Top Ranked Cardinal Begin Road Trip At Illinois State

Sept. 9, 2002

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STANFORD PREPARE FOR A WEEK ON THE ROAD: The No. 1 ranked Stanford Cardinal women's volleyball team (6-0, 0-0 Pac-10) hit the road to face Illinois State (2-3, 0-0 Missouri Valley) on Wednesday, September 11 at Horton Field House in Normal, Ill. at 7 p.m. CT. The Cardinal will then fly to Florida to participate in the Campus USA Credit Union Invitational on September 13 and 14. Stanford will take on Houston (7-0, 0-0 Conference USA) on Friday at 5 p.m. ET and play either Ohio (6-0, 0-0 Mid-American) or No. 6 Florida (5-1, 0-0 SEC) on Saturday.

CARDINAL WIN STANFORD INVITATIONAL: The defending national champs defeated San Jose State (3-1), Cal Poly (3-0) and No. 8 Utah (3-1) to capture the Stanford Invitational title. Senior rightside hitter Ashley Ivy was named tournament MVP while teammates Sara McGee and Ogonna Nnamani were tabbed all-tournament. Stanford went 4-0 last week including their win over St. Mary's (Calif.) on Monday. For the week, McGee averaged 4.07 kills and 1.14 blocks while hitting at a .565 clip ... Ivy averaged 2.71 kills, 1.07 aces, 2.14 digs and 1.50 blocks, showing her versatility.

ABOUT THE REDBIRDS: Illinois State is coached by Sharon Dingman who is in her third season at the helm of the program ... Last week, the Redbirds fell to No. 16 Wisconsin (0-3) and No. 17 Texas A&M (1-3) ... ISU is led by Erin Jones (2.78 kpg/2.44 dpg) and Emily Kabbes (2.50 kpg/0.94 bpg) ... Stanford holds a 3-0 advantage in the all-time series ... The last time the two teams met was in 1988 where the Cardinal defeated the Redbirds, 3-0, in Normal ... ISU will try to snap a three-match losing streak against Stanford.

ABOUT THE COUGARS: Houston is coached by Bill Walton who enters his 17th year at the helm of the program ... The Cougars return three starters from last year's squad that finished 16-11 overall, including Jenny Tanneberger (6-0 Sr. MH) ... Tanneberger was named Conference USA Player of the Week as the San Antonio native tallied 66 kills, 19 digs and 12 blocks to help lead the Cougars to a 2002 Crowne Plaza/Rice Invitational championship title last week ... Stanford leads the all-time series between the two schools, 6-0 ... The last time the two teams met was in 1999, as the Cardinal defeated the Cougars, 3-0, in Houston.

ABOUT THE GATORS: Florida is ranked No. 6 in the latest USA Today/AVCA Coaches Poll ... The Gators are coached by Mary Wise who enters her 13th season at the helm of the program ... Florida went 2-1 last weekend at the BYU Tournament, defeating Oral Roberts (3-1), BYU (3-0) and falling to then No. 3 USC (0-3) ... The Gators return three starters from last year's squad that finished 28-2 overall, advancing to the NCAA Regional Finals ... They are led by Nicole McCray (3.42 kpg/2.42 dpg/1.26 bpg) and Jacque Robinson (3.74 kpg) ... Gator Aury Cruz should be back with the team after playing for Puerto Rico in the World Championships in Germany ... Stanford and Florida have only met on one previous occasion - In 1994, the Cardinal defeated the Gators, 3-1, in Gainsville.

ABOUT THE BOBCATS: Ohio is coached by Mike Lessinger who begins his third season at the helm of the program ... The Bobcats return five starters from last year's squad that finished 11-16 overall ... The team is led by Laura Hageman (2.76 kpg/2.86 dpg/1.43 bpg) and Jessica Jones (2.60 kpg/1.60 dpg) ... Stanford and Ohio have never met before on the court ... As a team, Ohio is averaging 2.00 service aces per game.

CARDINAL RUN RECORD TO 25 CONSECUTIVE WINS: The Stanford women's volleyball team has won 25 consecutive matches dating back to Oct. 19, 2001 and have won 39 of the last 41 matches.

