No. 21 Sun Devil Volleyball Travels To Oregon And Oregon State
Oct. 15, 2002
What's On Tap:
The Sun Devils (8-4, 4-3 Pac-10) return to the road this weekend traveling to play at Oregon and at Oregon State. The Devils are coming off consecutive weekend splits, most recently with Stanford and California. Arizona State wraps up the first half of its 2002 Pac-10 slate this weekend by taking its 5-2 road record to McArthur Court Friday (7 p.m.) and then travel to Corvallis for a Saturday match vs. the Beavers (7 p.m.). The Devils will then travel to Tucson to take on rival Arizona (Oct. 25) before returning home for Washington State and Washington (Nov. 1-2).
Sun Devils Move Up to No. 21:
The Arizona State Volleyball team earned a No. 24 ranking in the USA Today/AVCA poll two weeks ago and moved up in the polls for the second consecutive week with a No. 21 ranking this week. Now 3-3 against ranked opponents this year, the Devils have notched wins against No. 13 Pacific (3-2; 9/7), No. 11 UCLA (3-1; 9/21) and most recently No. 12 Arizona (3-0; 9/27). ASU's national ranking is the first for the program since Sept. 3, 1996 when they were No. 23. The last time ASU finished a season ranked in the poll was 1995 when they were No. 11 and made an appearance in the NCAA Sweet 16. ASU Volleyball, celebrating its 30th Anniversary this year (1973-2002), has now been ranked 127 times in school history.
Recapping Last Week:
The Sun Devils earned a split at home last weekend, getting swept by fourth-ranked Stanford and then pulled off a come-from-behind victory against the Cal Golden Bears. ASU now stands at 8-4 overall and 4-3 in Pac-10 play with the split, marking the best start in league play since also going 4-3 in 2000. The Devils couldn't get much of anything started vs. the Cardinal, losing in three games by scores of 20-30, 18-30, 16-30. Julia Leddy and Juliana Escobar each led the Devils with eight kills. Down 2-0 to the Golden Bears, ASU stormed back to win the next three games and pull off a 3-2 come-from-behind win to salvage the weekend split. Leddy, Jodi Smith and Alicia Akporiaye each had eight total blocks to help the Devils total a season-high 20.5 total blocks.
Devils Remain Perfect in Five-Game Matches:
Arizona State improved to 5-0 in five-game matches with the 3-2 come-from-behind victory over the Cal Golden Bears last weekend (10/11). In two of ASU's five-game wins, the Devils have had to battle back from an 0-2 deficit to keep their perfect record. ASU's five-game victories have come against Pacific (9/7), Clemson (9/14), Texas Tech (9/15), Washington (10/3) and Cal. Comparatively, ASU was 2-3 in five-game matches last year.
Pac-10 Proves to be Nation's Best:
With six teams ranked in the current AVCA/USA Today national poll and California (#26) and Washington (#36) inching towards the top 25, the Pac-10 has proven to be the nation's toughest conference. USC remains the only unbeaten team in the conference, as defending national champion Stanford has lost twice. The Devils are currently tied for fourth with Washington State.
Anglin Becomes Second Best Setter in ASU History:
With 58 assists last weekend, junior setter Cheryl Anglin gained sole possession of second place in the ASU career record books. With 2,994 in 68 career matches (11.74 per game average), Anglin moved past former Sun Devil Jennifer Helfrich, who dished out 2,956 assists as a four-year setter from 1989-92. Anglin already holds the single-season school record and freshman record when she had 1,452 in 2000.
Escobar Named Pac-10 Player of the Week:
Arizona State outside hitter Juliana Escobar was named Pac-10 Volleyball Player of the Week for Sept. 23-Sept. 29. Escobar recorded 20 kills (6.67 kpg) and 16 digs (5.33 dpg); both match highs in ASU's 3-0 win over rival Arizona to become ASU's 14th all-time Pac-10 POW. On the season, Escobar is fourth in the Pac-10 averaging 4.17 kills per game, eighth with 3.15 digs per game and second with 0.65 aces per game. She has recorded eight double-doubles (kills/digs) this year (out of ASU's 12 matches), seven of which have been 20+ kill matches.
