The University of Iowa volleyball team hosts Rutgers on Friday and Saturday, Feb. 19-20, at Xtream Arena in Coralville, Iowa. Both matches are set for 4 p.m. (CT). Due to the pandemic, there will be no general admission. Family of student-athletes and coaches of both schools will be allowed in attendance
HOW TO FOLLOW ALONG
- Live stats for each contest are linked on the team’s schedule page.
- Both matches will be streamed on B1G Network+ (subscription required).
- Fans can listen to both matches via the Hawkeye Radio Network YouTube page. John Evans will be on the call.
- For live, in-game score updates, follow @IowaVolleyball on Twitter.
WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW
- Iowa is 8-1 all-time against Rutgers, winning its first eight games of the series. The Hawkeyes dropped their last meeting against Rutgers in three sets.
- Iowa’s first win of the season was Feb. 5 against Indiana at the opening of Xtream Arena.
- Junior outside hitter Courtney Buzzerio registered her third career triple-double against Indiana on Feb. 6, becoming the only Hawkeye in school history to record multiple triple-doubles in a career.
- Hitting over .300 in five straight games, junior middle blocker Hannah Clayton leads Iowa with a .371 hitting percentage (59 kills, 13 errors, 124 total attacks)
- Sophomore libero Joslyn Boyer ranks third in the Big Ten in total digs (111).
LAST TIME OUT
- Iowa dropped both matches to undefeated Ohio State on the road last Friday and Saturday, Feb. 12-13.
- Junior middle blocker Amiya Jones started and made her season debut on Feb. 12, registering four kills and one block. The following match, Jones recorded six kills.
- In the series finale, the Hawkeyes owned five set points in the first two sets, but couldn’t close the door. The Buckeyes won the first set 28-26 and the second set 29-27, before taking the third set 25-18. Iowa posted a season-best .282 hitting percentage and six different Hawkeyes recorded at least five kills in the loss.
- Sophomore outside hitter Edina Schmidt shined offensively last weekend, registering a team-high 17 kills in two matches.
- Sophomore libero Joslyn Boyer anchored Iowa’s defense, recording 19 digs in game one and 20 in game two.
- Iowa set a new season-high in attacking percentage (.282) against Ohio State on Feb. 13. In 110 total attacks, the Hawkeyes tallied 44 kills and committed only 13 attacking errors to tie a season low.
- The Hawkeyes set season highs in kills (59), assists (55), aces (11), and digs (58) in Iowa’s five-set loss to Indiana on Feb. 6.
- Iowa attacked at a season-best .433 clip in the third set of Iowa’s win over Indiana on Feb. 5.
BUZZERIO DOING IT ALL
- Junior Courtney Buzzerio leads Iowa with 65 kills, ranks second on the team in assists (117) and digs (55), and third in total blocks (23).
- Buzzerio’s 26 assists against Ohio State on Feb. 6 were a season high. She has recorded at least 20 assists in three of the last four matches.
- Junior Courtney Buzzerio registered her third career triple-double (13 kills, 21 assists, 11 digs) in Iowa’s five-set match against Indiana on Feb. 6.
- Buzzerio is the only individual in the Big Ten and one of seven nationally to record a triple-double this season.
- The Chino Hills, California, native is the only Hawkeye in program history to register multiple triple-doubles in a career. Buzzerio’s first career triple-double was against Nebraska (Nov. 16, 2019) last season, with her second coming two weeks later against Ohio State (Nov. 29, 2019).
- There have only been five triple-double in the last 20 years at Iowa. Kiley Fister (2005) and Fabiana De Abreu (2000) are the other two Hawkeyes to complete the feat.
- Sophomore libero Joslyn Boyer has anchored Iowa’s back row.
- The Downers Grove, Illinois, native leads Iowa with 111 digs, while registering at least 20 digs in two of the three last games.
- Boyer’s 111 digs ranks third-best in the Big Ten and her 3.83 digs per set ranks eighth-best in the conference.
MIDDLES ON DEFENSE
- Sophomore middle blocker Blythe Rients leads the team and ranks sixth in the Big Ten with with 31 total blocks, followed by junior middle blocker Hannah Clayton’s 28 total blocks, which ranks ninth-best in the conference. Rients 1.07 blocks per set is 10th-best in the Big Ten, while Clayton’s 0.97 blocks per set ranks 13th in the conference.
- As a team, the Hawkeyes’ 63.5 total blocks ranks sixth-best in the Big Ten.
- Iowa registered a season-high 17 total blocks in its 3-1 win over Indiana on Feb. 5.
MIDDLES ON OFFENSE
- Hitting over .300 in five straight games, Clayton leads Iowa in and ranks 10th in the Big Ten in hitting percentage (.371). Clayton posted a career-best .667 attack percentage (13 kills, one error, 18 total attacks) in Iowa’s win over Indiana on Feb. 5. Clayton’s 59 kills are the second most on Iowa.
- Rients is coming off a career-high .538 hitting percentage with eight kills and only one attacking error in 13 total chances against Ohio State on Feb. 13. Rients’ .274 attacking percentage ranks second on Iowa.
- Three freshmen — Bailey Ortega, Audrey Black and Leanne Lowry — have contributed for the Hawkeyes to start the season.
