Notes: Wildcats End First Half of Big 12 Season at West Virginia
Notes: Wildcats End First Half of Big 12 Season at West Virginia
Location: Morgantown, W. Va.
Arena: WVU Coliseum
West Virginia (Road #7)
Saturday, Oct. 25 - 5 p.m. ET
Series: K-State leads, 3-1
Last Meeting: K-State won, 3-0 (25-13, 25-15, 25-14), in Manhattan on Nov. 9, 2013
Online: Mountaineer TV
Radio: News Radio 1350 KMAN (PBP - Rob Voelker)
Online Audio: Here or www.1350kman.com
AT A GLANCE
• Following its sweep of Oklahoma at home on Wednesday, No. 22 K-State hits the road for the first of three times over its next four matches when it heads to Morgantown to take on West Virginia on Saturday, Oct. 25 at 5 pm ET.
• The meeting will be the first between the Wildcats and Mountaineers this season as K-State wraps up its first half of the Big 12's double-round robin conference schedule format.
• The Wildcats are 5-2 in conference play, with a 3-0 record on the road.
• West Virginia enters Saturday coming off a 3-1 win at Baylor on Oct. 22, with last year's Big 12 Freshman of the Year Jordan Anderson leading the Mountaineers with 19 kills.
• West Virginia is one of four Big 12 teams holding a 3-4 conference record, with three of the four losses occurring at home.
• K-State's win vs. Oklahoma this past Wednesday was not just its 18th win of the season--matching its entire win total from last season--but it gave the Wildcats their best seven-match start to a Big 12 schedule since 2008 when they also went 5-2.
• In Big 12 history, K-State has opened its conference slate with a 5-2 record or better 11 times, but the first 10 times all happened between 1996 and 2008.
• The Wildcats have gone on to go 6-2 or better seven times, with the last being 2008.
• K-State's next Big 12 win would match the Wildcats' six conference wins from all of last year (6-10).
ON THE ROAD AGAIN
• The Wildcats return to the road for their match against West Virginia, but the road has been favorable for K-State so far this season.
• K-State is 6-0 in true road matches, including three road wins in conference play.
• The Wildcats' six road wins are their most in a season since 2011 (6-6).
• The last time K-State won seven true road contests in a season was 2008 (8-4).
• K-State is one of two remaining teams in the Big 12 with a perfect road record (Texas, 6-0).
• This year marks just the second time in program history that K-State has won its first six true road matches in a season (1977, first 7).
• K-State is coming off one of its best offensive performances of the season, hitting .389 in the win against Oklahoma this past Wednesday.
• It was the highest hitting percentage for the Wildcats in a Big 12 match since Oct. 3, 2012 when they hit .417 vs. No. 22 Iowa State.
• K-State has hit over .300 in two of its last three matches and in five overall matches this season, its most since 2012 when it hit .300+ in 10 different contests.
• The 2012 team hit .300+ in five conference matches.
• K-State is fourth in conference-only matches with a .225 hitting percentage this season while it is also fourth among Big 12 teams in overall matches with a .247 clip.
JONES ON OFFENSE
• Helping K-State record its highest hitting percentage in a Big 12 match this season was redshirt senior Natali Jones, who hit a career-best .688 (min. 10 attempts) in the win over OU.
• Jones also set a career-high in kills as she registered 12 on 16 attempts (one error).
• It was the first time in Jones' career she had double-digit kills in a match.
• Jones has six or more kills in each of the last six matches, averaging 2.35 kills/set (47 kills/20 sets) over the stretch.
• She is also hitting .370 over her last six matches (47 k, 13e, 92att).
• Over the last six matches, Jones has hit higher than .300 four times and higher than .400 three times.
• Jones enters this weekend ninth in the Big 12 with a .315 hitting percentage in conference-only matches.
JONES ON DEFENSE
• While she is averaging nearly two kills/set this season, Jones is prominent in K-State's block, leading the team with a career-high 98 stuffs.
• Jones leads the Big 12 with 44 blocks and 1.76 blocks/set in conference-only matches.
