No. 11 Stanford Hosts USF and Saint Mary's For Home Openers

Sept. 16, 2009

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THIS WEEK: Stanford will host San Francisco and Saint Mary's for its home openers, Sept. 18-19. The matches will be part of the Pac-10/West Coast Conference Challenge, as both the Dons and Gaels will also play at Cal next weekend. First serve against USF is scheduled for 7 p.m., while the match with Saint Mary's is slated for 4 p.m.

LOOKING AHEAD: The Cardinal will open Pac-10 play next Friday, Sept. 25, across the Bay at rival California. The match will be televised live by FSN at 7 p.m.

CATCH THE CARDINAL: Fans can catch this week's matches on Live stats available via Gametracker at KZSU radio will also be broadcasting both matches at 90.1 FM or online at

PROMOTIONS: For this week's matches the first 1,000 fans to visit the Marketing Table on the Maples Concourse will recieve a free volleyball magnet schedule card. For more information on this season's promotions see the women's volleyball pricing guide at

SOCIAL NETWORKING: Stanford Volleyball has joined Facebook and Twitter! Become a fan on Facebook by searching for the 'Stanford Women's Volleyball' page. Follow the Cardinal at to get updates on the team this season. Both sites will be updated live during matches this year.

CHALK TALK/HOSPITALITY ROOM: The dates for the 2009 Chalk Talk and Hospitality Room for members of the Buck/Cardinal Club have been set. Coach Dunning's chalk talks will take place at 5 p.m. in the Maples Media Room on Oct. 10 vs. Washington, Oct. 31 vs. UCLA, Nov. 14 vs. Oregon State and Nov. 27 vs. California. The hospitality room will be availabe postgame Oct. 25 vs. Arizona and Nov. 14 vs. Oregon State in the Maples VIP Room.

PARKING: The Maples Parking lot is now open for limited Volleyball parking. Overflow parking can be found at the Track House and Varsity (Sunken Diamond) Lots. DON'T FORGET - This Saturday, Sept. 19, the Stanford Football team will also be playing at 6 p.m. following the volleyball match. Please plan to arrive early and enter campus via Serra Dr. The Maples lot will open at 2:30 p.m. When the lot is full, overflow parking will be available at IM South off of El Camino, near Churchill. Parking Maps

LAST WEEK: Stanford participated in the Honolulu Advertiser Volleyball Challenge last weekend, finishing with a 2-1 record. In its first match, a 3-0 rout of Texas-San Antonio, the Cardinal hit a season-high .554 with 42 kills on 74 attempts with just one error. SR Janet Okogbaa led the team with 16 kills and career high .842 attack percentage (16-0-19). Stanford also swept Weber State as JR Cassidy Lichtman recorded her fourth double-double of the season with 10 kills and 14 assists. In the final match against No. 6 Hawai'i the Cardinal fell in three sets, 27-25, 25-21, 25-22.

ALL-AMERICAN FIREPOWER: Stanford returns two-time All-American Alix Klineman for the 2009 season. The junior outside hitter is one of the nation's six returning first-team honorees, and one of only seven two-time All-Americans back for 2009. Klineman has led the team in kills in both of her first two seasons with the Cardinal. Stanford has won back-to-back Pac-10 championships and reached the national championship match during both of those years. BLOCK PARTY: Senior Janet Okogbaa leads the Pac-10 and ranks 14th nationally with 1.46 blocks per set. She registered a new career high with eight blocks against Florida on Sept. 4. As a team, Stanford is 36th in the country with 2.57 blocks per set.

TRIPLE THREAT: Junior Cassidy Lichtman has played several different positions for the Cardinal in her career. Currently, Lichtman leads the team with 95 kills (3.39 kps) and is hitting .402. She is also second on the squad with 108 assists and 60 digs. Lichtman more than doubled her career high in kills after registering 23 aginst LSU in the season opener. Against No. 5 Florida, Lichtman turned in a triple-double (16 kills, 17 assists, 11 digs) and against San Jose State, the junior set a new career high, hitting .600 (10-1-15) against the Spartans.

DIGGING HER WAY TO THE TOP: Junior libero Gabi Ailes has already claimed the top spot in the Stanford record book for digs in a season (533) and digs per set (4.26) in a season. With 1,138 digs to date, Ailes has climbed into the top-10 on the career list and will make a run for the record of 1,597 set by Kristin Richards from 2003-06.

ALMOST PERFECT: Senior middle blocker Janet Okogbaa was 16-0-19 against Texas-San Antonio for a career high .842 hitting percentage on Sept. 10. For the weekend, the Tampa, Fla., native was 36-2-77 (4.00 kps) and a .608 attack percentage. She is also second on the team with 95.5 points to date.