Website | Season Stats
Arizona State will face an Oregon squad Friday night that has dropped 28 consecutive Pac-10 matches dating back to the 2000 season. The Ducks are 10-11 overall this year, but 0-7 in conference action, with six of their seven Pac-10 defeats coming in three-game sweeps. They are led by the 3.89 kpg from outside hitter Lindsay Closs. Newcomer Dariam Acevedo is averaging 2.90 kpg, 2.52 dpg and 3.52 points per game. ASU has won eight straight matches against the Ducks and have swept the season series in 11 of Patti Snyder-Park's 13 seasons as the Devils' head coach. ASU leads the all-time series 25-7 (24-2 under PSP) and is coming off a pair of three-game sweeps last year.
Scouting Oregon State:
Website | Weekly Release | Season Stats
Arizona State will face a struggling Oregon State team that has endured several key injuries from top players this year. Joscelyn Hannaford (2.74 kpg) and Katrina Nelson (2.55 kpg) both did not play last weekend in a pair of sweeps at the hand of No. 13 UCLA and No. 1 USC. The Beavers are 6-10 overall heading into play this weekend and 1-6 in Pac-10 play. OSU's only Pac-10 win came against in-state rival Oregon. Oregon State has lost 10 of its last 11 matches. Megan McMillan leads OSU with 3.32 kpg and 3.16 dpg. The Devils have had recent trouble playing at Gill Coliseum, going 3-2 since 1995 in Corvallis. ASU leads the all-time series 23-10 and is 16-10 under current head coach Patti Snyder-Park (1989-P).
ASU Wins #500:
The three-game sweep of then 12th-ranked Arizona not only ended a five-match losing streak to the Wildcats, but also earned a milestone No. 500 all-time victory for the Sun Devil Volleyball program. Dating back to the perfect 21-0 season in the inaugural 1973 season, ASU is 501-349 (.589).
Aces Are Wild:
Led by the 15 service aces from junior Juliana Escobar, ASU recorded 34 service aces in the season-opening Carolina Classic. ASU has since added to that impressive number with 71 so far this season. The Devils are ranked fifth in the Pac-10 with 1.60 aces per game and junior outside hitter Juliana Escobar is second in the conference and in the top 15 in NCAA with 0.65 aces per game. ASU's 71 service aces in 12 matches this season are already 55% of the total number of aces the 2001 when the Sun Devils recorded 128. ASU's 16 aces vs. Pacific is the top performance by a Pac-10 team this season. Escobar's 31 already surpass last year's team leader (Jami Coughlin, 28). Her six aces against Creighton (9/6) rank tied for seventh most in ASU single-match history.
30 Years of Sun Devil Volleyball:
The Sun Devil Volleyball program continues its 30th year of competition this weekend by hosting rival Arizona at Wells Fargo Arena. The program has combined for an all-time 502-350 (.589%) record dating back to the first year in 1973. The 1973 season also provided the best record in school history, with the Sun Devils going 21-0 under the guidance of head coach Mary Littlewood. Four head coaches have guided the program to 16 appearances in postseason play, including a string of four straight regional appearances from 1985-88 and 1992-95. The program has finished in the AVCA Top 25 rankings nine times and has had five players earn AVCA All-America status. Since beginning play in the Pac-10 in 1986, ASU has had 14 Pac-10 Player of the Week awards.
2002 Sun Devil Player Notes...
#1 Mandy Stephens (6-3, Jr., MB/OP, Napa, Calif.) --
Has seen action in seven matches this year, including one start vs. Cal (10/11)... averaging 1.73 kills per game... had six kills in victory over Creighton (9/7), hitting .273 in that match... also had six kills vs. Stanford (10/10) while hitting .462... inserted into lineup for an added block and an effective hitter. Career Notes: Averaged 2.51 kills per game while playing in 39 games and 18 matches in 2001... has a career 2.14 kpg average in 34 matches as a Sun Devil.
