No. 4 Cardinal Travels To BYU Tournament

Aug. 30, 2006

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COMING UP: No. 4 Stanford (1-0) hits the road for the BYU Tournament in Provo, Utah this Friday, September 1 through Saturday, September 2. The Cardinal will first face host BYU (3-0) on Friday at 7:00 pm (MT). On Saturday, Stanford will take on Virginia Commonwealth (2-1) at 10:00 am before returning to the court to square off against Texas A&M Corpus Christi (1-2) at 5:00 pm.

CARDINAL DOWNS GAUCHOS: The Cardinal opened the 2006 season with a 3-0 victory over UC Santa Barbara Saturday night at Maples Pavilion, 30-20, 30-26, 30-25. Senior Kristin Richards and junior Foluke Akinradewo combined for 27 kills, while sophomore outside hitter Cynthia Barboza collected another 10 kills. Sophomore libero Jessica Fishburn led the squad with 14 digs, while Richards added 11 digs. Junior setter Bryn Kehoe ended the night with 30 assists, including 11 in the final game. Akinradewo also led the squad with six blocks, followed by Kehoe with four.

ABOUT THE COUGARS: The Cougars (3-0) host the BYU Tournament after capturing the UCF Fall Invitational last weekend in three sweeps. BYU downed Florida International, 30-28, 30-26, 30-24, on Friday. On Saturday, the Cougars topped Central Florida, 30-25, 30-16, 30-18, before beating Stetson 30-13, 30-20, 30-25, to claim the event title. Lindsy Hartsock, the 2005 Mountain West Conference Player of the Year and All-American, currently leads BYU's offense in hitting percentage (.500) with seven kills, while Chelsea Goodman has collected 14 kills and seven digs in three games. Head coach Jason Watson enters his second season after earning 2005 MWC Coach of the Year honors and guiding his squad to a 14-2 record. BYU returns 11 letterwinners and six starters in 2006. Stanford currently leads the series against BYU, 7-3.

ABOUT THE RAMS: The Virginia Commonwealth Rams (2-1) head to Provo after collecting two wins at the Duke University Invitational last weekend. The Rams opened with wins over Gardner-Webb Friday, 30-23, 30-25, 30-27, and Marquette Saturday (30-23, 20-30, 34-32, 30-26). VCU then fell to host Duke, 24-30, 22-30, 28-30, in the tournament finale Saturday night. Senior outside hitter Ludmila Fancescatto was named the Colonial Athletic Association's Player of the Week after tallying 54 kills and 42 digs with a .299 hitting average over 10 games. Ana Luiza De Borja is the Rams' second-leading hitter with 33 kills, 24 digs and a .151 hitting percentage. Head coach James Finley is in his second season after leading the Rams to a conference championship, NCAA Tournament appearance and 22-12 record in 2005. VCU returns six players from the 2005 team. This weekend marks the first meeting between the Rams and the Cardinal.

ABOUT THE ISLANDERS: Texas A&M Corpus Christi enters the weekend 1-2 after the TCU/Molten Invitational last Friday and Saturday. The Islanders opened with a win over Loyola (MD), 30-22, 30-28, 30-22, on Friday. On Saturday, Corpus Christi fell to host TCU, 30-24, 18-30, 27-30, 22-30, before collecting a second loss to South Carolina, 24-30, 19-30, 17-30. Sophomore outside hitter Kasey McBrearty leads the squad in kills with 31, while senior setter Paula Araujo has tallied 99 assists, 18 kills and a .378 hitting percentage. Head coach Kimberly Martinez is in her first season with the Islanders after serving as the lead assistant at Texas-El Paso for two seasons. Corpus Christi returns seven players from the squad that finished 14-15 in 2005. Saturday's match is the first between Stanford and Texas A&M Corpus Christi.

UP NEXT: Following this weekend's BYU Tournament, the Cardinal will next travel to Honolulu, HI for the Waikiki Beach Marriott Volleyball Challenge on September 7-9. Stanford is set to compete against Northwestern on Thursday, September 7 (4:30 pm local time), Fairfield on Friday, September 8 (4:30 pm) and host Hawai'i on Saturday, September 9 (7:00 pm).

CSTV/AVCA TOP 25 POLL: Stanford opened the 2006 season with a No. 4 ranking in the CSTV/AVCA Division I Preseason Top 25 Coaches Poll, garnering 13 first-place votes. Nebraska took top honors in the preseason poll with 14 first-place votes, followed by Penn State in second and defending national champion Washington in third. Local squad Santa Clara notched a sixth ranking, while Pac-10 foes UCLA and USC garnered 10th and 14th rankings, respectively. Cal was picked 17th in the coaches' poll and Arizona was the final ranked Pac-10 team at 18th.

PAC-10 PRESEASON COACHES POLL: The Cardinal has been picked to win this year's conference title by league coaches. Stanford picked up eight first-place votes in the preseason poll. UCLA has been ranked second in the Pac-10 with two first-place votes, while defending national champion Washington was picked third. Conference coaches have correctly picked the Pac-10 champion in 10 of the previous 17 polls.

CARDINAL HAS THREE ON ALL-AMERICAN SQUAD: Three Cardinal players were named All-Americans by the AVCA (American Volleyball Coaches Association) for their efforts during the 2005 season. Kristin Richards was named to the AVCA First Team, as well as the AVCA All-Pacific Region and All-Pac-10 teams. Richards led the Cardinal in kills (544, 4.90 kpg, #3 Pac-10) to rank sixth-best in school history for a single season. Foluke Akinradewo, the Pac-10 Freshman of the Year last season, was a Second-Team All-American selection, while Bryn Kehoe was named to the AVCA Third Team despite missing seven matches due to injury. Akinradewo lead the Cardinal and ranked third in the Pac-10 in hitting percentage at .397. Kehoe finished the year with 13.14 assists per game to rank second-best in the Pac-10 and still owns Stanford's single season assists record with 1,637 in 2005.

HEAD COACH John Dunning: John Dunning opens his sixth season as head coach for the Cardinal. During Dunning's tenure, the Cardinal have captured two NCAA championships (2001, 2004), as well as a runner-up finish in 2002. Dunning has amassed a 146-26 record on The Farm and a 583-128 in his 21 years of coaching at Stanford and Pacific, ranking him among the top five winningest active coaches in NCAA history (Division I). In 2005, Dunning was the recipient (along with Penn State's Russ Rose) of the USA Volleyball All-Time Great Coach Award.

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