Hawkeyes Set for 2 Matches in Illinois

Oct. 14, 2015

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THIS WEEK
The University of Iowa volleyball team travels to Illinois for a pair of Big Ten contests this weekend. The Hawkeyes face No. 16 Illinois in Champaign, Illinois, on Friday, Oct. 16, before traveling to Evanston, Illinois, for a contest against Northwestern on Sunday, Oct. 18.

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LISTEN/FOLLOW ALONG
Both contests will air live on KXIC Radio. Live audio is also available on Hawkeye All-Access at hawkeyesports.com. Second-year play-by-play announcer Tim Keating will call the action. Live stats are available for each contest. Links can be found on the volleyball schedule page at hawkeyesports.com.

WATCH
Both contests will be streamed live online via BTN Plus. To see if your cable package gives you access to BTN Plus content, sign up for BTN Plus or learn more about it, visit btn2go.com.

FOLLOW THE HAWKEYES
For an inside look at the Iowa Volleyball program and access to exclusive coverage, “like” University of Iowa Volleyball on Facebook and follow @IowaVolleyball on Twitter and Instagram. Be sure to follow the team’s live Twitter feed, @IowaVB_Live, for more frequent in-match tweets, statistics and more.

ALUMNI MATCH
The 2015 Iowa volleyball alumni match is set for Saturday, Nov. 21, when the Hawkeyes host Northwestern at 7 p.m. (CT). For more information and to RSVP to the event, contact Bre Payton at breann-payton@iowavolleyball.com.

NATIONAL RANKINGS
Twelve of Iowa’s 2015 opponents appear in the American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) Top 25 Poll, released on Oct. 12. No. 3 Nebraska, No. 5 Penn State, No. 7 Ohio State, No. 8 Hawaii, No. 11 Minnesota, No. 12 UCLA, No. 15 Wisconsin, No. 16 Illinois, T-No. 18 Purdue, and No. 23 Michigan are ranked within the top 25, while Michigan State and Northwestern are receiving votes.

ALL-TIME SERIES – ILLINOIS
• Illinois leads Iowa, 54-13, in the all-time series.
• Iowa last defeated Illinois on Oct. 14, 2005, in Champaign, Illinois. The Hawkeyes swept the Fighting Illini (30-27, 30-26, 35-33).
• In 2014, the Hawkeyes fell to the 15th-ranked Fighting Illini in five sets.

ALL-TIME SERIES – NORTHWESTERN
• Northwestern leads Iowa, 40-27-1, all-time.
• In 2014, the Hawkeyes split a pair of contests with the Wildcats. Iowa won the first meeting, 3-2, in Iowa City, Iowa, on Oct. 18, before Northwestern defeated the Hawkeyes in straight sets in Evanston, Illinois, on Nov. 22.

STRENGTH OF SCHEDULE
According to the NCAA, the Hawkeyes have the seventh-strongest strength of schedule in Division I Volleyball — the highest ranking among Big Ten opponents. Wisconsin (8th) and Northwestern (9th) also made the top 10. Iowa currently owns a team RPI of 40.

ATTENDANCE RECORDS
Iowa has set two top 10 attendance marks this season. The Hawkeyes downed the Cyclones in front of the fifth largest crowd in program history (2,488) on Sept. 11, before hosting the nationally ranked Huskers on Sept. 23 in front of 2,447 fans — the sixth largest crowd in program history.

A POWERHOUSE CONFERENCE
Ten Big Ten teams are included in the AVCA Division I Coaches Top 25 Poll, released on Oct 12. No. 3 Nebraska, No. 5 Penn State, and No. 7 Ohio State appear in the top 10, while No. 11 Minnesota, No. 15 Wisconsin, No. 16 Illinois, T-No. 18 Purdue, and No. 23 Michigan also made the list. Michigan State (27) and Northwestern (2) are receiving votes in the poll.

IN THE BIG TEN – TEAM RANKINGS
• Iowa ranks second in the Big Ten conference in team assists with 876.
• The Hawkeyes have tallied 919 kills this season, the third most in the Big Ten.
• Iowa has 965 total digs on the season, the third highest total in the conference.
• The Hawkeyes average 1.19 aces per set, the fifth-best average in the Big Ten.
• The Hawkeyes are sixth in the Big Ten in hitting percentage. In 19 matches this season, Iowa is hitting .250.

IN THE BIG TEN – INDIVIDUAL RANKINGS
• Junior Loxley Keala leads the conference in total assists (761).
• Sophomore Annika Olsen leads the Big Ten in total digs (319) and ranks second in digs per set average (4.76).
• Keala has the second-best assist per set average in the Big Ten (11.36).
• Junior Lauren Brobst is fifth in the Big Ten in total kills (237).