#2 Alicia Akporiaye (6-2, Fr., OH, Tucson, Ariz.) --
Has started all 12 matches this year at opposite hitter... averaging 2.04 kills and 2.36 digs per game this year... second on the team with 0.23 service aces per game... had her best career match vs. Cal (10/11), nearly tabbing a triple-double with 14 kills and career highs in digs (18) and blocks (8)... recorded career-high 16 kills and added 10 digs for fourth career double-double in win over Washington (10/3)... notched double-double with 11 kills and 17 digs vs. UCLA (9/21)... the 17 digs matched her previous career high... matched her previous career high in kills with 13 vs. Clemson (9/14)... recorded nine kills in season opener vs. South Carolina (9/6). Career Notes: Named honorable mention freshman All-Pac-10 in 2001... ranked sixth on the team in 2001 by averaging 1.64 kills per game and third with 0.65 blocks per game... averaging 1.80 kpg and 2.12 dpg in her 36 career matches as a Sun Devil.
#3 Juliana Escobar (5-11, Jr., OH, Sobradinhio DF, Brazil) --
Has started all 12 matches at outside hitter... has recorded a double-double (kills/digs) in eight of ASU's 12 matches this year... also has 20 or more kills in seven matches... leads the team and is ranked fourth in the Pac-10 with 4.17 kpg average... eighth in the league with 3.15 digs per game... leads the team in kills, digs and service aces (0.65)... second in the Pac-10 with 0.65 service aces per game, already passing the team leader (Jami Coughlin) from last year with 31... had 20 kills and 16 digs to help lead ASU to 3-0 win over Arizona (9/27)... set career high with 18 digs in win over Washington (10/3)... became ASU's 14th player to ever earn Pac-10 Player of the Week (9/30) by recording 20 kills and 16 digs vs. Arizona (9/27)... had 23 kills and 13 digs in win over #11 UCLA (9/21)... had 21 kills and 18 digs in her first match as a Sun Devil (South Carolina; 9/6)... her 25 kills vs. No. 13 Pacific are the most by a Sun Devil since the NCAA adopted the new rally scoring system last year... had 15 service aces in three matches at Carolina Classic, including six vs. Creighton (9/7)... the six aces are tied for the seventh most in ASU single-match history... named to the all-tournament team at the Carolina Classic and Red Raider Classic. Career Notes: Came to ASU from Barton County CC (Great Bend, Kan.) where she was the 2001 AVCA/NJCAA Player of the Year... averaged 6.17 kpg, 1.11 service aces per game and 2.29 dpg over her two years at the junior college level... played with Sun Devil teammate Fernanda Habiger at Barton County CC.
#4 Natalie Harris (5-11, RS-So., OH, Tempe, Ariz.) --
Has seen action 11 of ASU's 12 matches this year, including three starts... averaging 1.60 kpg and 1.95 dpg... recorded season-high nine kills in victory over Creighton (9/7) and also had nine in loss to Washington State (10/4)... notched seventh and eighth career 10+ dig matches vs. Arizona (9/27) and Washington (10/3)... best match this year was a nine-kill, nine-dig effort off the bench vs. UCLA (9/21). Career Notes: Coming off shoulder surgery and a redshirt season in 2001... averaging 1.29 kpg and 1.77 dpg in 39 career matches (98 games) as a Sun Devil.
