Nov. 9, 2011
No. 3 Stanford (19-4/13-4 Pac-12) at No. 11 Washington (18-6/10-6 Pac-12) - 7 p.m.
Nov. 11 - Hec Edmundson Pavilion - Seattle, Wash.
No. 3 Stanford (19-4/13-4 Pac-12) at Washington State (12-14/4-12 Pac-12) - 12:30 p.m.
Nov. 13 - Bohler Gym - Pullman, Wash.
THIS WEEK: The No. 3 Stanford women’s volleyball team travels to No. 11 Washington (18-6, 10-6 Pac-12) and Washington State (12-14, 4-12) this weekend. The Cardinal (19-4, 13-4 Pac-12) will take on the Huskies on Friday, Nov. 11 at 7 p.m. in Seattle and the Cougars on Sunday, Nov. 13 at 12:30 p.m. in Pullman, Wash.
CATCH THE CARDINAL: Stanford’s match at Washington will be televised by Fox Sports Net on a tape-delayed basis. Check local listings for match times in your area. Both matches will also be available via Gametracker on gostanford.com. KZSU radio will be broadcasting both matches at 90.1 FM or online at http://kzsu.stanford.edu/.
LOOKING AHEAD: Stanford returns to The Farm next weekend to play host to Oregon and Oregon State. The Cardinal will face the Ducks on Friday, Nov. 18 at 7 p.m. and the Beavers on Sunday, Nov. 20 at 1 p.m.
SOCIAL NETWORKING: Become a fan of the Cardinal on Facebook by searching for the “Stanford Women’s Volleyball” page. Follow the Cardinal at twitter.com/StanfordWVB to get updates on the team this season. Both sites will be updated live during matches this year.
LAST WEEK: Stanford picked up two road wins at Colorado and Utah last week. In the four-set win against the Buffaloes, sophomore Rachel Williams led the team with 13 kills, 10 digs and a career high seven blocks. Against the Utes, sophomore Carly Wopat tallied 10 kills and a .500 hitting percentage to go with six blocks and three digs.
Stanford is ranked 12th in the latest NCAA RPI rankings. The Cardinal is the third highest Pac-12 squad with UCLA coming in at No. 7 and USC sitting just ahead of Stanford at No. 11. Seven Pac-12 squads are ranked in the top-50 of the poll.
300 CLUB: The team’s win at Oregon State on Oct. 7 gave head coach John Dunning his 300th career victory at Stanford. He is now 308-53 all-time on The Farm.
DOMINATING DEFENSE: Stanford has turned up the defensive intensity this season. The Cardinal is second in the nation and the Pac-12 with 3.26 blocks per set. Stanford leads the conference with 17.23 digs per set. Stanford posted 21 blocks against Notre Dame and Arizona, and 104 digs against Duke, both are the most by a conference team this season.
AHEAD OF THE PAC: Sophomore Rachel Williams surpassed her previous career high for kills in each of the team’s first four matches of the season. The outside hitter is fifth in the conference with 4.30 kills per set (23rd nationally) and 5.00 points per set (18th nationally). She is tied for the Pac-12 lead with teammate Karissa Cook with 14 double-doubles so far this year.
BLOCK PARTY: Sophomore middle blocker Carly Wopat is second in the Pac-12 with 1.57 blocks per set, which ranks fifth nationally. Wopat has posted a team-high nine blocks three times this season (vs. Delaware, vs. Notre Dame and vs. Arizona).
CONTROLLING THE OFFENSE: Junior setter Karissa Cook has adjusted nicely to Stanford’s five-one system. After sharing setting duties with Cassidy Lichtman for the past two seasons running a six-two offense, Cook ranks fourth in the Pac-12 with 11.25 assists per set. She leads the conference, along with teammate Rachel Williams, with 14 double-doubles on the year.
PAC-12 PLAYERS OF THE WEEK:
Sept. 5: Junior Karissa Cook was named the Defensive Player of the Week for her efforts at the Stanford Invitational. She averaged 5.00 digs per set and 0.88 blocks per set in wins over Notre Dame and then-No. 18 Duke.
Sept. 12: Sophomore Rachel Williams picked up her first career weekly honors after being selected the Pac-12 Offensive Player of the Week. She led the team to wins over then-No. 2 Penn State and then-No. 7 Florida and was named the MVP of the Nike Volleyball Big Four Classic. Sophomore Carly Wopat picked up Defensive Player of the Week, joining Williams on the all-tournament team.
Oct. 3: Carly Wopat earned Offensive Player of the Week, becoming the first player to earn offensive and defensive honors in the same season. She hit .502 against ASU and Arizona, registering 26 kills and 14 blocks.
Oct. 17: Karissa Cook was tabbed Offensive Player of the Week, joining teammate Carly Wopat as the only two conference players to earn offensive and defensive honors this season. Cook led the team to sweeps over Washington State and then-No. 2 Washington, averaging 11.00 assists, 1.00 kills and 1.75 points per set.
NATIONAL HONORS: Junior setter Karissa Cook garnered AVCA National Player of the Week honors after leading the Cardinal to sweeps over Washington State and then-No. 2 Washington. She became the second conference player to earn the national honor this season. It marked the 14th time a Stanford player had received the recognition.
ALL-CONFERENCE RETURNERS: All-Conference returners for the Cardinal this season are junior Hayley Spelman (honorable mention) and sophomores Rachel Williams and Carly Wopat (all-freshmen). With the departure of Gabi Ailes, Alix Klineman and Cassidy Lichtman, the trio will be looked upon to lead the Stanford offense in 2011.
