No. 2 Volleyball Heads West to Colorado College This Weekend
WEEKLY RELEASE (PDF)
The No. 2 Washington University in St. Louis volleyball team will head to Colorado Springs, Colo. to compete in the Molten Colorado College Invitational on Friday-Saturday, Sept. 16-17. Three of the Bears’ four opponents this weekend are ranked in the top-15 of the latest American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) Top-25 poll in No. 9 Juniata College, No. 12 Colorado College and No. 15 Concordia College-Moorhead. Washington U. opens competition against Juniata on Friday at 5 p.m. (MT) and Colorado College at 7 p.m. (MT).
WEEKLY RECAP: BEARS DISPATCH THREE RANKED TEAMS
Washington University improved to 10-0 and picked up four more sweeps to win the WU/Asics National Invitational last Friday-Saturday in St. Louis, Mo. The Bears swept No. 6 Christopher Newport University, No. 8 Carthage College, No. 20 University of Wisconsin-Whitewater and Ohio Northern University. The toughest match came against Christopher Newport in what amounted to the tournament championship match, with the Bears coming back to take a close second-set 25-23 to remain unbeaten in matches and sets.
WUSTL NAMES THREE TO BEARS CLASSIC ALL-TOURNAMENT TEAM
Senior middle hitter Lauren Budde, junior libero Kelly Pang and junior outside hitter Drew Hargrave were each named to the WU/Asics National Invitational All-Tournament team. Budde led the Bears with 54 kills, an average of 4.5 per set while attacking .441, Pang corralled 62 digs, including a season-high 30 in the Bears’ 3-0 win over Christopher Newport, and Hargrave had 40 kills, a clip of 3.33 per set.
BEARS OFF TO ONE OF THE HOTTEST STARTS IN SCHOOL HISTORY
With four more sweeps at the WU/Asics National Invitational, the Washington University volleyball team is off to one of the hottest starts in school history. While the Bears also won their first 10 matches of the year last season, only once before has the team swept more than 10-straight matches to begin a season. In 1998 the Red and Green swept 11-straight opponents on the way to a 25-0 start. Elmhurst College took a set from the Bears in the 12th match of the season, and Juniata was the first team to hand them a loss on Oct. 9.
A LOOK AT THE MOLTEN INVITATIONAL FIELD
• No. 9 Juniata College brings a 5-2 overall record into this weekend’s tournament. The Eagles suffered a 3-1 loss to No. 5 Wittenberg and a 3-0 setback to No. 2 Emory during the first week of the season but have won their last four matches. WUSTL leads the all-time series with Juniata, 18-13.
• No. 12 Colorado College boasts an 8-0 record so far this season and the Tigers have dropped just three sets all year. Colorado College went 4-0 at the Molten Volleyball CC Classic last weekend. Washington U. leads the all-time series with Colorado College, 2-0; the last meeting was in 2009.
• Concordia-College is 8-1 so far this year and the Cobbers have won seven-straight matches heading into this weekend’s tournament. Concordia-College went 4-0 at the Wartburg Invitational last weekend. Washington U. leads the all-time series with Concordia-Moorhead, 3-0.
• Endicott College will travel the furthest this weekend, flying in all the way from Beverly, Mass. The Gulls are 3-4 so far this year, dropping four of their last five matches. WUSTL and Endicott met just once before, a Washington University victory in 2008.
LAUREN BUDDE NAMED D3VB NATIONAL PLAYER OF THE WEEK
Senior middle hitter Lauren Budde was named the D3VB National Player of the Week on Monday, Sept. 12, for her role in leading Washington University to a 4-0 record at the WU/Asics National Invitational. In four matches, Budde tallied a team-high 54 kills (4.50 per set) while hitting .441 with 38 digs, six aces and five total blocks. She had double-digit kills in all four matches and had three double-doubles (kills and digs). In the win over No. 8 Carthage, Budde tallied 14 kills on 18 swings with no errors to hit a WUSTL season-best .778.
THAT IS A TOUGH STRETCH OF GAMES
Starting with a showdown against No. 8 Carthage on Sept. 9, Washington U. began a stretch of six-straight matches against teams ranked in the AVCA Top-25 Poll. After facing Carthage, No. 20 UW-Whitewater and No. 6 Christopher Newport last week, the Bears will play No. 9 Juniata College, No. 12 Colorado College and No. 15 Concordia College-Moorhead in succession this weekend.
KELLY PANG BREAKS INTO THE TOP-10 IN DIGS
With 62 digs last week, junior libero Kelly Pang moved into 10th place in school history with 1,407 digs through just a little more than two seasons on the Danforth Campus. She jumped past Lori Nishikawa and Haleigh Spencer on the Bears’ all-time digs list, and sits just 37 digs behind Brooke Hortin for eighth place in school history.
CLOSING IN ON 1,000 KILLS AND 1,000 DIGS
Senior middle hitter Lauren Budde has eclipsed 900-career kills and 900-career digs and now has her sights set on becoming a member of the 1,000 kill and 1,000 dig club. Heading into this weekend’s matches, Budde has 968-career kills and 939 digs.
A FEW NOTES ON A STORIED RIVALRY
Washington University and Juniata College share perhaps the most prolific rivalry in Division III volleyball.
•The two school have met 31 times, with the Bears leading the all-time series, 18-13
•WUSTL and Juniata have played one another 11 times in the NCAA Tournament, with five of those meetings coming in the NCAA Championship match. The Bears lead the postseason series, 7-4.
• Washington University picked up a 3-2 win over Juniata in the team’s only meeting last season in Greencastle, Ind.
• The regular season match-up between WUSTL and Juniata in 2009 was the highest scoring match of the 25-point era. Although the Bears won 3-0, there were 186 points scored in just three sets, with the second set lasting to a 41-39 decision.
BEARS HEAD TO COLORADO SPRINGS FOR THE FIRST TIME SINCE 2002
Washington University returns to compete in Colorado Springs for the first time since the opening weekend of the 2002 season. The Bears posted a 4-0 record at Colorado College during that trip, sweeping all four opponents.