#5 Julia Leddy (6-2, Sr., MB, Mesa, Ariz.) --
Has started all 12 matches this year at middle blocker... named tournament MVP at Red Raider Classic after averaging 2.90 kills in the two matches... second on the team with 2.90 kpg and leads ASU with 0.85 blocks per game... recorded 15 kills and was one off of her career high with eight blocks in win over Cal. (10/11)... her four solo blocks vs. Washington (10/3) is the best in the Pac-10 and is tied for third with her eight blocks assists vs. Cal (10/11)... has 10 or more kills in eight of ASU's 12 matches, including season-high 18 vs. Clemson (9/14)... leads the team and ranks seventh in the Pac-10 in hitting percentage at .350... had six blocks vs. UCLA (9/21) and Washington (10/3)... also contributed match-high five blocks vs. Arizona (9/27)... had 14 kills in back-to-back matches vs. South Carolina and #13 Pacific... named to all-tournament team at Carolina Classic. Career Notes: Ranked third on the team in 2001 by averaging 2.84 kills per game and led ASU with a .352 hitting percentage, notching the second-highest single-season hitting percentage in school history... had career-high 23 kills vs. Washington (10/12/01)... named tournament MVP of Loyola Marymount Volleyball Challenge during junior year... recorded double-digits in kills in 14 of ASU's 26 matches last year... has recorded 40 career matches with 10 or more kills and boasts a.334 hitting percentage in 85 career matches... two-time Pac-10 All-Academic selection.
#7 Kim Mehlhorn (5-11, Jr., OH, Tempe, Ariz.) --
Has started eight of the 12 matches this year and seen action in 32 of ASU's 48 games... has been battling a severe case of migraine headaches as of late... averaging 1.81 kills per game and 1.56 dpg this year... notched consecutive double-doubles at the Red Raider Classic vs. Clemson and Texas Tech... named to all-tournament team at Red Raider Classic... had season-high 15 kills vs. Clemson (9/14)... has recorded double-digits in kills in three matches this year. Career Notes: Recorded 19 matches with 10 or more kills last year, including a string of 14 of the last 15 matches to end the season... ranked eighth in the Pac-10 as a sophomore with 3.83 kills per game in league matches only... averaged 3.88 kills per game over the final 15 matches of 2001... has 16 career double-doubles (most among active Sun Devil hitters) and is averaging 2.33 kpg and 2.13 dpg in her 66 matches as a Sun Devil.
#8 Courtney Blocher (5-7, Jr, LI/OH, Scottsdale, Ariz.) --
Has started all 12 matches this year, with 11 coming at libero and one (Cal; 10/11) at outside hitter... second on the team with 2.92 digs per game... recorded her sixth career 20+ dig match with season-high 23 vs. Washington (10/3)... also had 20 digs vs. then No. 11 UCLA (9/21)... had 16 digs in five-game win over No. 13 Pacific (9/7)... also had 16 digs vs. Clemson (9/14)... has recorded 10 or more digs in seven of ASU's 12 matches... saw action as outside hitter in fifth game vs. Washington (10/3) and started in her last match vs. Cal (3 kills). Career Notes: Started all 26 matches and played in every game in 2001... recorded four matches with 20+ digs... averaged 3.09 digs per game, second-best on team and ranked fifth in the Pac-10... one of ASU's four sophomores from Chandler's Valley Christian High School... 1999 Arizona Gatorade State Player of the Year... averaging 2.83 digs per game (734 total) and has 39 career matches with 10 or more digs in her 68 matches as a Sun Devil... her 734 digs are eighth most among active Pac-10 players.
#10 Cheryl Anglin (5-9, Jr., S, Queen Creek, Ariz.) --
ASU's starting setter in all 12 matches this year... will play mainly as a back-row setter with Fernanda Habiger rotating into the lineup as of late... averaging 9.30 assists per game this year, seventh best in the Pac-10... recorded a season-high 67 vs. Clemson (9/14), ranking as the fourth-best assist performance in the Pac-10 this year... moved into second place in ASU career record books for assists (2,994) past former Sun Devil (1989-92) Jennifer Helfrich. Career Notes: Has the most career assists among active Pac-10 setters with 2,994... school single-season record and freshman record holder for assists when she had 1,452 as a freshman in 2000... has recorded 37 career matches with 40 or more assists and 23 matches with 50 or more assists in her career... averaging 11.74 assists per game in 68 career matches (255 games) as a Sun Devil.
