Fifth-Ranked Stanford Travels To Oregon State and No. 15 Oregon

Oct. 12, 2009

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THIS WEEK: Stanford travels to Oregon State, Friday, Oct. 16 to take on the Beavers who stand at 2-3 in the Pac-10. The Cardinal will face No. 15 Oregon, Saturday, Oct. 17. The Ducks are also currently 2-3 in the conference. Both matches are slated for 7 p.m.

LOOKING AHEAD: The Cardinal will return home for two matches against the Arizona schools, Oct. 23 and Oct. 25. Stanford will host Arizona State on Friday and No. 18 Arizona on Sunday.

CATCH THE CARDINAL: Fan’s can catch both matches on KZSU radio at 90.1 FM or online at http://kzsu.stanford.edu/. Live stats will also be available both nights via Gametracker at www.GoStanford.com.

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 twitter.com/StanfordWVB to get updates on the team this season. Both sites will be updated live during matches this year.

LAST WEEK: Stanford knocked off a pair of ranked opponents, including previously undefeated and third-ranked Washington. Behind Cassidy Lichtman’s fifth triple-double of the season, the Cardinal defeated Washington State, 3-1, Friday. Senior Janet Okogbaa led Stanford in its upset over the Huskies, setting new career highs with 21 kills and 36 attempts. For her efforts Okogbaa was named Pac-10 Player of the Week.

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.

TRIPLE THREAT: Junior Cassidy Lichtman has played several different positions for the Cardinal in her career. Currently, Lichtman is second on the team with 187 kills (3.28 kps) and is hitting .281. She is also second on the squad 142 digs and third with 191 assists. 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 her first career triple-double (16 kills, 17 assists, 11 digs) and versus San Jose State, the junior set a new career high, hitting .600 (10-1-15) against the Spartans. She now has five tiple-doubles on the season.

BLOCK PARTY: Senior Janet Okogbaa is third in the Pac-10 and ranks 31st nationally with 1.33 blocks per set. She registered a new career high with eight blocks against Florida on Sept. 4. Junior Alix Klineman’s five solo blocks at UCLA are the most by a Pac-10 player this season. As a team, Stanford is 28th in the country with 2.58 blocks per set, posting a season-high 15 blocks versus Washington on Oct. 10.

CHASING 1,000: Alix Klineman posted her 1,000th-career kill in the opening set of the match against Saint Mary’s on Sept. 19. Klineman registered a season- and team-high 24 kills at USC on Oct. 3, and the junior now has 1,113 career kills. She is the 12th Cardianl player to reach 1,000 career kills. The All-american leads the team and is seventh in the Pac-10 with 3.69 kills per set. She is on pace to finish her career at Stanford in the top-5 in career kills.

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 1,283 digs to date, Ailes is currently fifth on the career list and will make a run for the record of 1,597 set by Kristin Richards from 2003-06. She needs just three digs to move ahead of Stanford great Kerri Walsh and 37 to claim the third spot on the list.

ALMOST PERFECT: Senior middle blocker Janet Okogbaa was 16-0-19 against Texas-San Antonio for a career high .842 hitting percentage, marking the highest attack percentage by a Pac-10 player this season. At the Honolulu Avertiser Volleyball Challenge, the Tampa, Fla., native was 36-2-77 (4.00 kps) and a .608 attack percentage. She is third on the team with 200.5 points.

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 enters the top-5 in the American Volleyball Coaches Association poll for the first time this season, its highest ranking of the year. Last week, the Cardinal defeated No. 25 Washington State and No. 3 Washington at home. Defending national champion Penn State remains in the top spot in the poll, while Texas, Hawai’i and Washington remain ahead of Stanford in the top-5.

CATCH A GLIMPSE: Four of the Cardinal’s conference matches will be televised on Fox Sports Net. The first three weekend of conference play, the Cardinal have been televised, including at California and at USC and versus Washington. The other TV match for Stanford is scheduled for at Washington on Nov. 6.

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. 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.

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: Now in 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 13 victories away from 700 career-wins, and could reach that milestone in 2009. In 24 years as a head coach, Dunning is 687-143 (.828), giving him a winning percentage that ranks among the top five all-time for Division I coaches. Dunning is 250-41, now in his ninth season on The Farm, and the all-time winningest coach in Pac-10 history by percentage (.859).

SCOUTING OREGON STATE: The Beavers are currently 11-6 on the season and are coming off a five-set win over Arizona State. OSU is led by senior outside hitter Rachel Rourke. She is second in the conference in kills (4.52 kps) and points (5.18 pps). Senior setter Camilla Ah-Hoy has controlled the offense for the Beavers averaging 10.31 assists per set, while also adding 2.83 digs per set.

THE SERIES WITH THE BEAVERS: Stanford is a perfect 48-0 against Oregon State. Last season, the Cardinal swpet the Beavers in both matches. In fact, nine ot of the last 10 meetings between the two squads have been 3-0 Stanford victories.

SCOUTING OREGON: Oregon is 12-3 overall and split its matches at the Arizona schools last week, defeating Arizona State before falling at Arizona. The loss dopped the Ducks four spots in the top-25 to No. 15. The Ducks are led by seniors Sonja Newcombe and Neticia Enesi. Newcombe is leading the team and ranks fifth in the conference with 3.88 kills per set, while Enesi is sixth in the Pac-10 with 1.17 blocks per set and ranks second hitting .459.

THE SERIES WITH THE DUCKS: The Cardinal holds a 46-2 all-time record against the Ducks, including 16-0 under head coach John Dunning. In the last meeting on Nov. 26, 2008, Stanford defeated Oregon, 3-1, in Eugene. The win clinched the Cardinal’s third-straight outright Pac-10 Championship.

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