• In overall matches, Jones is first in the Big 12 in blocks/set and eighth in NCAA Division I.
• Jones, who had 34 career blocks entering this season, has 18 blocks in the last three matches, averaging 2.0 blocks per set.
• Jones has five or more blocks in 11 matches this season.
• Redshirt sophomore Katie Brand enters the weekend third in the Big 12 with 11.05 assists/set this season.
• On Wednesday, Brand recorded her third career match with 30+ assists, 5+ kills, 5+ digs and 5+ blocks--second of which that was in a three-set contest (other: vs. KU, 10/2/13).
• Brand leads all Big 12 setters in kills, digs, blocks and points this season.
ALL ABOUT THAT ACE
• Sophomore Kersten Kober registered an ace on Wednesday, giving her an ace in five straight matches, the longest such streak of her career.
• Kober is second on the team with a career-high 20 aces.
• Of Kober's 20 aces, seven have been recorded in Big 12 play, which nearly matches her entire ace output from 2013 (9).
• Kober is one of two Big 12 players so far this season with 275+ digs and 20+ aces (Rachel Brummitt, Texas Tech, 375 digs, 26 aces).
BLOCK IT UP
• K-State's defense is one of the top blocking teams in both the Big 12 and nation as it checks in first in the conference and eighth in the country with 3.05 blocks/set.
• In conference-only matches, the Wildcats are also first in the Big 12 with 3.17 blocks/set.
• After Wednesday's 11.0 team blocks, K-State has 10+ blocks in 12 matches this season, including in three of the last four and seven of the last nine contests.
• Last season, K-State had 13 matches with 10 or more blocks.
• A K-State team has not averaged 3.0+ blocks/set for an entire season since 2007 (3.00), while the school record is 3.07 blocks/set (1988).
• Redshirt senior Chelsea Keating needs one more kill and one more ace to become the first K-State outside hitter since Kathleen Ludwig in 2009 to have 150+ kills, 150+ digs, 50+ blocks and 25+ aces in a season.
• Keating enters Saturday with 149 kills, 173 digs, 54 blocks and 24 aces--all career-highs.
• Keating leads the team with 24 aces, averaging 0.32 per set (7th in the Big 12).
• Sophomore Brooke Sassin recorded her 13th match this year with 10 or more kills on Wednesday vs. Oklahoma.
• Sassin has 10 or more kills in four of her seven Big 12 matches.
• Sassin also hit .375 vs. Oklahoma, which was her ninth match this season in which she hit .270+ and had 10+ kills.
AT THE POLLS
• K-State moved up from last week's No. 25 ranking to No. 22 in this week's AVCA Division I Coaches Poll.
• It is the highest the Wildcats have been ranked since they were No. 20 in the Nov. 12, 2012 poll.
• The Wildcats are one of two Big 12 teams ranked this week, trailing No. 2 Texas, which also received four first-place votes.
• K-State had the second-highest climb among teams ranked in the poll from last week to this week, behind Illinois jumping five spots from No. 15 to No. 10.
IN THE RPI
• K-State remained at No. 17 in the latest RPI rankings released by the NCAA on Monday.
• K-State is one of five Big 12 teams ranked in the RPI top 30, behind No. 3 Texas and ahead of No. 18 Kansas, No. 25 Oklahoma and No. 26 Iowa State.
• West Virginia is No. 86 in this week's RPI rankings.
• The Wildcats are 6-0 in true road matches, have five wins against this week's top 50 in RPI and hold a 9-2 record against the top 100.
• The Big 12 has the second-highest RPI among all conferences, trailing the Pac-12.
WEST VIRGINIA SERIES
• K-State leads the all-time series vs. West Virginia, 3-1.
• The Wildcats won the last meeting, 3-0 in Manhattan on Nov. 9, 2013.
• Last season, K-State dropped its only match in the series when it lost 3-1 in Morgantown on Sept. 27.
• K-State is 1-1 all-time in Morgantown.
• The Wildcats have swept the Mountaineers in three of the four meetings as they hold a 10-3 advantage in sets.