Quality matches on the horizon for Pac-12 women's volleyball
Pac-12 play got off to a hot start with the rivalry matches. Five of the six rivalry matches went to at least four sets, with WASHINGTON and WASHINGTON STATE going the full five. Some of the best matches in the country this week will be Pac-12 matches. The Pac-12 Networks’ Volleyball Game of the Week on Wednesday is a top-15 clash between No. 8 STANFORD and No. 14 ARIZONA. On Friday, No. 6 ARIZONA STATE hosts the Cardinal to kick off a full night of matches on the Conference’s Network. It will be the first time since 1986 the Sun Devils are ranked higher than the Cardinal at the time of the meeting. Later that night, No. 11 UCLA hosts No. 5 WASHINGTON, setting up a top-five matchup between the Huskies and No. 2 USC for the last match of the week on Sunday. If the Huskies and Trojans are successful on Friday against UCLA and WASHINGTON STATE, respectively, Sunday’s match will pit two of the nation’s three remaining undefeated squads.
CONFERENCE STANDINGS (Expanded standings)
|Teams||Pct.||Pac-12 Record||Overall Record|
UPCOMING SCHEDULE (All Times Local To Site)
|Wednesday, Sept. 30||TV/Live Stream||Time|
|#8 STANFORD at #14 ARIZONA||PAC12||7:30 p.m. PT|
|Friday, Oct. 2|
|#8 STANFORD at #6 ARIZONA STATE||PAC12/PACAZ/PACBA||6 p.m. PT|
|UTAH at OREGON STATE||PACMT/PACOR||6 p.m. PT|
|WASHINGTON STATE at #2 USC||7 p.m. PT|
|CALIFORNIA at #14 ARIZONA||PACAZ/PACBA||8 p.m. PT|
|#5 WASHINGTON at #11 UCLA||PAC12/PACLA||8 p.m. PT|
|COLORADO at #22 OREGON||PACMT/PACOR||8 p.m. PT|
|Saturday, Oct. 3|
|UTAH at #22 OREGON||Live Stream||5 p.m. PT|
|Sunday, Oct. 4|
|WASHINGTON STATE at #11 UCLA||Live Stream||11 a.m. PT|
|COLORADO at OREGON STATE||PACMT/PACOR||11 a.m. PT|
|#5 WASHINGTON at #2 USC||PAC12/PACWA/PACLA||1 p.m. PT|
|CALIFORNIA at #6 ARIZONA STATE||PACAZ/PACBA||1:30 p.m. PT|
PAC12/PACAZ/PACBA/PACLA/PACMT/PACOR/PACWA - Indicates live broadcast on Pac-12 Networks.
• Seven Pac-12 teams are ranked in the top-25 of the AVCA Coaches Poll for the sixth-straight week, six are in the top 15. USC, WASHINGTON and ARIZONA STATE each moved up one spot to No. 2, No. 5 and No. 6, respectively. The Trojans also received one first-place vote. UCLA is up two spots this week to No. 11. No. 8 STANFORD and No. 14 ARIZONA stayed put this week, while OREGON fell four spots to No. 22.
The Pac-12 head a league-record nine teams earn preseason top-25 rating this season. USC started the season at No. 22 and quickly moved up to the top three.
•ARIZONA STATE, USC and WASHINGTON are three of five of the remaining undefeated teams in the country.
• The Huskies have limited opponents to a paltry .107 hitting percentage, the best in the nation. ASU is second in the category with a .108 opponent hitting.
• Five Pac-12 teams are in the top 20 in the country in blocks per set: 5. ASU (3.09); 7. Stanford (3.03); 9. Washington (2.97); 12. Washington State (2.88); and 20. USC (2.78).
• USC’s Samantha Bricio leads the country in aces per set (0.85) and points per set (6.22).
• The Pac-12 has four players ranked in the top 25 in the nation in blocks per set and kills per set. USC’s Alicia Ogoms is second in the nation with a 1.72 blocks average, while UW’s Melanie Wade is 11th (1.49), Stanford’s Ivana Vanjak is 14th (1.47) and ASU’s Whitney Follette is 16th (1.44). Bricio leads the Pac-12 and ranks fourth in the NCAA with a 4.96 kills per set average, followed by UCLA’s Jordan Anderson (10th, 4.67), ARIZONA’s Kalei Mau (13th, 453) and WASHINGTON STATE’s Kyra Holt (23rd, 4.35).
For a complete list of NCAA stats team and individual leaders visit this link: http://stats.ncaa.org/rankings/ranking_summary
PLAYERS OF THE WEEK
• USC’s Samantha Bricio was voted the Pac-12 Offensive Player of the Week for the fourth time in five weeks of the season. Teammate Alicia Ogoms was voted the Defensive Player of the Week and the Freshman of the Week is Lindsey Vander Weide, who earns the honor for the second time this year. For the full release, click here.