#11 Jodi Smith (6-1, RS-Jr., MB, St. Johns, Ariz.) --
Has started 11 matches this year at middle blocker... has 10 or more kills in six of ASU's 12 matches... had career-high eight blocks in five-game win over Cal (10/11)... her three solo blocks in that match rank as the third-best performance in the Pac-10... averaging 2.35 kpg to rank third on the team and is second in hitting percentage (behind Julia Leddy) at .296... had career-high three service aces vs. Pacific (9/7)... had 14 kills and hit .370 in win over No. 13 Pacific (9/7)... had 12 kills in four consecutive matches (9/20-10/3). Career Notes: ASU's only two sport female athlete... also a high jumper on the ASU track & field team... tied for third in last year's Pac-10 meet with a jump of 5 ft, 7.25 inches... led the team with 0.86 blocks per game last year and ranked fifth with a 2.27 kill/game average... is averaging 2.25 kpg and is a career .275 hitter in 42 matches as a Sun Devil.
#12 Fernanda Habiger (5-11, Sr., S, Cruzeira, Brazil) --
Has seen action in all 12 matches this year and is contending for more playing time... has been ASU's sparkplug off the bench in wins over Texas Tech (9/15), UCLA (9/21) and Arizona (9/27)... averaging .72 blocks per game over her last eight matches... had a career-high 4.0 blocks vs. UCLA (9/21) and vs. Washington (10/3)... notched a career-high seven kills vs. Washington... averaging 3.81 assists per game, including a career-high 30 in five-game victory over Texas Tech (9/15). Career Notes: Finished her first year as a Sun Devil (2001) with 0.39 kpg, 2.15 assists/game and 0.39 dpg... transferred from Barton County CC in Great Bend, Kansas... one of two ASU players who are native to Brazil... was the JC teammate of Juliana Escobar... one of three players on this years team that is married (Smith, Arnett).
#13 Brittany Arnett (5-7, Sr., DS, Mesa, Ariz.) --
One of three seniors on this years team... will be used as a defensive specialist and backup libero this year... averaging 1.90 dpg in 20 games (eight matches) this year... had season and career high 17 digs in five-game victory over California (10/11)... finished second on the team with 23 service aces last year... one of three players who are married (Smith, Habiger).
#14 Sarah Watkins (5-11, Fr., OH/S, Mishawaka, Ind.) --
One of two true freshmen on this year's squad... played in all three games vs. Creighton (9/7), recording one dig and one service ace... came off the bench in win vs. California (10/11) to record six kills while hitting .308... a four-time all-conference selection in high school... named state MVP her senior year.
#15 Nora Pirzynski (5-6, Fr., DS/LI, Manhattan Beach, Calif.) --
One of two true freshmen on this year's squad... has seen action in four of ASU's five matches this year... had one kills and two digs in ASU debut vs. South Carolina (9/6)... season-high six digs vs. Clemson (9/14)... averaging 1.00 digs per this year... attended Mira Costa High School where she lettered three years in varsity volleyball... first-team all-CIF as a senior and helped lead Mira Costa to back-to-back CIF championships.
Anglin Moves Into Second In ASU Record Books:
Junior Cheryl Anglin (Queen Creek, Ariz.) moved into second place in the ASU career record books during ASU's loss to defending national champion Stanford. With 56 assists last weekend, Anglin moved past former Sun Devil Jennifer Helfrich (1989-92) into second place in the ASU career record books with 2,994 assists. As a freshman she set the school record with 1,452 assists and as a sophomore (2001) she recorded nine matches with 50 or more assists and four 60+ assist matches. She ended the season on a high note, recording 40 or more assists in eight of the last 14 matches. Anglin arrived at ASU in 2000 and took the freshmen record book by assault. She broke the freshman record for assists in a season vs. Stanford (10/27/00) midway through the year and continued on to break the overall school record with 1,452. Anglin passed Regina Stahl, who recorded 1,062 in her freshman year of 1984, to set the freshman record. In her first collegiate start, she wasted little leaving her name in the ASU record books. The Chandler Valley Christian product recorded 77 assists vs. Cal Poly (9/1/00) to rank fourth (at the time and now fifth) all-time in single-match history at ASU. Anglin recorded the second-best assist performance in school history with 84 vs. Washington State (10/20/00). For her career, Anglin has recorded 37 matches with 40 or more assists.