STANFORD PICKED TO WIN CONFERENCE TITLE IN PRESEASON POLL: Stanford, which won its ninth Pac-10 Conference volleyball title last season on the way to a fifth NCAA Championship, was picked to defend the Conference crown by the Pac-10 volleyball coaches. The Cardinal, who received 88 total votes, edged out second place USC by four votes. In addition, Stanford received seven of 10 first-place votes. Arizona finished third with 73 votes, followed by UCLA with 65 tallies. Washington State held the fifth place spot with 55 votes. Rounding out the poll was Oregon State, Arizona State, California, Washington and Oregon, respectively. The coaches have correctly picked the Pac-10 Champion in eight of the previous 13 polls.

TOM PULLING DOUBLE DUTY: Senior outside hitter and 2001 AVCA National Player of the Year Logan Tom is currently playing with the U.S. National Team in Dresden, Germany. The three-time All-American will rejoin the Cardinal squad after the World Championships which could run until the middle of September. Tom was named the NACWAA/State Farm Classic MVP earlier this season before she left for Germany. She was tabbed NCAA Final Four MVP as well as the Outstanding Player at Stanford's NCAA Regional last season. She was also named to the Pacfic All-Region team and 2001 Pac-10 Player of the Year. Tom, a three-time All-Pac-10 selection, became the eighth different Stanford player to garner Pac-10 Player of the Year honors. The 2000 Olympian helped lead the U.S. Women's National Team to a fourth-place finish at the 2000 Summer Olympic Games in Sydney.

NNAMANI HOMECOMING: All-American Ogonna Nnamani returns to her hometown of Normal, Ill. as Stanford takes on Illinois State on Wednesday night. Nnamani earned all-tournament honors last weekend at the Stanford Invitational to go with her all-tourney selection at the NACWAA/State Farm Classic. She leads the squad averaging 3.96 kills and 2.71 digs per game. The 6-1 outside hitter was tabbed ASICS/Volleyball Magazine National Freshman of the Year, Pacific Region Freshman of the Year and Pac-10 Freshman of the Year in 2001. Nnamani averaged 3.89 kills per game last season while hitting at a .329 clip. In postseason action, she averaged 3.94 kills and hit .376 on her way to being named to the NCAA Final Four all-tournament team. She also garnered first-team All-Pac-10 and second-team All-America honors in '01.

McGEE MANS THE MIDDLE: Junior middle blocker Sara McGee (Davis, Calif.) continues to put up impressive numbers early this season averaging 3.86 kills, 1.52 blocks while hitting at a .548 clip. McGee posted a career-high 20 kills (20-1-28) against No. 8 Utah on Saturday night and was named to the Stanford Invitational all-tournament team. She made her presence known as she patroled the middle in the State Farm Classic as she averaged 3.43 kills and 2.29 blocks en route to being named to the all-tournament team. The NCAA Regional all-tournament team selection was also named to the Pacific All-Region team as well as first-team All-Pac-10 last year. McGee dominated at the net for Stanford in 2001, leading the league in blocks with 1.55 per game and ranked among the top 10 nationally. In addition to her accolades for her performance on the court, she was tabbed a third-team selection on the 2001 Verizon Academic All-District VIII team - the only underclassman on the 18-member list.

IVY NAMED STANFORD INVITATIONL MVP: If you didn't know about senior rightside hitter Ashley Ivy's (Arlington, TX) wicked jump serve before the 2001 NCAA championship semi and final matches, you do now. Ivy tallied six service aces during the two matches, averaging one service ace per game. Her tough serving and tenacious defense, led the lefty to be named to the Final Four all-tournament team. Ivy was recently named MVP at the Stanford Invitational after again showing her lethal serve. In two matches on Saturday, she tallied 11 service aces (seven games), including six against Cal Poly. The six aces ties her career high and ranks fifth all-time on The Farm for a single match. Ivy is averaging 2.81 kills, 2.24 digs, 0.90 service aces and 1.19 blocks per game this season.

