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Volleyball Set to Host Cougar Challenge

Sep 8, 2021

vs. LBSU (3-3, 0-0 Big West)   |    Thursday, Sept. 9   |   6:00 p.m. PT
vs. UNI (2-4, 0-0 MVC)             |    Friday, Sept. 10      |   12:30 p.m. PT
vs. Gonzaga (3-3, 0-0 WCC)    |    Friday, Sept. 10      |   8:00 p.m. PT

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> Watch (All Matches)          |      WSU Live Stream
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Washington State looks ahead to the annual Cougar Challenge this weekend, as the Cougs will welcome Long Beach State, Northern Iowa and Gonzaga to Pullman and Bohler Gym. WSU will face LBSU in the Cougars' first match of the tournament, with first serve set for Thursday at 6 p.m. All-time LBSU and WSU have met four times, with the last occurring in 2016, where the Cougs swept the The Beach 3-0. The match between Northern Iowa and Gonzaga will take place prior inside Bohler Gym at 4 p.m. as well.

The Cougars will then take on UNI Friday at 12:30 p.m. and conclude the Challenge with an evening contest against Gonzaga at 8 p.m. The Cougs and Northern Iowa all-time series is currently tied up at 4-4 overall, with these two squads last meeting back in 2018 where WSU defeated the Panthers twice, both matches ending 3-1. Washington State is 34-10 all-time against the Bulldogs, with the last meeting occurring in 2010 with the Cougs wining 3-1.

Leading WSU after the two matches at the Rebel Challenge was Magda Jehlářová who totaled a team-high 17 combined kills while hitting .516 overall. Magda also led the Cougars in kills per set at 2.43, and in blocks with seven total (one block solo, six block assists). Freshman Katy Ryan played a crucial part of the defensively effort over the weekend as well, totaling seven overall blocks herself.

Hannah Pukis continues to rack up the assists for the Cougs, as she finished the Carolina Classic with 63 total in two matches. Pukis sees her career total up to 1,839 now and she is certainly on pace to crack the Washington State top ten in all-time assists. Currently sitting at No. 10 for WSU all-time is Renee Bordelon (2008-09) with 2,093 total assists.

Washington State is one of only 17 programs (14 from Power 5 Schools) in the nation, out of 334 total schools, to qualify for the NCAA Championship Tournament in 5 consecutive seasons (2016-20). - Others included are: Baylor, BYU, Creighton, Florida, Kentucky, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, Penn State, Pittsburgh, Purdue, San Diego, Texas, Utah, Washington, and Wisconsin WSU has finished in the Top 5 in the Pac-12 standings, four out of the last five years.

WSU Volleyball was tabbed fifth in the Pac-12 Preseason Coaches Poll, which is also an all-time high for conference preseason rankings for the Cougs. Washington State also saw another program high, as three student-athletes were selected to the All-Pac-12 Preseason Team, the most in WSU history. Those individuals were Hannah PukisMagda Jehlářová, and Pia Timmer.

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