Since the Pac-10 added women's volleyball, the Arizona State Sun Devils have been a defensive powerhouse. Always a trademark of Patti Snyder-Park's system, who herself was an outstanding defensive specialist at Portland State and in professional volleyball, ASU has led the conference in total digs four times during her tenure (1989-P) and digs per game four times as well. In the 16 years of Pac-10 Volleyball, an Arizona State individual has led the conference in digs per game four times. Jami Coughlin led the league in digs twice during her career, in 2001 with a 3.98 average and in 1998 with a 3.62 digs per game average. Current assistant coach Terri Cox led the league in her junior and senior years (1996-97) with a 4.90 and 3.54 per game average respectively. The Devils currently rank sixth in the Pac-10 with a 14.88 dpg average, with Juliana Escobar and Courtney Blocher ranking each in the top 15 in the league with 3.15 and 2.92 dpg respectively.
ASU Volleyball has a legacy of academic success in the programs 30-year history. Amanda Burbridge and Jami Coughlin were both named Verizon District VIII Academic All-Americans in 2000 with their outstanding performances in the classroom. Coughlin, who graduated with a perfect 4.0 in Education, was a two-time first-team Academic All-American in the University division. ASU now has 26 Academic All-Conference selections since 1986, the second most in the Pac-10 behind Stanford's 27. Coughlin and Julia Leddy were both named to the Pac-10 All-Academic team in 2001.
More Rule Changes:
The libero (pronounced 'LEE-bah-ro) is a designated backrow player, intended to be used as a ball-control specialist. The libero is allowed to replace any player in the backrow without counting as a substitution and there is no limit to the number of libero replacements a team is allowed. The color of the libero's uniform must contrast from the color of her teammates' uniforms, but the libero's shorts must be the same as her teammates'. The libero plays only in the backrow but may not serve, block or attempt to block. The addition of the libero comes one year after the NCAA adapted the new rally scoring system with games now played to 30.
For You Stat Rats:
The 2001 season had many changes, including the change to rally scoring and also the introduction of a new category of stats. Now every kill, block and ace will not only earn a team a point, but the responsible player gets a point as well (just as a basketball player contributes 20 points in a game). The formula is as follows: points = kills + service aces + solo blocks + 1/2 block assists. For example, Juliana Escobar leads the team this year with 242.0 points (200 kills, 31 service aces, 7 block solos and 8 block assists).
Gatorade State Players of the Year Common at ASU:
Gatorade really is thirst aid for Arizona State University recruits coming out of high school. Several Gatorade Arizona State Players of the Year have gone on to attend ASU. Laura Hibsman (1995), Amanda Burbridge (1997), Jami Coughlin (1998) and Courtney Blocher (1999) have all won the prestigious award as the state's best prep volleyball player.
This is ASU Volleyball:
The ASU Volleyball program is rich in tradition with 12 appearances in the NCAA tournament. The Sun Devils advanced five years in a row in the mid '80s under head coach Debbie Brown, and have made five appearances under current head coach Patti Snyder-Park. The program has an overall 502-350 (.589%) record in 30 years of competition. The program has produced eight players with 1,000 digs and 1,000 kills in a career.
Head Coach Patti Snyder-Park:
Head Coach Patti Snyder-Park begins her 14th and final year at the helm of the ASU volleyball program. Snyder-Park has led ASU to six NCAA appearances in the last 10 years and has posted a winning record in seven of her last 11 seasons. She has posted a career 209-173 (.547) record as a Sun Devil, which ranks first in ASU history. Last year she became the fifth coach in Pac-10 history to surpass the 100-win mark in league play. Her overall Pac-10 record is 110-131 (.456). A graduate of Portland State University, Snyder-Park is assisted by two of her former players, Christine Garner and Terri Cox. Snyder-Park is married to husband John and has three kids; daughters Sydney and Sophia Rae and son Samuel.
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