 2-0 Friday night at Iowa State, the Hawkeyes rallied to push the match to five sets. The visitors led the fifth set (4-2) before ultimately falling, 3-2, to the 18th-ranked Cyclones. Iowa defeated Eastern Washington in straight-sets Saturday to conclude action. Iowa, Syracuse and host Iowa State all finished with 2-1 records after the Orange defeated the Cyclones in the final match of the Iowa State Challenge on Saturday night, 3-2.

Five Hawkeyes have garnered all-tournament honors this season. Juniors Bethany Yeager and Chante’ Thompson were both named to the Hawkeye Challenge All-Tournament Team. Juniors Rachael Bedell and Nikki Dailey, and sophomore Alex Lovell, were named to the Golden Grizzly Invitational All-Tournament Team. Last weekend, Dailey and Lovell were named to the Iowa State Challenge All-Tournament Team. Dailey turned in three double-doubles and Lovell led the Hawkeyes with 43 kills during the three-match tournament.

vs. PACIFIC (Sept. 14)
Head Coach: Greg Gibbons (45-24, 3rd season)
2012 Record/Neutral/Conference: 8-1 overall; 4-0; 0-0 (Big West)
Series Record/Last Meeting: First meeting
Take Note: Only loss came to No. 7 Stanford

at MILWAUKEE (Sept. 14)
Head Coach: Susie Johnson (115-46, 6th season)
2012 Record/Neutral/Conference: 5-5 overall; 3-1; 0-0 (Horizon League)
Series Record/Last Meeting: Iowa leads, 4-0/2005, Iowa, 3-2
Take Note: UWM finished 25-5 in 2011, advanced to NCAA Tournament

vs. MARQUETTE (Sept. 15)
Head Coach: Bond Shymansky (72-34, 4th season)
2012 Record/Home/Conference: 7-2 overall; 4-2; 0-0 (BIG EAST)
Series Record/Last Meeting: Tied, 2-2/2011, Marquette, 3-1
Take Note: Shymansky is an Iowa City native and Iowa alum

Bethany Yeager became the 14th Hawkeye in program history to surpass 1,000 career digs in Iowa’s season-opening sweep of Chicago State. The junior registered a match-high 21 digs in the win. She ranks first in the Big Ten with 201 digs and ranks second in digs per set (5.00). The Brenham, Texas, native ranks 46th nationally in digs per set. Yeager ranks eighth at Iowa in career digs (1,199). Fellow junior Nikki Dailey ranks seventh in career assists (1,867) and stands at eighth in league assists (9.74/set). As a team, the Hawkeyes rank 81st nationally in kills per set.

Three Hawkeyes have registered a double-double in 2012. Junior Nikki Dailey leads the way with six double-doubles. Sophomore Alex Lovell has turned in five and junior Rachael Bedell has notched four. Dailey recorded double-doubles during all three Iowa State Challenge matches, and has tallied four-straight overall. Lovell registered 17 kills and 10 digs in Iowa’s sweep of Eastern Washington last Saturday.

After playing its first four matches at home on Mediacom Court in Carver-Hawkeye Arena at the Hawkeye Challenge (Aug. 24-25), Iowa is in the middle of a stretch of 11-straight matches away from Iowa City. The Hawkeyes went 2-1 last weekend in the Iowa State Challenge after finishing 2-1 in the Oakland Tournament (Aug. 31-Sept. 1). Iowa continues action on the road and concludes nonconference action this weekend in Milwaukee, Wis., at the Marquette Tournament. The Hawkeyes open conference action Sept. 21 at Ohio State and Sept. 22 at Penn State before returning to Iowa City on Sept. 28 to face Michigan in their Big Ten home opener. Iowa is 4-0 in neutral site matches and 0-2 in true road matches.

The Big Ten is represented by seven teams in the AVCA top 25 poll, including two of the top four nationally-ranked squads. The seven teams marks the most of any conference. Defending league champion Nebraska is No. 1 overall, followed by Penn State at No. 4. Minnesota ranks 10th and Purdue sits at No. 14. Other top 25 residents include Ohio State (No. 21), Michigan (No. 22) and Illinois (No. 23), the 2011 national runner-up. Michigan State and Northwestern are receiving votes.

Two Hawkeyes, junior Nikki Dailey and sophomore Emily Yanny, hail from the state of Wisconsin. Dailey is from Franklin and Yanny is a native of New Berlin. Both locations are approximately 15 miles from this weekend’s matches in Milwaukee.

The Hawkeyes have six newcomers on this year’s roster. They include sophomore transfers Alessandra Dietz (Loyola-Marymount, 6-1, MB) and Katie Kelley (Maryland, 5-5, DS), and true freshmen Julianne Blomberg (5-11, DS/OH), Kathleen Dailey (5-11, DS/OH), Erin Radke (6-1, RS) and Anne Yanda (5-11, S). Five newcomers — Dietz, Kelley, Yanda, Radke, Blomberg — have seen action in 2012.

Juniors Bethany Yeager and Nikki Dailey have started every match since the start of the 2011 season. Dailey has not missed a set since last season, while Yeager, an Academic All-Big Ten honoree, has only missed one set in her first three seasons at Iowa (270-of-271).

In 2011, sophomore Alex Lovell led the team in kills and became Iowa’s first freshman since 2005 to surpass 300 kills in a single season, recording 312. Junior Nikki Dailey led the team a year ago in assists (1,152) and service aces (33). Junior Bethany Yeager led Iowa in digs (527) for the second time in as many years. All three are leading the same respective categories this season. Lovell is pacing the Hawkeyes with 138 kills. Dailey has registered 409 assists and Yeager leads Iowa with 210 digs.

The Hawkeyes have defeated a ranked team in three of Dingman’s four seasons. Iowa will have plenty of opportunities to continue that trend, as seven of its remaining 2012 opponents appear in this week’s AVCA top 25 poll. Iowa’s top 25 victories since 2008 include: vs. No. 18 Wisconsin (3-0, 2008); vs. No. 18 Michigan State (3-0, 2009); vs. No. 16 Michigan (3-1, 2010). The Hawkeyes are 0-1 against ranked foes this season, falling at No. 18 Iowa State on Sept. 7, 3-2.

Senior Allison Straumann and juniors Bethany Yeager and Nikki Dailey have been voted team captains for the 2012 season. Straumann, Iowa’s lone senior, has appeared in 48 career matches. Yeager and Dailey have started every match since the beginning of last season.

The Hawkeyes hosted the Hawkeye Challenge and make three weekend road trips before beginning their 20-match Big Ten schedule. The entire 33-match schedule includes 18 contests against teams that appeared in the 2011 NCAA Tournament. Iowa will play a home-away series with every Big Ten team except Illinois and Northwestern for the second-straight season. The Hawkeyes face the Illini once (at Carver-Hawkeye Arena, Nov. 24) and the Wildcats once (at Northwestern, Oct. 21).

Season tickets remain on sale through the UI Ticket Office. Season tickets are 2-for-$30 and include a complementary Hawkeye t-shirt. Contact the UI Ticket Office at 1-800-IA-HAWKS or visit to place your season ticket order.

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