Notes: Cats Start Two-Match Road Swing at Texas Tech

OCT 24, 3 PM

United Supermarkets Arena
Lubbock, TX

11-8 (3-4 Big 12)

13-8 (2-5 Big 12)

News Radio KMAN (93.3 FM/1350 AM)

For the fourth time over the last six matches, K-State will play on the road as the Wildcats take on Texas Tech in Lubbock on Saturday, October 24 at 3 p.m.
K-State has won two of its last three matches, but is coming off a straight-set loss to No. 2 Texas this past Wednesday.
Texas Tech, which had a bye this past midweek, also fell to the Longhorns in its last match, a 3-0 sweep on October 17.
The Red Raiders have lost five of their last six matches, two of which were in Lubbock.
K-State is currently fifth the Big 12 standings while Texas Tech is seventh as the two teams wrap up the first half of their conference slate on Saturday.
The Wildcats have won two straight against the Red Raiders, sweeping the season series a year ago.

Despite Wednesday’s loss, K-State still held a Texas offense, which entered the match hitting above .340 in conference play, to a .246 clip.
The attack percentage by the Longhorns snapped their seven-match streak in Big 12 action of hitting above .300.
K-State held Texas to its second-lowest hitting percentage this season, continuing a trend for the Wildcat defense of suffocating the opponents’ attack.
Over the last 10 matches, K-State has held two teams to their lowest hitting efficiency this year (Sept. 23 - KU, .220 & Oct. 16 - at Oklahoma, .135).
Four other opponents - Wisconsin, Arkansas, Iowa State and Texas - turned in either their second or third lowest hitting percentage of the year against K-State (at the time of the match).
KU (No. 1), Texas (No. 3), and Arkansas (No. 28) are all in the nation’s top-30 in hitting percentage entering this weekend.

A key factor to the K-State defense against Texas was its 7.0 blocks, the eighth time over the last 11 matches the Wildcats reached that number.
Over that 11-match stretch, K-State is averaging 2.20 blocks/set - compared to its 1.97/set over the first nine contests.
Over the last two matches, the Wildcats are averaging 3.33 blocks/set.
The Wildcats are fifth in the Big 12 with 2.17 blocks/set in conference-only matches.

K-State, which had 50 digs on Wednesday against Texas, continues to be among the Big 12 leaders in digs/set as it is second in the conference with an average of 16.54.
The Wildcats are also second in the Big 12 with 16.46 digs/set in conference-only contests.
K-State had 22 digs in the first set against Texas, which was the 19th time this year that the Wildcats had 20 or more digs in a set.
Three Wildcats - Kersten Kober (5th/3rd), Bryna Vogel (10th/7th), and Katie Brand (9th/10th) - are among the Big 12’s top-10 in both overall and conference-only matches.

Kersten Kober had 10 digs against Texas, giving her 17 matches this season and 45 in her career with double-digit digs.
The junior moved into 16th place on K-State’s career digs list as she has 927.
She also has 301 digs this year, giving her back-to-back 300-dig campaigns (first for K-State since Kuulei Kabalis in 2011-12).
Kober’s current average of 4.75 digs/set in Big 12 matches is nearly a dig per set higher than her clip in 2014 (3.76).

In addition to 10 digs in three of the last four matches (all three sets), Kober has an ace in each of the four contests.
It is the first time Kober has an ace in four straight matches since she had one in five consecutive October 1-18, 2014.
Kober has nine aces this year, tied for fourth amongst the Wildcats.

The team leader in aces, Alyssa Schultejans, had one of the two K-State aces against Texas, giving her 18 on the year.
Schultejans has an ace in three straight matches entering this weekend and five over her last six contests.
The freshman is eighth in the Big 12 with 0.26 aces/set in overall matches.
Schultejans’ 18 aces are the most by a K-State freshman since Katie Brand had 27 in 2013.

Katie Brand used 23 assists and 15 digs against Texas to record her Big 12-best 12th double-double of the season.
The redshirt junior also moved into a tie with Gabby Guerre for fifth on K-State’s career double-doubles list.
Next up for Brand on the career list is Liz Wegner, who had 44 from 1998-2001.
Brand’s 43 double-doubles have come in 79 career matches.
Guerre needed 118 career matches to notch 43 double-doubles.

Katie Brand has gone beyond assists, and digs, over the last six matches as she is averaging 1.65 kills/set since September 26.
The setter, who has six or more kills in four of the last six contests, is leading the Big 12 with a .425 attack percentage (min. 3.0 attacks/set) in conference-only matches.
Brand had six kills on 10 attacks against Texas on Wednesday, hitting .600 - the second time in the last three matches she had an attack percentage of .600 or greater (.636 vs. West Virginia, Oct. 10).
In seven Big 12 matches this year, Brand is averaging 1.54 kills, 10.58 assists, 2.79 digs and 2.04 points.
While fourth in assists/set in conference-only matches, Brand leads all Big 12 setters in kills, digs, blocks and points.

For the 12th time this season, Brooke Sassin either led or tied for the team lead in kills when she had seven vs. Texas.
The junior is currently fourth in the Big 12 with a team-best 3.49 kills/set and 3.94 points/set.
Sassin’s average of 3.49 kills is up from her 2014 output of 2.79 (312 kills/112 sets).
Sassin has helped K-State enter the weekend second among Big 12 teams and 15th in the nation with 14.24 kills/set.

Macy Flowers had a career-high six blocks on Wednesday vs. Texas, giving her 11 total over the last two matches.
Flowers, who did not play in a match this season until at TCU on October 3, is fifth in the Big 12 with 1.06 blocks/set in conference-only matches.
Since October 3, Flowers leads the Wildcats with 18 blocks, helping her average 2.5 points/set (third on K-State).

Despite last week’s road win at Oklahoma, K-State slid two spots to No. 60 in this week’s RPI rankings.
The Wildcats have played eight opponents ranked in this week’s top-50 so far, including four from out of the Big 12: Texas (No. 6), KU (No. 8), Wisconsin (15), Iowa State (21), Creighton (23), Baylor (30), Arkansas (36), and Miami (47).
K-State is 1-7 against the RPI’s top-50.
Texas Tech is No. 129 in this week’s rankings.
The Wildcats are 8-0 against teams ranked 101 or higher in the RPI.

K-State leads the all-time series against Texas Tech, 32-10.
The Wildcats have won two straight against the Red Raiders, sweeping the season series in 2014.
Since 2005, K-State has won 18 of 20 matches against Texas Tech.
Last year’s 3-0 win in Lubbock snapped a two-match road losing streak for K-State in the series.
All-time, the Wildcats are 12-7 in Lubbock but have won 11 of the last 13.
K-State head coach Suzie Fritz has a 24-4 career record against Texas Tech.