AROUND THE LEAGUE
With the 3-0 victory over Oregon, Arizona has now won four-straight Pac-12 home debuts … After victories over Arizona and Oregon State,ASU moved to 2-0 in Pac-12 play for the first time since 1999… California is in the midst of a the Conference slate with five-straight matches against ranked opponents … Colorado's sophomore Cierra Simpson became a member of the 1,000-dig club earlier this season. She's 10th in the league in digs per set at 3.27 … Oregon's Lindsey Vander Weide joins Frankie Shebby (2014) and Liz Brenner (2011) as the three Oregon freshmen to receive Pac-12 Freshman of the Week honor twice in one season since its inception in 2011 … Oregon State's Mary-Kate Marshall, a 2014 AVCA All-American, is currently seventh in the Conference with 3.81 kills per set … Stanford suffered its first home loss in 27 matches, a home-winning streak spanning nearly two years, when they fell to the third-ranked USC Trojans in a five-set thriller at Maples Pavilion on Sept. 27 … UCLA is currently second in the conference in digs per set at 15.51, a key component to its 10-2 start … At 14-0, USC had 11 sweeps during the non-conference season and only lost four sets total … With its 3-1 victory over Colorado, Utah has now won two-straight and four of the last six matches against Colorado … Washington has dropped only three total sets on the year and sits at 12-0 overall … After tallying 15 blocks in the match against Utah on Sept. 26, Washington State is fourth in the league in blocks per set at 2.88, a major factor in its 12-2 start.
• Three Pac-12 teams remain undefeated after two weekends of action while 10 teams have a record of .500 or better due, in part, to the strength of the league’s defense. Nine Conference teams are limiting opponents to a .178 or worse hitting percentage. That would’ve ranked all nine teams in the top 66 in the country in the NCAA last year out of 328 teams. ARIZONA STATE has been the most unrelenting, boasting a minuscule .076 opponent hitting average, which would have ranked No. 1 in the country, by far, last year.
• Pac-12 teams have defeated nine ranked non-conference teams so far this season with USC accounting for three of those wins. The Trojans’ three wins were to teams ranked in the top 11 at the time of the meeting, two of which came in the opening weekend. UCLA traveled to then-No. 17 Hawai’i over the weekend and took down the UH in front of a crowd of over 8,600 fans. ARIZONA STATE, COLORADO and STANFORD have also notched wins over top-10 foes.
• Pac-12 teams went 97-31 (.758) in the non-conference, including going 27-7 in the opening weekend. In the opening weekend, 17 of the 27 wins came in three-set sweeps. Since 2002, league teams have dominated the first weekend of play, going 332-81 (.804).
• Three Pac-12 teams remain undefeated after the conclusion of the non-conference portion of the schedule and 11 teams have a record of .500 or better due, in part, to the strength of the league’s defense. Four Conference teams are ranked in the top 12 in the nation in opponent hitting percentage, as ARIZONA STATE, WASHINGTON, WASHINGTON STATE and ARIZONA limiting opponents to under .142 hitting. Four league squads are also in the top 15 in the country in blocks per set, with STANFORD ranking second in the country at 3.19. Four Pac-12 teams also rank in the top 15 in kills per set, including the Huskies (7th) and the Wildcats (13th).
• The Pac-12 is coming off another historic season which saw an unprecedented 10 teams earn NCAA Tournament bids and went a perfect 10-0 in the first round of the postseason.
• Last year, 14 players were named AVCA All-Americans and eight return for 2015 including senior standouts such as Stanford’s Madi Bugg and Jordan Burgess, USC’s Samantha Bricio, UO’s Martenne Bettendorf, ASU’s Macey Gardner and UW’s Lianna Sybeldon. Sophomores Merete Lutz of Stanford and Mary-Kate Marshall of OSU also return to help lead their respective teams this season.
• One new coach will be roaming the Pac-12 sidelines after WASHINGTON announced the hiring of Keegan Cook, who replaced former UW coach Jim McLaughlin. However, Cook may look familiar to some as he served as an assistant coach under McLaughlin the last two years, helping the Huskies advance to the NCAA semifinal in 2013. Also in coaching news, UTAH head coach Beth Launiere needs just seven more victories for career No. 500. She has spent all 25 years of her career in Salt Lake City.
• FAB Freshman ... Pac-12 volleyball continues to recruit marquee student-athletes. Seven Pac-12 teams landed at least one Volleyball Magazine FAB 50 recruit with OREGON pacing the Conference with four. STANFORD signed the nation’s top recruit according to the publication in Hayley Hodson.