NATIONALLY SPEAKING
• Junior Loxley Keala‘s 11.36 assists per set average ranks 15th nationally.
• Keala is ranked 32nd nationally in total assists (730).
• The Hawkeyes rank 35th nationally in assists per set average (13.07).

FRESHMEN MAKE AN IMPACT
• Freshman Molly Kelly is currently ranked fourth among league freshmen in service aces per set average (0.24). Kelly has 16 service aces this season.
• Freshman Reagan Davey is fifth among conference freshmen in kills per set average (2.44).
• Freshmen Libby Koukol (2.08) and Davey (1.94) are ranked seventh and 11th, respectively, among Big Ten freshmen in digs per set average.

A CAREER NIGHT
• Freshman Reagan Davey posted career highs in kills (21), total attempts (45), digs (12), and blocks (3) against No. 24 Michigan on Oct. 7.
• Sophomore Jess Janota recorded a career-high six blocks in the contest.
• Junior Loxley Keala dished out a career-high 64 assists against the Wolverines — the highest single-match assist total in the Big Ten this season.

8 STRAIGHT
The Hawkeyes won eight straight matches from Sept. 6-19 — the longest streak for the program since 2006. Iowa defeated American, 3-1, at the Hawaiian Airlines Wahine Volleyball Classic on Sept. 6. The following weekend (Sept. 11-12), the Hawkeyes went 3-0 at the Comfort Suites Challenge with wins over Milwaukee (3-0), Iowa State (3-1), and No. 25 Texas A&M (3-1). Iowa continued its streak on Sept. 18-19, sweeping the Holiday Inn Hawkeye Challenge tournament field with wins over Gardner-Webb (3-0), Coastal Carolina (3-0, 3-0) and Drake (3-0).

1G SETTER OF THE WEEK
University of Iowa junior Loxley Keala was named Big Ten Conference Setter of the Week for her performance at the Comfort Suites Challenge on Sept. 11-12. It is the first conference honor of Keala’s career. The Kaneohe, Hawaii, native is the first Hawkeye to earn a Big Ten weekly award since Bethany Yeager was named defensive player of the week on Sept. 2, 2013. Keala is the first Hawkeye in program history to win a weekly setter award.

Keala posted 40-plus assists in all three matches that weekend, including a career-high 57 against No. 25 Texas A&M. She led the offense to back-to-back matches with a .300 or better attack percentage, including a season-high .379 against Iowa State and .303 versus Texas A&M. Keala tallied 154 assists and averaged 14 assists per set on the weekend.

HAWKEYES DOWN CYCLONES IN HISTORIC FASHION
In front of the fifth-largest crowd in program history (2,488), the University of Iowa volleyball team trumped the Cyclones, 3-1, for the first time since Sept. 13, 1997. The Hawkeyes used a .379 attack percentage and a season-high 66 kills to defeat Iowa State in four sets. Sophomore Jess Janota paced the Hawkeye offense with a career-high 20 kills, while freshman Libby Koukol led the team with a career-high 18 digs.

DOWN GOES NO. 25
Iowa’s 3-1 victory over No. 25 Texas A&M on Sept. 12 marked the first ranked win for the Hawkeyes since defeating No. 12 Purdue, 3-1, on Nov. 8, 2014. Junior Loxley Keala led the Hawkeye offense with a career-high 57 assists, while junior Lauren Brobst paced the team in kills (17). Freshman Reagan Davey and senior Mikaela Gunderson each contributed four blocks.

BIG TEN NETWORK COVERAGE
The University of Iowa volleyball team competes live on the Big Ten Network (BTN) or BTN Plus 16 times this season. The Hawkeyes’ match against Wisconsin on Oct. 23 in Iowa City will be televised live on BTN. First serve is set for 7 p.m. (CT).

Fifteen Iowa matches will be shown via live stream online through BTN Plus. To see if your cable package gives you access to BTN Plus content, sign up for BTN Plus or learn more about it, visit btn2go.com.

ON THE RADIO
Ten of Iowa’s 20 Big Ten Conference matches will air live on KXIC Radio this season. The first broadcast of the season is on Oct. 16 when the Hawkeyes face Illinois at 7 p.m. (CT). Second-year play-by-play announcer Tim Keating will call the action. Audio for all of Iowa’s home and away matches is available online as part of the premium content package on Hawkeye All-Access at hawkeyesports.com.

UP NEXT
The Hawkeyes return to Carver-Hawkeye Arena on Friday, Oct. 23, hosting the Badgers at 7 p.m. (CT). The game will be shown live on BTN.

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