Oct. 18 - Bohler Gym - Pullman, Wash. -Pac-12 Networks
Oct. 20 - Alaska Airlines Arena - Seattle, Wash. - Pac-12 Networks
THIS WEEK: The seventh-ranked Stanford women’s volleyball team (12-3, 5-1 Pac-12) travels to the Pacific Northwest this weekend to take on Pac-12 foes Washington State (15-4, 2-4 Pac-12) and Washington (13-1, 5-1 Pac-12). The Cardinal will face the Cougars on Friday, Oct. 18 at 6 p.m. in Pullman before facing the sixth-ranked Huskies on Sunday, Oct. 20 at 4:30 p.m. in Seattle.
SCOUTING WASHINGTON STATE: The Cougars enter the week with a 2-4 mark in the Pac-12, including five-set wins at Oregon State and over then-No. 16 Arizona State. Washington State ranks third in the conference in oppoenent hitting percentage (.153) and service aces (1.30). Freshman outside hitter Kyra Holt leads the team and ranks fifth in the Pac-12 with 4.11 kills per set. She is also fourth in the conference with 4.83 points per set and fifth with 0.38 aces per set. Senior setter Camryn Irwin is sixth in the Pac-12 with 10.07 assists per set and ranks eighth with 0.34 aces per set. Senior middle hitter Marcelina Glab adds 1.68 kills and 1.10 blocks per set.
THE SERIES WITH THE COUGARS: Stanford holds a 52-3 overall record against Washington State. The Cardinal swept the season series last year, pulling out a five-set victory in Pullman and sweeping the Cougars at home. WSU most recent win against Stanford came on Nov. 16, 2002 in Pullman.
SCOUTING WASHINGTON: Washington enters the week with just one blemish on its resume, a four-set loss to unranked Colorado. The Huskies lead the Pac-12 with 1.96 aces per set and rank second with a .300 hitting percentage. Junior outside hitter Krista Vansant is sixth in the Pac-12 with 4.58 points per set and seventh with 3.85 kills per set to lead the Huskies. Sophomore middle blocker Melanie Wade ranks fifth in the Pac-12 with a .393 hitting percentage, while sophomore middle blocker Lianna Sybeldon is fourth in the conference with 1.28 blocks per set and nineth with a .365 hitting percentage. Senior libero Jenna Orlandini leads the Washington defense with 4.06 digs per set.
THE SERIES WITH THE HUSKIES: The Cardinal holds a 49-11 edge in the all-time series against the Huskies. Last season, Stanford won a five-set thriller in Seattle in which the Cardinal lost both the first and third sets 25-10. However, Stanford posted a 15-7 win in the fifth to hand Washington its first home loss of the season. The Cardinal’s other win over the Huskies in 2012 came in four sets in Maples Pavilion.
CATCH THE CARDINAL: Fans can catch both matches live on the Pac-12 Network. KZSU radio will also be broadcasting both matches at 90.1 FM or online at http://kzsu.stanford.edu/. Live stats for the match will be accessible on GoStanford.com.
LOOKING AHEAD: The Cardinal will begin a four-match homestand next week, starting with No. 21 Oregon on Oct. 23 and Oregon State on Oct. 25 in Maples Pavilion. Stanford will then host top-ranked USC on Oct. 30 and UCLA on Nov. 1.
SOCIAL NETWORKING: Fans will have access to unique behind-the-scenes content on the team this season by liking Stanford Women’s Volleyball on Facebook or following the team on Twitter and Instagram (@StanfordWVB). Instagram will house the Cardinal’s off the court photos and videos all season long.
LAST WEEK: Stanford got back on track last week, sweeping Utah and Colorado in Maples Pavilion. Ten of the Cardinal’s 12 wins this season have been sweeps. Senior middle blocker Carly Wopat was named the Pac-12 Offensive Player of the Week after hitting .529 in the two matches (20-1-34). Junior libero Kyle Gilbert led the defense with 5.83 digs per set, including a match-high 19 against Utah.
RETURNING ALL-AMERICANS: Stanford has three returning All-Americans on its roster this season. Senior Carly Wopat, a two-time honoree, was a first team selection by the AVCA and Volleyball Magazine, while sophomore Inky Ajanaku was an honorable mention pick by the AVCA in 2012. Senior outside hitter Rachel Williams was an AVCA honorable mention selection in 2011. In total, the Cardinal has produced 31 All-Americans who have collected 70 total awards.