NEW ROLES: With just two seniors on the roster of 14, the junior class has stepped up into new leadership roles this season. Setter Karissa Cook is running a five-one system for the first time since she’s been on the Farm. Hannah Benjamin, who earned the starting libero spot to start the season, is being looked upon to lead the Cardinal defense as she has the most on-court experience of the returning defensive specialists.
HAPPY SHE’S BACK: Senior setter Katherine Sebastian has rejoined the team this season after taking a one-year hiatus to study abroad in Barcelona, Spain. Sebastian, who was a member of the 2008 and 2009 Cardinal teams, will back up Karissa Cook at the setter position this season.
NEWCOMERS: Stanford’s class of 2015 includes outside hitter/defenisve specialist Lauren Birks, outside hitter Morgan Boukather and libero/defensive specialist Kyle Gilbert. All three players hail from southern California and made their collegiate debuts at the Rice Invitational.
NATIONAL POLL: Stanford remained at No. 3 in the American Volleyball Coaches Association’s top-25 this week defeating Colorado and Utah last week. UCLA maintained the No. 1 spot. Nebraska is ahead of the Cardinal at No. 2, while USC and California round out the top-5. Six Pac-12 squads are ranked in the top 20, including four of the top-5.
PAC-12 COACHES’ POLL: Stanford was chosen by the conference coaches to place fourth in the newly formed Pac-12. Stanford garnered 92 points in the preseason poll. Final Four participant USC was picked to win the conference title, earning 11 first-place votes. Last year’s national runner-up Cal was selected second, while Washington came in third. Six conference teams advanced to the postseason in 2010, while the Pac-12 has won five of the last 10 NCAA titles. The coaches have correctly chosen the conference champion in 14 of the previous 22 polls.
CARDINAL ABROAD: Ten members of the Cardinal squad and its staff traveled to China in June for two tournaments and a lot of sight-seeing. Stanford played six matches (three in Weifang and three in Beijing) and experienced the Chinese culture. Among the sites, the team visited the Great Wall, the Forbidden City, the Temple of Heaven and Tiananmen Square.
2010 IN REVIEW: In 2010, Stanford posted a 27-4 overall record and claimed a share of its unprecedented 14th conference championship. The team finished the year with a postseason run to its fourth NCAA regional final in the past five years. The Cardinal defeated 11 ranked opponents and won 17 matches by 3-0 margins. Seniors Gabi Ailes, Alix Klineman and Cassidy Lichtman all collected All-America honors, while Klineman was the Pac-10 and Volleyball Magazine Player of the Year.
TAKING ON THE BEST: Once again, head coach John Dunning has lined up one of the most challenging schedules in the nation for the Cardinal. Stanford is slated to play 12 regular-season matches against teams ranked in the preseason poll, and 15 against teams that made appearances in the 2010 NCAA Tournament.
HEAD COACH John Dunning: In his 11th 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 10 Stanford teams to the national championship match.
MILESTONE FOR DUNNING: In last year’s season opener versus Tulane, head coach John Dunning secured his 700th career win. In 26 years as a head coach, Dunning is 745-155 (.828), giving him a winning percentage that ranks amonth the top-5 all-time for Division I coaches. Dunning is 308-53 in his 11 seasons on The Farm, leading all active coaches in the conference by winning prcentage (.853).
HALL OF FAMER: Head coach John Dunning has been selected as one of three inductees into the American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) 2011 Hall of Fame class. He, along with Liz Masakayan and Gerald `Gerry’ Matacotta, will be honored at the December 15 ceremony, held in conjunction with the 2011 Final Four in San Antonio, Texas.
SCOUTING WASHINGTON: Washington enters the weekend with an 18-6 overall record and a 10-6 mark in the Pac-12 Conference. The Huskies dropped both of its match last weekend at No. 1 UCLA (28-26, 25-13, 28-26) and at No. 4 USC (25-15, 25-16, 25-21). Washington leads the nation with 3.39 blocks per set and the conference with 1.57 service aces per set. Freshman outside hitter Krista Vansant leads the squad with 3.39 kills per set and 2.49 digs per set. Senior middle blockers Bianca Rowland and Lauren Barfield are one and three in the conference in blocks per set with 1.57 and 1.46, respectively. Sophomore libero Jenna Orlandini anchors the defense with 4.38 digs per set, ranking sixth in the Pac-12.
THE SERIES WITH THE HUSKIES: Stanford holds a 47-10 all-time series lead over Washington. The Cardinal swept the Huskies in the first meeting between the teams this season. Outside hitter Rachel Williams led the team with 15 kills and five digs, while setter Karissa Cook racked up 30 assists, 13 digs, five kills and four blocks.
SCOUTING WASHINGTON STATE: Washington State holds a 12-14 overall record and a 4-12 mark in the Pac-12. The Cougars were swept by both No. 4 USC and No. 1 UCLA on the road last weekend. WSU is fourth in the conference with 1.16 aces per set and eighth with a .197 hitting percentage and 2.02 blocks per set. Senior outside hitter Meagan Ganzer leads the Pac-12 this season with 4.79 kills and 5.32 points per set. Middle blocker Rachel Todorovich is second on the squad with 2.26 kills per set, while sophomore setter Camryn Irwin is eighth in the Pac-12 with 9.63 assists per set.
THE SERIES WITH THE COUGARS: The Cardinal is 49-3 all-time against the Cougars. Stanford swept Washington State in the first meeting this season at Maples Pavilion. All 14 players on the roster saw action in the contest. Rachel Williams led the team with 13 kills, nine digs and two blocks. Redshirt freshman Lydia Bai added 12 kills on a .455 hitting percentage as the team hit a season best .419 in the match.