Hawkeye Volleyball Travels to Nebraska, Penn State

Oct. 22, 2013


Iowa volleyball takes on No. 13 Nebraska on Oct. 23, 2013. The 6:30 p.m. CT match held in Lincoln, Neb. will be aired live on the Big Ten Network. The Hawkeyes continue their road trip with a match against No. 2 Penn State in University Park, Pa. First serve is scheduled for 6 p.m. CT and the match will be covered by the Big Ten Digital Network. Fans can watch the match online at BTN.com or through the BTN2Go application. Gametracker and audio play-by-play with Jeremy Meyer will be available at hawkeyesports.com for each match.

Junior outside hitter Alex Lovell is just eight kills from reaching the 1,000 career kills threshold. She would be the 17th player in Iowa volleyball history to earn this career milestone. Senior setter Nikki Dailey is approaching her 1,000 career digs mark. With 977 career digs, she is just 23 away from reaching the milestone. If accomplished, Dailey will be the 15th player in Iowa volleyball history to reach the 1,000 career digs mark.

Senior libero Bethany Yeager remains third in Iowa history with 1,860 career digs. She is just 71 digs from tying the school record and 72 digs from taking sole possession of the record currently held by Janet Moylan, who recorded 1931 career digs. Senior setter Nikki Dailey remains sixth all-time with a total of 2,960 career assists, ranks 14th in career service aces with 90, and is 15th in career digs with 977. Junior outside hitter Alex Lovell and senior right side hitter Rachael Bedell rank 17th with 992 career kills and 20th with 794 career kills, respectively.

According to the most recent release of the national statistics on Oct. 21, 2013, the Hawkeyes hold a 75th place ranking in aces per set (1.40) and the 81st spot in digs per set (15.60). Alex Lovell is 68th in kills per set (3.73).

Iowa volleyball paces the Big Ten Conference in digs with a total of 1,248 for a 15.60 digs per set average. The Hawkeyes are also third in service aces with 112 on the season for a 1.40 service ace per set average. Alex Lovell ranks seventh in kills with 298 (3.72 per set) and points with 322 (4.03). Bethany Yeager is second in digs with 338 (4.22 per set), and Nikki Dailey is ninth in service aces with 20 (0.28 per set).

Nebraska brings a No. 13 national ranking, an overall record of 13-4, and a Big Ten Conference mark of 6-2 into the Wednesday, Oct. 23 match with Iowa. Thirteenth-year head coach John Cook leads the team and he is assisted by Dani Busboom Kelly and Dan Meske. The roster is comprised of eight freshmen, five sophomores, one junior, and three seniors. Kelsey Robinson paces the Cornhuskers in kills with 283 (4.49 per set) and digs with 228 (3.62 per set). Mary Pollmiller leads the team with 647 assists (10.27 per set), and Cecilia Hall has a team-most 70 blocks (1.19 per set) on the season. As a team, Nebraska owns a .265 hitting percentage and averages 14.5 kills per set.

Penn State is ranked first in the Big Ten Conference and second in the nation with a 7-1 record in conference action and a 16-2 record overall. Head coach Russ Rose is in his 35th season at the helm of the program and he is assisted by Steve Aird and Kaleena Davis. Five freshmen, four sophomores, five juniors, and five seniors make up the Penn State roster. Ariel Scott leads the Nittany Lions in kills with 169 (3.19 per set) on the season, while Micha Hancock has dished out a team-most 701 assists (10.78 per set). Katie Slay paces the team with 102 blocks (1.57 per set), and Dominique Gonzales has a team-most 206 digs (3.17 per set). As a team, Penn State averages 13.80 kills per set and has a .314 hitting percentage.

Nebraska and Penn State each lead Iowa in all-time meetings 18-0 and 45-0, respectively. These teams are the only Big Ten Conference members that the Hawkeye volleyball team has yet to defeat in school history.

The Big Ten Conference continues to have a strong presence in the AVCA Division I Coaches Top 25 Poll’s most recent release on Oct. 21, 2013. Eight of the 12 total teams in the conference appear in the top 25, while Illinois and Northwestern each earned votes. Penn State leads the league with a second place national ranking, while No. 7 Minnesota and No. 10 Michigan State round out the top 10. No. 13 Nebraska, No. 16 Wisconsin, and No. 17 Michigan appear within the top 20. Rounding out the poll include No. 21 Purdue and No. 24 Ohio State.

A trio of Hawkeyes have tallied at least seven double-doubles in the first 20 matches of the 2013 season. Alex Lovell paces the team with a total of 10 double-doubles, which she has earned by recording double digit numbers in kills and digs. Alyssa Klostermann has nine double-doubles on the season, all of which were earned in the assists and digs categories. Posting seven double-doubles in the assists and digs category is Nikki Dailey.

After dropping its first seven Big Ten Conference matches, six to ranked opponents, Iowa volleyball edged out Indiana, 3-2, on Mediacom Court in Carver-Hawkeye Arena on Saturday, Oct. 19 to earn its first win of the 2013 conference season. The Hawkeyes gained confidence with the win, and are ready to use it as a turning point in the Big Ten season.

The Hawkeyes have defeated a ranked opponent in four of Dingman’s five previous seasons. Iowa will have plenty of opportunities to continue that trend, as eight of its Big Ten opponents appear in the AVCA Division I Coaches 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); at No. 12 Purdue (3-0, 2012).

Following this weekend’s matches at Nebraska and Penn State, Iowa volleyball returns to Mediacom Court in Carver-Hawkeye Arena for a pair of contests against Northwestern on Nov. 1 and Illinois on Nov. 2. A road trip to Minnesota and Wisconsin follows the home stand. The Hawkeyes take on the Golden Gophers on Nov. 8 and the Badgers on Nov. 10.

Season tickets are two-for-$30 and include a complimentary Hawkeye t-shirt. All season ticket holders receive snacks and drinks in the Hadley Club rom following the second set of each home match. Contact the UI Ticket Office at 1-800-IA-HAWKS or visit hawkeyesports.com to place your season ticket order.

To keep up with Iowa volleyball, like University of Iowa Volleyball on Facebook and follow @IowaVolleyball on Twitter. Follow @IowaVB_Live, for more frequent in-match tweets, play-by-play, statistics, and more. Don’t forget to use #IowaVB.