• Once again, the Pac-12 will have the most comprehensive volleyball television coverage of any league in the country. 95 total matches will be broadcast live, with 92 being televised on the Conference's Pac-12 Network. Another three more were selected to be televised on ESPNU. For the full television schedule, visit pac-12.com.
Pac-12 students are known for their success on the field, but they are also impressive, complete people with outside interests, diverse backgrounds, extracurricular activities, interesting families, busy schedules, and full lives. Our school’s releases for this week’s games will focus on who Pac-12 students are off the field of play.
Below are just a few highlights of the students from around the Conference:
• CALIFORNIA: Mary McKennon, a junior defensive specialist, is a student in the prestigious Haas School of Business. She had a summer internship at UBS Investment Bank in New York City. Her two-month internship exposed her to sales and trading in the areas of International Cash Equities, Foreign Exchange rates and Transbrokerage Account Management, among them.
• UCLA: The Bruins take part in numerous community service events, including visiting the Mattel Children’s Hospital and participating in the recent Prime Time Games, which is a full-inclusion peer-mentor sports program in which economically disadvantaged and underserved middle school students from the Team Prime Time after-school program coach and play alongside children with developmental disabilities in the only program of its kind in the country.
PAC-12 PLAYERS OF THE WEEK
Offensive - Samantha Bricio, USC
Defensive - Alicia Ogoms, USC
Freshman - Lindsey Vander Weide, Washington
Offensive: Kalei Mau, ARIZ; Macey Gardner, ASU; Alexis Austin, COLO; Lindsey Vander Weide, ORE; Mary-Kate Marshall, OSU; Brittany Howard, STAN; Jordan Anderson, UCLA; Courtney Schwan, WASH; Taylor Sims, WSU.
Defensive: Laura Larson, ARIZ; Halle Harker, ASU; Anna Pfefferle, COLO; Amanda Benson, ORE; Haley Clarker, OSU; Merete Lutz, STAN; Jeannie Frager, UCLA; Adora Anae, UTAH; Lianna Sybeldon, WASH; Taylor Mims, WSU.
Freshman: Tyler Spriggs, ARIZ; Kayla Ellis, OSU; Hayley Hodson, STAN; Alyse Ford, USC; Taylor Mims, WSU.
2015 PAC-12 WOMEN'S VOLLEYBALL PLAYERS OF THE WEEK
IN THE PRESEASON
o The Pac-12 has captured six of the last 14 NCAA crowns (2011 - UCLA, 2005 - Washington, 2004 - Stanford, 2003 - USC, 2002 - USC, 2001 - Stanford) and 14 NCAA titles overall.
o The Pac-12 has had 10 or more All-Americans selections in eight of the last 10 years. Last year, 11 were named to the AVCA All-America squad, the most since 13 were selected in 2009. Ten former Pac-12 players have earned All-America honors four times, while another 18 players in all have earned All-American honors three times.
o Since 1990, Pac-12 players garnered AVCA Player of the Year honors 13 times, including the last four of the last five years - CAL's Carli Lloyd (2010), USC's Alex Jupiter (2011), ORE's Alaina Bergsma (2012) and WASH's Krista Vansant (2013). The NCAA Honda Sports Award honor has been bestowed upon a Pac-12 volleyball player 13 times, including Vansant in 2013.
o The current group of Pac-12 volleyball coaches enters the 2015 season with nearly 5,000 Division I victories to its credit, having compiled 4,822 wins in a combined 219 years of head coaching experience. That averages out to nearly 23 wins a season for each coach per season. In addition, these coaches have guided NCAA Division I teams to 38 NCAA semifinal appearances and eight NCAA titles. In the last 13 years, seven different coaches have been named the ASICS/Volleyball Magazine Coach of the Year and/or the AVCA Coach of the Year - Arizona's David Rubio (2001 ASICS), California's Rich Feller (2007 ASICS, 2010 ASICS and AVCA), Stanford's John Dunning (2001 AVCA), UCLA's Mike Sealy (2011 AVCA), USC's Mick Haley (2003 AVCA), Washington's Jim McLaughlin (2004 ASICS and AVCA), and UCLA's Andy Banachowski (2006 ASICS and AVCA).
- Arizona Women's Volleyball
- Arizona State Women's Volleyball
- California Women's Volleyball
- Colorado Women's Volleyball
- Oregon Women's Volleyball
- Oregon State Women's Volleyball
- Stanford Women's Volleyball
- UCLA Women's Volleyball
- USC Women's Volleyball
- Utah Women's Volleyball
- Washington Women's Volleyball
- Washington State Women's Volleyball
- Arizona State
- Oregon State
- Washington State
- Women's Volleyball
- Pac-12 Conference
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