NATIONAL POLL: Stanford moved up a spot to No. 7 this week in the AVCA top 25. USC remained in the top spot, while Florida, Texas, Penn State and Michigan State round out the top 5. Five Pac-12 squads are ranked in the top 25, while UCLA and California are receiving votes.
RPI: In the latest Rating Percentage Index (RPI), the Cardinal came in at No. 5. Texas topped the poll, while Penn State, Florida and USC sit ahead of Stanford. Three Pac-12 squads are ranked in the top-10 and five in the top-30.
1,000 CLUB: Senior outside hitter Rachel Williams joined an elite group of players as she registered her 1,000th career kill at UCLA on Oct. 2. She is one of just three active Pac-12 players to have reached that plateau and becomes the 13th Stanford player since 1986 to accomplish the feat.
BLOCK CITY: Stanford’s team blocks per set mark of 3.03 is the best in the nation. Senior Carly Wopat leads the conference and is 13th nationally with 1.40 blocks per set, while sophomore Inky Ajanaku is third in the Pac-12 and 30th in the nation with 1.31 blocks per set. Wopat recently eclipsed the 500 block plateau, while Ajanaku tallied the 200th of her career against Colorado on Oct. 12.
CONFERENCE HONORS: Senior middle blocker Carly Wopat was named the Pac-12 Offensive Player of the Week on Oct. 14. She is the first Cardinal player recognized this season and collects the 85th weekly award for Stanford all-time, which paces the Pac-12. It marks the fifth weekly honor of Wopat’s career (fourth offensive).
SPREAD OFFENSE: Stanford setter Madi Bugg has controlled the offense this season, ranking second in the Pac-12 and fifth in the nation with 11.88 assists per set, spreading the love amongst her teammates in the process. Five Cardinal players are averaging at least 2.33 kills per set - Carly Wopat (3.26), Rachel Williams (3.00), Brittany Howard (2.86), Jordan Burgess (2.45) and Inky Ajanaku (2.33).
CLIMBING THE CHARTS: Senior Carly Wopat already ranks among the top 10 in school history with 524 career blocks. Recently, she moved from sixth place to fourth on the Cardinal’s career charts, passing former All-American Kerri Walsh (‘00) and Laura Olesen (‘90), and needs 55 more to match Cardinal great Foluke Akinradewo (‘09) with 579. Her 1.36 career blocks per set average would be tied for third in school history with Kim Oden (‘86).
SENIOR STATEMENT: Senior outside hitter Rachel Williams is one of the Cardinal leaders this season with 3.00 kills per set. She posted double-doubles in three consecutive matches (vs. Pacific, Florida & Texas) and leads the team with six overall. Her 21 kills against then-No. 8 Florida are the most by a Cardinal player this season.
DOMINANT DEFENSE: Junior libero Kyle Gilbert has led the defensive side of the ball for the Cardinal this season and ranks second on the Pac-12 charts with 4.70 digs per set. She collected a season-high 29 digs at California (9/25), leading all players. Gilbert is averaging 3.81 digs per set for her career, ranking second in program history behind Gabi Ailes (4.57).
HOME SWEET HOME: Maples Pavilion gives the Cardinal a true home court advantage as Stanford has won 22 consecutive home matches dating back to the start of the 2012 campaign. Stanford’s last loss at home came against Michigan on Dec. 3, 2011 in the second round of the NCAA Tournament.
LEADING THE CONFERENCE: Senior middle blocker Carly Wopat leads the Pac-12 and third in the nation with a .498 hitting percentage this season. Sophomore Inky Ajanaku is third in the conference with a .426 attack percentage, and 16th in the nation. Wopat is also eighth in the Pac-12 with 4.32 points per set and ninth with 3.26 kills per set.
HEAD COACH JOHN DUNNING: Now in his 13th season at the helm of the Cardinal program, head coach John Dunning is one of the most accomplished coaches in the collegiate volleyball world. Dunning has four national championships under his belt, has taken teams to nine Final Fours and carried six of his 12 Stanford teams to the national championship match.
MILESTONE FOR DUNNING: John Dunning secured his 700th career win during the 2010 season and will likely capture win No. 800 during 2013. In 29 years as a head coach, he is 790-166 (.826), giving him a winning percentage that ranks amongst the top-5 all-time for Division I coaches. Dunning is 353-64 in his 13 seasons on The Farm, leading all active coaches in the conference by winning percentage (.847).