CHASING 1,000: Alix Klineman is 19 kills away from 1,000 for her career. The junior could supass the milestone before the Pac-10 season even begins and is on pace to finish her career at Stanford in the top-5 in career kills.

VETERAN LEADERSHIP: The 2009 Stanford squad will rely on its upperclassmen for leadership this year. The senior class of Joanna Evans, Alex Fisher and Janet Okogbaa holds an impressive 93-11 record through three seasons, earning three Pac-10 titles and three trips to the Final Four. Juniors Gabi Ailes, Alix Klineman and Cassidy Lichtman are all returning starters who have made significant contributions in their first two years on The Farm. Overall, the Cardinal boasts 10 players who have been to a national championship match, including six who have taken the team to the coveted match twice.

NATIONAL POLL: Stanford drops one spot this week in the American Volleyball Coaches Association poll to No. 11. Last week, the Cardinal posted a 2-1 record, sweeping Texas-San Antonio and Weber State before falling to sixth-ranked Hawai'i in Honolulu. Defending national champion Penn State remains in the top spot in the poll, while Texas, Washington, Hawai'i and Florida round out the top-5 this week.

PICKED THIRD: The Stanford women's volleyball team was tabbed by the league's coaches to finish third in the Pac-10. Stanford totaled 74 points in the preseason poll, six points below second-place California. Washington was the unanimous choice to win the conference. Once again, the Pac-10 sent six teams to the postseason in 2008. The conference has taken home five of the last eight NCAA titles. The coaches have correctly picked the Pac-10 champion in 13 of the previous 20 polls.

2008 IN REVIEW: In 2008, Stanford posted a 31-4 record and won an unprecedented 12th Pac-10 title. The team finished the year with a postseason run to its 14th NCAA title match, where it fell to Penn State in three sets. On the year, Stanford bested 16 ranked opponents, held a .314 average hitting percentage to just .164 by opponents, and won 23 matches by 3-0 margins. Three players - Foluke Akinradewo, Cynthia Barboza, Alix Klineman - were named First Team All-Americans, tying a school record for first team representatives. Akinradewo was also tabbed Volleyball Magazine Co-National Player of the Year after shattering the NCAA's career hitting percentage record by more than 20 points.

TAKING ON THE BEST: Once again, head coach John Dunning has lined up one of the most challenging schedules in the nation for the Cardinal. Stanford is scheduled to play 12 regular-season matches against teams ranked in the preseason poll, and 10 against teams that participated in the 2008 NCAA Tournament. Four teams that made the preseason top-10 hail from the Pac-10 Conference.

HEAD COACH John Dunning: Beginning his ninth season at the helm of the Cardinal program, head coach John Dunning is one of the most accomplished coaches in the collegiate volleyball world. Dunning has four national championships under his belt, has taken his teams to nine Final Fours and carried six of his eight teams at Stanford to the national championship match.

MILESTONE FOR DUNNING: Head coach John Dunning is 19 victories away from 700 career-wins, and could reach that milestone in 2009. In 24 years as a head coach, Dunning is 681-142 (.827), giving him a winning percentage that ranks among the top five all-time for Division I coaches. Dunning is 244-40, now in his ninth season on The Farm, and the all-time winningest coach in Pac-10 history by percentage (.859).

SCOUTING SAN FRANCISCO: San Fracisco is 5-5 to start the year for head coach Gilad Doron. The Dons won the 2009 Hornet Invitational last week, defeating Sacramento State, Alabama and Fresno State in Sacramento. Senior libero Haley Carroll set the San Francisco all-time digs record against Sacramento State and captured tournament MVP honors, averaging 5.73 digs per set (63 total) to go along with 0.55 aces. On the season, junior outside hitter Sarah Mandala leads the team with 174 kills (4.70 kps) and has registered 81 digs and 20 kills.

THE SERIES WITH THE DONS: Stanford is a perfect 16-0 all-time against San Francisco. The Cardinal swept the Dons in the last meeting in 2004, 30-27, 30-13, 30-11. In fact, Stanford has never dropped a set to USF.

SCOUTING SAINT MARY'S: Saint Mary's is 7-1 so far in 2009, including a current six-match winning streak. The Gaels are 2-0 on the road, including their most recent 3-1 victory at San Diego State on Sept. 13. Freshman Lauren Corp leads the team with 103 kills, while hitting .304 and has recorded 23 blocks. Junior setter Kapua Kamana'o has controlled the offense for SMC, totaling 296 assists to date.

THE SERIES WITH THE GAELS: The Cardinal holds an 8-2 advantage in the series with the Gaels. The two squads met last season at the Cal Poly Invitational in San Luis Obispo, Calif., where Stanford swept Saint Mary's 25-16, 25-23, 25-13. Alix Klineman led the team with eight kills and two solo blocks in the win.

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