Oct. 30, 2013
EVANSTON, Ill. -- Northwestern continues its three-match road trip this weekend as it opens the second half of the Big Ten slate against a pair of fierce foes. The Wildcats will visit the Iowa Hawkeyes Friday for the first time since Oct. 22, 2011 before continuing on to Lincoln, Neb. for their first match in the new home of the Nebraska Cornhuskers, the Devaney Sports Center, Saturday evening.
Straight to the Top
Outside hitter Stephanie Holthus is continuing her rapid ascent to the top of the list in several all-time NU record categories. After opening the season 10th on the all-time list in kills, Holthus surpassed Erika Lange (2000-'03) against Illinois on Oct. 23 and now sits all alone in second place with 1,640 kills. She needs only 26 kills to catch Janine Makar (1985-'88), who is currently the program's all-time leader. During Sunday's contest against No. 7 Minnesota, the Burlington, Ill., native also moved into a tie for eighth place with Kathy Burns (1984-'87) with 1,237 career digs. Entering this week, Holthus ranks first all-time, just ahead of Lange, with 3.74 kills per set in her career.
|Inside Northwestern Volleyball|
Northwestern enjoyed its best Big Ten road trip since 2009 on Oct. 11-12. The 'Cats knocked off both Indiana and No. 20 Purdue in five sets to complete their first 2-0 weekend in Big Ten play on the road since October 30-31, 2009. Ironically, those two wins were also against Purdue (3-2 on 10/30) and Indiana (3-1 on 10/31). Furthermore it was the first time since November 26-27, 2004 that the Wildcats won a pair of five-set matches during a Big Ten trip. Of course, those victories came against Indiana (11/26) and Purdue (11/27).
The Wildcats are facing another challenging schedule in 2013, both in and out of conference play. Nine teams on NU's schedule are ranked in this week's AVCA top 25 coaches poll. Two more squads, Ohio State and Illinois, received votes in the latest edition of the poll that was released on Monday. Northwestern will play a total of 19 matches against teams either in the top 25 or receiving votes with 10 complete thus far (Oklahoma, Hawai'i, Nebraska, Michigan, Michigan State, Purdue, Ohio State, Penn State, Illinois and Minnesota). Northwestern has received votes in the AVCA top 25 coaches poll in each of the last two weeks. The Wildcats check in at No. 46 in the latest RPI that was released on Oct. 28.
2013 Record: 10-12, 1-9 Big Ten
Series History: Northwestern leads, 39-26-1
Last NU win: Sept. 28, 2013 at Welsh-Ryan Arena (3-0)
Last IOWA win: Oct. 23, 2009 at Carver-Hawkeye Arena (3-0)
Head Coach: Sharon Dingman (Northern Michigan, '84)
Top Performers: Alex Lovell, Jr. OH (3.58 kps, 2.33 dps); Bethany Yeager, Sr. L (4.17 dps, 0.83 aps); Alessandra Dietz, Jr. MB (.305 atk%, 0.88 bps, 2.13 kps).
Notable: The Hawkeyes are one of only six programs nationwide to boast a Taraflex Sport M Plus floor, which it began using at Carver-Hawkeye Arena earlier this fall. The court has been the surface of choice for Olympic play dating back to 1976.
2013 Record: 15-4, 8-2 Big Ten, ranked No. 11 in this week's AVCA top 25 coaches poll
Series History: Nebraska leads, 6-1
Last NU win: Nov. 26, 2011 at Welsh-Ryan Arena (3-1)
Last NEB win: Sept. 27, 2013 at Welsh-Ryan Arena (3-1)
Head Coach: John Cook (San Diego, '79)
Top Performers: Kelsey Robinson, Sr. OH (4.47 kps, .329 atk%, 3.49 dps); Kadie Rolfzen, Fr. OH (3.33 kps, 2.18 dps, 0.50 bps); Mary Pollmiller, Sr. S (10.47 aps, 1.83 dps, 0.86 kps).
Notable: Two senior transfers from Tennessee have made an immediate impact as they've been key cogs for the Huskers this fall. Outside hitter Kelsey Robinson is one of the most prolific scorers in the Big Ten with 5.03 points per set. Setter Mary Pollmiller leads the conference in league matches only with 11.13 assists per set, just above Northwestern's freshman sensation Caleigh Ryan.
To view the complete notes package, please download the PDF at the top of the page.
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