Cats, Frogs Square Off Saturday in Fort Worth


GAME PREVIEW
NOV 5, 5:00 PM CT

The Rickel
Fort Worth, TX

NR
K-STATE
WILDCATS
17-7 (6-5 Big 12)

NR
TCU
HORNED FROGS
10-11 (3-8 Big 12)

FOX Sports Southwest Plus
1350 KMAN

MANHATTAN, Kan. – The Kansas State volleyball team hits the road again as it takes on the TCU Horned Frogs at The Rickel Saturday. First serve is slated for 5 p.m., and will be broadcast nationally on FOX Sports Southwest Plus.

K-State (17-7, 6-5 Big 12) sits in fourth place in the Big 12 standings while TCU (10-11, 3-8) is tied for seventh the league. The Wildcats took a four-set decision from TCU at Ahearn Field House on Oct. 8. TCU is currently riding a seven-match losing streak.

Chuck LaMendola and Alexia Heist will call the action for FOX Sports Southwest Plus. Fans can also listen to Rob Voelker call the match on local radio at 1350 KMAN and at k-statesports.com.

 

AT A GLANCE

·         Kansas State travels to Fort Worth, Texas, to take on the TCU Horned Frogs (10-11, 3-8 Big 12) Saturday at 5 p.m.

·         K-State claimed the season’s first meeting between the teams in four sets at Ahearn Field House on Oct. 8.

·         K-State looks to sweep the season series with TCU for the first time since 2014 and third time in the series’ history.

·         K-State ranks first in the Big 12 with 13.51 assists/set and second in kills/set 14.10.

·         TCU allows the most assists and kills per set in the Big 12.

·         The match will be broadcast nationally on FOX Sports Southwest Plus.

·         Fans can also listen to the match on local radio at 1350 KMAN and on K-StateSports.com.

 

LAST TIME OUT

·         K-State fell to No. 4 Kansas in five sets (18-25, 28-26, 22-25, 25-21, 11-15) at Ahearn Field House.

·         KU swept the season series and have won five straight in the Sunflower Showdown.

·         The match marked the second time this season that the Wildcats took the fourth-ranked team in the country to five sets.

·         Overall, K-State is 1-4 against ranked opponents this season.

·         Katie Brand, Brooke Sassin and Bryna Vogel all recorded double-doubles in the match.

·         It was Brand’s fifth straight double-double and Vogel’s fourth straight.

·         Four Wildcats reached double-figure kills: Sassin (18), Vogel (14), Kylee Zumach (14) and Elle Sandbothe (10).

·         K-State collected double-figure blocks for the second straight match.

 

A LOOK AT K-STATE

·         Kansas State (17-7, 6-5 Big 12) enters the match 5-5 over its last 10 matches.

·         K-State has only had consecutive losses twice this season and have not lost more than two straight matches.

·         K-State is not receiving votes or ranked in the AVCA top 25 poll for the first time since the initial week of the season, breaking a string of eight straight weeks.

·         K-State is 13-1 this season when winning the first set and 9-4 when tied at 1-1.

·         In the NCAA’s latest RPI release of the season, K-State comes in at No. 14 - the second-highest of any Big 12 team (3. Texas).

·         K-State has registered more kills than its opponent in 13 of the last 17 matches.

·         Kansas State is second in the Big 12 in team kills/set with 14.10, which ranks 28th nationally.

·         The team’s 13.51 assists/set are tops in the conference and seventh-best in the NCAA.

·         K-State has never finished a season in which it led the conference in team kills/set or assists/set.

·         Overall, K-State ranks in the top three of the Big 12 in 11 major team statistical categories.

 

A LOOK AT TCU

·         TCU enters the match 10-11 overall and 3-8 in the Big 12.

·         After beginning conference play 3-1, the Frogs have lost seven consecutive conference matches and currently sit in ninth in the standings.

·         Senior middle blocker Natalie Gower ranks third in the Big 12 with a .365 hitting percentage and second in the conference with 1.22 blocks/set.

·         Junior setter Kaylee Smith is second in the league with 0.31 service aces/set.

·         TCU allows the most assists and kills per set in the Big 12.

 

A LOOK AT THE SERIES

·         Kansas State leads the all-time series, 7-2, dating back to 2012.

·         K-State has won the last two meetings, dating back to last season.

·         The two sides have split the four meetings in Fort Worth (2-2).

·         TCU won the last meeting at home in five sets last season.

·         K-State seeks a season sweep for the first time since 2014 and third time in the series’ history.

 

CLIMBING THE CHARTS

·         After 55 assists against KU, senior setter Katie Brand (4,586 career assists) moved into second place on K-State’s all-time career assists list in the rally-scoring era (since 2001).

·         Her career double-double total currently sits at 66, which is four shy of equaling K-State’s all-time mark of 69 held by Kim Zschau (1995-98).

·         Senior libero Kersten Kober (1,462 career digs) moved into third place all-time (rally-scoring era) on K-State’s career list with 16 digs vs. KU Wednesday.

·         Senior outside hitter Brooke Sassin has 971 career kills as a Wildcat. With 29 more, she will become just the sixth Wildcat to reach 1,000 in the rally scoring era.

 

ON AND OFF THE COURT

·         Thursday, it was announced that Katie Brand is one of 10 finalists for the Senior CLASS Award that recognizes student-athletes for contributions in the community, classroom, character and competition.

·         Brand would become the first Wildcat to ever win the award.

·         Brand, along with Kersten Kober, were both named to the CoSIDA Academic All-District First Team Thursday.

·         It marks the second straight season the pair have achieved the first-team honor.

 

D-D-D DEFENSE

·         The Cats picked up 10.0 blocks against KU Wednesday, the 11th match reaching double-digit blocks.

·         In 2015, K-State only had six matches with double-figure blocks.

·         K-State is 9-2 when recording 10.0 or more team blocks.

·         K-State has recorded double-figure blocks in back-to-back matches for the fourth time this season, something the Cats only did once in 2015.

·         The Cats have held their last two opponents to under a .200 attacking percentage, the second time doing so in consecutive matches.

 

BRAND RECOGNITION

·         Redshirt senior setter Katie Brand leads the Big 12 lead with 15 double-doubles this season.

·         Brand has recorded an assist-dig double-double in 11 of the last 13 matches, including the last five.

·         In the win over Baylor, Brand eclipsed 1,000 assists this season - her fourth 1,000-assist season as a Wildcat.

·         She became the eighth Wildcat to join the Double-Grand Club as she now has over 4,000 career assists and 1,000 career digs.

·         Brand is the Big 12’s active career leader in assists, leading the next highest by nearly a thousand, and is No. 4 on the NCAA’s active career assists list.

 

LUCKY NO. 4

·         Kansas State is 10-2 in four-set matches this season, equaling the school record for four-set victories in a season (1987).

·         K-State is 12-4 in the fourth set overall and 6-2 in the set in conference matches.

 

ASSASSIN

·         Senior outside hitter Brooke Sassin’s 971 career kills ranks her seventh on K-State’s career kill list in the rally-scoring era (since 2001).

·         She leads the team with 16 matches in double-figure kills, having done so in three straight matches and seven of the last eight overall.

 

DOUBLE DOUBLE-DOUBLES

·         Katie Brand and junior opposite Bryna Vogel are both on season-long streaks of double-doubles.

·         Brand has recorded an assist-dig double-double in five straight matches, her longest such streak since the 2014 season in which she had 14 consecutive matches.

·         Vogel has posted a kill-dig double-double in four straight, the longest of her career.

·         Vogel posted a Big 12 career-best 23 digs in the five-set match with KU.