Cats Return Home to Face Baylor Saturday

MANHATTAN, Kan. - Kansas State will welcome its first Big 12 opponent of the season to Ahearn Field House when the Baylor Bears play the Wildcats on Sat., Sept. 15, at 1 p.m. No. 19 K-State opened conference action with a win in Lawrence, Kan., on Wednesday over Kansas 3-0 (30-20, 30-21, 30-25). The 9-3 Wildcats will look to continue their four-match win streak, while the Bears hope to upset K-State with their first conference win after falling 3-0 to Iowa State Wednesday.

The Wildcat Weekend match allows $1 admission for fans with a Kansas State vs. Missouri State football ticket. Live stats of the event can be followed online at www.kstatesports.com. A complete recap will be made available at Kansas State’s official athletic website following the match.

Kansas State Pre-Match Report

The Wildcats will face the Bears on Saturday fresh off of a 3-0 sweep of in-state rival Kansas on Wednesday. K-State won by scores of 30-20, 30-21, 30-25 to improve to 8-2. In its four-consecutive wins, K-State hit matches of over .250 including tallying .272 with 52 kills and 18 errors on 125 attempts against the Jayhawks.

The middle blockers for the Wildcats led the charge through the Jayhawks, as Kelsey Chipman and Megan Farr contributed 52 percent of the team’s kills. Chipman led with a 14-kill effort on .414 hitting while also assisting on three blocks. Farr led in blocks with five assisted and also notched 13 kills (.480 hitting). Nataly Korobkova and Rita Liliom each added nine kills, and Korobkova had her second match of four service aces.

Angie Lastra and Lauren Rosenthal had double-digit digs; Lastra finished with 18 and Rosenthal had a season-high 10. Stacey Spiegelberg again led in assists with 43 and continued her streak of matches with a service ace, tallying one.

Attack leaders for Kansas State are junior newcomer Nataly Korobkova and junior Rita Liliom, who is returning from a year-long injury. Korobkova has tallied 150 kills through 34 games and averages 4.41 kills per game on .254 hitting. The Krasnoyarsk, Russia, native is fourth for the Wildcats in digs with 64 (1.88 dpg) and third in blocks with 41. Liliom has 134 kills to date and averages 3.53 per game. In tournament matches from Hawaii and Manhattan, Kan., the product of Budapest, Hungary, notched the most kills with 87 to average 4.35 per game. On the season, Liliom has five service aces and 20 blocks.

Senior co-captain Stacey Spiegelberg leads the team in two categories: assists and service aces. The Overland Park, Kan., Wildcat has 495 assists on the year to average 13.03. Spiegelberg has served 18 aces and is second in digs with 73 (1.92 dpg). The Cats’ setter is also one of five K-Staters that has put back more than 20 blocks on the year - Spiegelberg has one solo and 25 assists.

Senior Angie Lastra returned to her original position at libero after spending 2006 as an outside hitter. She leads the squad with 165 digs at 4.34 per game. Lastra, from Carolina, Puerto Rico, is also one of five on the team to have double-digit service aces as she is third with 14.

Key wins for the Cats this year: a 3-2 season opener over then-No. 14 Cal Poly; “shock”ing WSU 3-1 in front of 6,000+ fans in Wichita, Kan.; sweeping Louisville in Hawaii when the Cardinals sat immediately below the Cats in the rankings; overpowering Arkansas during the Varney’s Kansas State Invitational as the Razorbacks were listed as receiving votes in the polls.

At Stake

K-State is currently on a four-match win streak with each coming in three games... The Wildcats have four straight matches of hitting over .250, and seven overall this season... K-State’s ace streak continues and sits at 266 straight matches of at least one service ace... KSU has won six of the last seven contests over Baylor and has a home streak of seven-straight over the Bears... K-State has won the last three Big 12 matches with two from last season over Texas Tech and Kansas... The Cats have held their last four opponents under .250 hitting... K-State has eight-straight matches that the Cats have hit .300+ in at least one game... The Wildcats have not lost a Saturday match this season.

Scouting Report: Baylor

The Bears started the season with a 7-3 record prior to conference play, but fell to 7-4 after being swept by Iowa State in their Big 12 opener. Baylor lost by scores of 23-30, 27-30, 29-31 to the Cyclones. BU finished with 45 kills and 21 errors on 133 attempts for a .180 hitting clip.

Haley Thomas led the Bears’ offense with 12 kills on .200 hitting. Taylor Barnes tallied an all-around game with five kills on .364 hitting, a team-high 34 assists, Baylor’s lone service ace and was second in digs with eight.

Defensivley, the Bears put down 12.5 blocks and were led by Amanda Modglin who collected eight block assists. Sarah Grace was the top digger of the squad as she had 25 on the night; Katie Sanders added eight along with Barnes.

On the season, Baylor has three hitters with triple-digit kills: Sanders leads with 184 (4.49 kpg), Anna Breyfogle has 107 (2.89 kpg) and Haley Thomas has 100 (2.56 kpg). Barnes has 509 assists to lead the Bears (12.41 apg) and also is atop the service aces category with 26 (0.63 sapg). Sarah Grace has 209 digs (5.10 dpg), while Kristen Schramek (125; 3.05 dgs), Sanders (137; 3.34 dpg) and Barnes (101; 2.46 dpg) have triple-digit digs as well. Breyfogle has knocked down 12 solo blocks on the year with 48 assisted for 61 total blocks (1.65 bpg).

K-State Against Big 12 Foes in Ahearn

The Wildcats are 107-106 (.502) against current members of the Big 12 in Ahearn Field House. This includes matches against all of its former Big 8 members (Colorado, Iowa State, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska and Oklahoma). Since 1996, K-State is 74-28 (.725) against the Big 12 in Ahearn Field House.

Head coach Suzie Fritz is 41-15 (.732) against the Big 12 in Ahearn Field House, including a perfect 10-0 mark in the 2003 season.