- Ortega, a Davenport North high school grad, has led Iowa in assists in seven of eight games and leads Iowa with 117 assists. Ortega set a personal-best with 29 assists against Indiana on Feb. 6. Ortega has started in seven of eight games this season
- In Black’s first career start on Jan. 30 against No. 13 Purdue, she recorded a personal-best and team-high 10 kills. Black’s 57 kills and 190 total attacks are third most on the team. The Aurora, Colorado, native has started in four of eight games this season.
- In Lowry’s first career start on Jan. 30 at No. 13 Purdue, she tallied a personal-best and team-high 13 digs. Lowry is one of five Hawkeyes to record at least 35 digs this season. Lowry, a Castle Rock, Colorado, native has started four games this season.
TUBBS FINISHES IT OFF
- Sophomore middle blocker Grace Tubbs made her season debut late in the fourth set of Iowa’s victory over Indiana on Feb. 5. The Clinton, Iowa, native recorded her first kill of the season to give Iowa a 24-17 lead in the clinching set and served on match point.
- Tubbs appeared in only four games last season, registering at least one kill in three of the four.
BEST CONFERENCE IN THE NATION
- Five Big Ten teams are ranked in the latest AVCA Coaches Poll: No. 1 Wisconsin, No. 4 Nebraska, No. 5 Minnesota, No. 8 Penn State, and No. 11 Purdue.
- Seven Big Ten Schools qualified for the 2019 NCAA Tournament. Wisconsin was the NCAA runner-up, falling to Stanford, 3-0. Minnesota lost to Stanford, 3-0, in the NCAA Semifinals.
- The Big Ten Conference has crowned an NCAA Champion in nine of the last 15 years and two Big Ten teams have advanced to the Final Four five straight seasons.
NEW HOME FOR IOWA VOLLEYBALL
- Xtream Arena powered by Mediacom — the new home for the University of Iowa Volleyball team — hosted the first ever Iowa volleyball matches on Feb. 5-6 against Indiana.
- The 5,100-seat arena is located in the Iowa River Landing in Coralville, Iowa.
- The arena connects to the 53,000 sq. ft, five-court GreenState Family Fieldhouse.
- Xtream Arena will also be the home arena for a newly announced ECHL hockey team in 2021-22.
SCHEDULE AT A GLANCE
- Iowa’s 2021 volleyball schedule features a conference-only, 22-game slate. Iowa will face 11 of the Big Ten’s 14 teams. Four of Iowa’s opponents are ranked in the AVCA Coaches Poll.
- Home and away games will alternate weekends. Games will be played on Friday and Saturday, with one game (vs. Nebraska, March 17) on Wednesday.
- Iowa’s March 17 match against Nebraska at 6 p.m. (CT) will be televised on Big Ten Network and the regular season finale at Minnesota will be televised on ESPNU at 3 p.m.
- The NCAA Tournament will be begin April 8.
- All dates and times are subject to change.
- The Hawkeyes return 10 of 15 letterwinners from last season and welcome six freshman this season.
- Twelve of Iowa’s 16 student-athletes are underclassmen.
- Brie Orr, Halle Johnston, and Griere Hughes opted out of the 2021 season.
- Rutgers is 1-7 this season. The Scarlet Knights were swept by Northwestern to start the season, before beating Indiana for their lone win. Rutgers has lost five straight matches, dropping their most recent matches in sweeps against No. 4 Nebraska and No. 1 Wisconsin.
- Last season, Rutgers was 8-23 overall and 2-18 in the Big Ten.
- The Scarlet Knights are averaging 10.5 kills, 9.3 assists,12.3 digs per set, and 1.9 blocks per set.
- Offensively, Rutgers is led Beka Kojadinovic and Kamila Cieslik. Kojadinovic, a senior opposite hitter from Belgrade, Serbia, leads the team with 76 kills and averages 2.81 kills per set. Cieslik, a senior opposite hitter from Knoxville, Tennessee, trails only Kojadinovic with 68 kills and averages 2.33 kills per set.
- Defensively, Rutgers is led by freshman defensive specialist Madyson Chitty and redshirt junior middle blocker Shealyn McNamara. Chitty leads Rutgers with 71 digs averaging 2.63 digs per set. McNamara leads the team with 25 blocks, averaging almost one block per set.
- Rutgers is coached by Caitlin Schweihofer, who is in her first season at the helm. Previously, Schweihofer coached at Northeastern University. At Northeastern in 2019, the Huskies ranked in the top three in the Colonial Athletic Association for hitting percentage, kills, digs, and assists.
COACHING STAFF ADDITIONS
- Iowa welcomed two new assistants to its staff after the 2019 season.
- Dave Brown joined the Hawkeyes as an assistant coach and recruiting coordinator on Jan. 21, 2020. Prior to Iowa, Brown was the associate head coach and recruiting coordinator at Loyola-Chicago where he helped the Ramblers set a single-season record for conference wins (14) and most total wins (21) since 2004 in 2019. In his first season at Loyola, Brown was one of 11 NCAA Division I women’s coaches Thirty Under 30 Award recipients from the AVCA for up-and-coming young coaches.
- Former Hawkeye Alyssa Klostermann joined the Iowa staff as a volunteer assistant coach in December. As a three-time captain for the Hawkeyes from 2013-16, Klostermann appeared in 103 matches and finished her career No. 11 on Iowa’s all-time assists list (1,006). Klostermann recently coached club and high school volleyball in Minnesota, winning the 5AAA Minnesota state championship at Wayzata High School in 2019.
FOLLOW THE HAWKEYES
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