DID YOU KNOW? Stanford has won 24 consecutive home matches dating back to last season ... For her career, Logan Tom is averaging 5.08 kills per game (1,421 kills in 280 games) - this ranks her second all-time in the Pac-10 for highest kills average ... Stanford has amassed an amazing 670-169-4 all-time record since 1976 (.795 winning percentage), and has finished in the top 10 nationally in 20 of the last 21 seasons ... Stanford has lost five or more matches in a season just once in the last 10 years, and is 234-29 (.889) in the last seven years alone ... Stanford has reached the Final Four 13 times in the last 21 seasons, and produced 42 All-American honors in the last 20 years.

MAJOR RULE CHANGE FOR 2002 COLLEGIATE SEASON: The face of collegiate volleyball will see some changes this season as the libero position is introduced. The libero is a designated back-row player, intended to be used as a ball-control specialist. The libero is allowed to replace any player in the back row without counting as a substitution. There is no limit to the number of libero replacements a team is allowed. The pronunciation is 'LEE-bah-ro'.

CARDINAL HEAD COACH JOHN DUNNING: Second-year head coach John Dunning made his first year on The Farm a memorable one. He was tabbed AVCA National Coach of the Year after guiding the Cardinal to its fifth NCAA National Championship in December. Dunning was also named Pacific Region Coach of the Year as well as the 2001 Pac-10 Coach of the Year. In his first year at the helm, he led the Cardinal to a 33-2 overall record and its ninth Pac-10 Championship. Dunning, who spent 16 seasons at Pacific, compiled an impressive 468-104 (.818) record during his tenure. He led the Tigers to two NCAA Championships, a NCAA runner-up finish, five Big West Conference titles and 16 consecutive NCAA postseason tournament bids. Dunning earned his bachelor of arts degree in mathematics and economics from San Diego State in 1973. He coached volleyball and taught at Fremont High School from 1973 to 1980, then moved on to Saratoga High School, working in the same capacity from 1980-83. He returned to Fremont High School in 1984.

ON THE RADIO: All of the Stanford women's volleyball matches will be broadcast on KZSU-FM radio (Stanford student radio station) as well as on the internet. Aaron Levine will handle the play-by-play and color commentary duties.

T.V. TIME: The Stanford women's volleyball team is scheduled to appear twice at home on FOX Sports Net during the 2002 season. Stanford's USC match on Friday, Sept. 27 at 7 p.m. and the Cardinal's Thursday, Nov. 7 match against Arizona at 7 p.m. will be broadcast. Stanford will also appear on FOX on Thursday, Oct. 10 at Arizona State. All matches will be shown on a delayed basis by FOX Sports Net on Saturday mornings at 9:30 a.m. or 10:00 a.m. local time (check local listings).

STANFORD WINS FIFTH NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP IN 2001: The Stanford women's volleyball team claimed its fifth national championship with a decisive 3-0 victory over then-No. 1 Long Beach State. AVCA 2001 National Player of theYear Logan Tom tallied a match-high 25 kills and 12 digs along with five blocks on her way to being named Final Four MVP. Freshman Ogonna Nnamani, junior Ashley Ivy and senior Robyn Lewis were named to the all-tournament team.

YAMASAKI NOTCHES DOUBLE-DOUBLE: Senior Lindsey Yamasaki (Oregon City, OR) is back for a final season of volleyball after a three year absence. The two-sport athlete (volleyball/basketball), played both sports for only one season on The Farm, and elected to compete in basketball only for her remaining years. After completing her basketball eligibility in 2001-02, Yamasaki was drafted by WNBA's Miami Sol and spent the summer with the team. With one year of athletic eligibilty remaining, She was a 1999 All-Pac-10 honorable mention selection as well as a Pac-10 All-Freshman pick. A starter as a freshman in '99, Yamasaki averaged 2.54 kills and 2.04 digs per game for Stanford.

USA Today/AVCA(September 9, 2002)

1. Stanford2. USC3. Hawaii4. Nebraska5. Long Beach State6. Florida7. Northern Iowa8. Utah9. Ohio State10. Pepperdine11. Penn State12. Wisconsin13. Minnesota14. UCLA15. Arizona16. Texas A&M17. Colorado State18. UC Santa Barbara19. Michigan State20. North Carolina21. Pacific22. Santa Clara23. South Carolina24. Kansas State25. Washington State

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