2007 Pac-10 Volleyball: Oregon State
Aug. 7, 2007
The Beavers were challenged last year with a young squad the included nine freshmen. However, with 10 of the 11 returning letterwinners seeing action in at least half of the team's 93 games played last season, coach Terry Liskevych has a Beaver squad that is now loaded with depth and experience and will work to convert that into a successful campaign in 2007.
Sophomore outside hitter Rachel Rourke was named to the Pac-10 All-Freshman team after posting stellar numbers last season. She led the squad and was fourth in the league with 4.25 kills per game (387), while her 4.83 points per game ranked seventh in the Pac-10. She was also the leading server for the Beavers, picking up 27 aces last year. She'll pair up with senior outside hitter Kristin Murray (201 kills/2.23 kpg, team-leading 199 digs/2.21 dpg), to provide OSU with a formidable 1-2 punch on the outside.
Sophomore middle blocker Lexie Rathgeber led the Beavers at the net with 89 blocks (1.00 bpg) and earned honorable mention Pac-10 All-Freshman accolades.
Depth at setter. Sophomore Camilla Ah-Hoy (417 assists/7.32 apg) and junior Ashley Evans (486 assists/5.34 apg) split time at that position last year, so Liskevych will have the option to go with the hot hand.
The Beavers also have a pair of experienced liberos that split time last season in juniors Natalie Hooper and Jennifer Fitz. Hooper posted 114 digs (1.50 dpg), while Fitz chipped in with 124 digs (1.48 dpg).
It'll be tough for the Beavers to use the home court advantage as they will play their first 13 matches of the season on the road or in neutral venues.
Does last season's 0-18 league record have a lingering effect on the team's psyche?