Wildcats Take on #1 Texas this Saturday

Nov. 22, 2013

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K-State Athletics

Coming off a sweep of Baylor this past Wednesday, the K-State volleyball team will head to Austin, Texas to take on not only the top team in the Big 12 but the nation's top-ranked team, No. 1 Texas.

The meeting is the second of the season between K-State and Texas. The Longhorns swept the Wildcats in Manhattan on Oct. 26, extending K-State's losing streak to Texas to 20 matches.

K-State will be led by Kaitlynn Pelger, who ranks in the top 10 in Big 12-only matches in kills, digs and aces per set, and Courtney Traxson. Pelger tied for the team-lead with six blocks against Baylor while Traxson tied for the team-lead in kills with eight. Traxson is averaging 3.5 kills per set over the last five matches.

The Wildcats are going to play back-to-back Big 12 road matches for the first time since Oct. 9 and 12 when they traveled to Iowa State and Oklahoma. K-State will attempt to notch its first Big 12 road win this season over the two-match stretch. The Wildcats are 0-6 on the road in conference-play.

Gregory Gym is not an easy place to play. The Longhorns have won 47 straight Big 12 matches in the building, with the last home loss occurring in 2008.

Texas is led by All-American Haley Eckerman. The junior outside hitter had 27 kills in a sweep of West Virginia on Nov. 21, giving her 64 kills over the last three matches (6.4 kills per set average). Eckerman has 4.49 kills per set in conference-only matches, which leads the Big 12.

The Wildcats will rely on their defense, as they have done all season. K-State is second in the Big 12 with an opponent hitting percentage of .178 while it paces the conference with 2.83 blocks per set. Texas, meanwhile, leads the Big 12 with a .286 hitting percentage.

Saturday's match can be heard on KMAN 1350 and k-statesports.com, with Rob voelker on the call. The pre-match show starts 3:30. The match can also be seen on Longhorn Network. Live stats will be available on k-statesports.com and Twitter updates will be provided by @kstate_gameday.

Notes: Wednesday's 13.0 blocks vs. Baylor fell half a block short of tying the Big 12 season-high for blocks in a conference three-set match. K-State established the season-high with 13.5 blocks against West Virginia on Nov. 9 ... K-State is second in the Big 12 with 2.86 blocks per set in conference-only matches ... Kaitlynn Pelger is 10 points away from tying Kim Zschau for second place on K-State's career points list ... Katie Brand has 971 assists this season, which are the third-most by a K-State freshman in program history ... The Wildcats are 0-10 all-time against teams ranked No. 1 in the AVCA Coaches Top 25 Poll.

More notes here.

K-State (17-9, 5-8 Big 12) at #1 Texas (20-2, 13-0)
4 pm in Gregory Gym in Austin, Texas

All-time series: Texas leads 30-7
Last meeting: Texas won 3-0 (25-11, 25-18, 25-20)

Series Notes: K-State has lost 20 straight matches to Texas ... The Wildcats have not won in Austin since 2001.