PURDUE OPENS THIS WEEKEND
August 28, 2013INDIANA SPORTS PAGE
PURDUE SPORTS RELEASE
Tournament central: here
Friday, Aug. 30:
Saturday, Aug. 31:
Saturday: $2 admission for youth volleyball teams who register in advance (email email@example.com)
The Mortar Board Premier
The tournament is sponsored by Mortar Board, which is a national honor society that recognizes college seniors for excellence in the areas of scholarship, leadership and service. Mortar Board members represent the top scholars and leaders on their campuses. Since its founding in 1926, Purdue's chapter of Mortar Board has awarded over a million dollars in fellowships and awards to Purdue students, staff and student organizations. The money for these awards comes largely from the annual sale of a calendar, appropriately called the Mortar Board and recognized by virtually every Purdue student and alum.
Mortar Board will recognize student-athletes from all four teams for their scholarship and service accomplishments after each team's match on Friday evening.
The Book on the Boilermakers
Last Time Out:Purdue advanced to the Sweet 16 after sweeping Colorado State in the NCAA first round and posting a five-set win over No. 12 Florida State in Tallahassee, Fla. The Boilermakers fell to No. 11 Minnesota in the Sweet 16 to end the season.
Statistically Speaking: Outside hitters Catherine Rebarchak (2.20) and Annie Drews (2.14), middle blocker KiKi Jones (1.86) and outside hitter Val Nichol (1.72) will carry the offensive load for the Boilers. Jones hit at a team-best .360 clip, served up 12 aces and put up 0.95 blocks per set. Defensively, libero Carly Cramer posted 4.23 digs per set, while setter Rachel Davis (2.34), and defensive specialists Amanda Neill (2.23) and Hilliary Fox(1.95) followed. Cramer served up a team-leading 36 aces, while Neill added 13. As a team, Purdue hit .244 and served up 129 aces.
Alabama A&M: This is the first meeting between the Boilermakers and the Bulldogs.
Western Kentucky (WKU leads the series 2-1): The Lady Topper won the first two meetings in the series, which began at the Louisville Classic on Sept. 16, 1994. WKU won a five-set decision at the 2002 Mortar Board Premier, but Purdue took the most recent meeting via a 3-0 sweep on Aug. 27, 2010 at the Mortar Board Premier.
What a Difference a Win Makes...
Talking About the Women of Troy
Last Time Out:USC advanced to the Elite Eight in 2012 before falling to Texas 3-0 to end the season. The Women of Troy have advanced to the NCAA second round or farther each of the last nine seasons, including four Final Four appearances, one Sweet 16 and one Elite Eight.
Statistically Speaking:Outside hitter Samantha Bricio, the 2012 Pac-12 Freshman of the Year, headlines the offense, while first team All-American and Pac-12 Libero of the Year Natalie Hagglund holds down the back court. Bricio put down 4.06 kills per set in 2012, while also adding a team-best 43 aces and 2.39 digs per set. Outside hitter Sara Shaw (2.87) and middle blocker Alexis Olgard (2.06) also return after averaging more than two kills per set. Shaw also chipped in 27 aces and 2.79 digs per set, while Olgard hit at a team-best .394 clip and put up a team-high 0.95 blocks per set.
Hagglund shouldered most of the defensive load with 5.02 digs pers et, while Shaw (2.79), Bricio (2.39) and setter Hayley Crone (2.19) also aided the team. Crone also dished out 11.05 assists per set and served up 31 aces. As a team, USC outhit opponents .264 to .182 and served up 155 aces, while allowing just 93.
All About Alabama A&M
Last Time Out:The Lady Bulldogs advanced to the finals of the Southwestern Athletic Conference tournament but fell to Jackson State to wrap up the season. The finals appearance was the team's 12 in the last 13 years.
Statistically Speaking:Alabama A&M returns first team All-SWAC setter Ashley Forman, but must replace its top three kill producers from a year ago. Middle blocker Leslie Ekpe is the top returning player on offense, after averaging 1.62 kills per set in 2012. She also led the team with 91 blocks. Outside hitter Kyanna Sales chipped in 1.40 kills and 1.47 digs per set last season.
Forman led the Lady Bulldogs defensively in 2012 with 2.41 digs per set, while libero Rebecca Cortez pulled up 2.29 digs per stanza last season. Forman also served up 21 aces and dished out 9.13 assists per set. As a team, Alabama A&M hit at a .197 clip and served up 135 aces.
Words About Western Kentucky
Last Time Out:Western Kentucky won the Sun Belt title and advanced to the NCAA Tournament second round with a win over Loyola Marymount, before falling to No. 2 Stanford.
Statistically Speaking:WKU returns three of its top four hitters from a year ago in middle blocker Heather Boyan (2.81) and outside hitter Paige Wessel (2.56) and Haley Bodway (2.33), but must replace Jordyn Skinner's 2.94 kills and 2.78 digs per set. Boyan hit at a team-best .383 clip and chalked up a team-high 0.87 blocks in 2012, while Wessel hit .376 for the season.
Setter Melanie Stutsman was picked as the preseason setter of the year for the Sun Belt after dishing out 11.2 assists, adding 2.12 digs per set and serving up 22 aces in 2012, while libero Ashley Potts was tabbed as the SBC preseason defensive player of the year after leading WKU with 4.72 digs per set and adding 22 aces. The team hit at a .296 clip, while the defense held foes to a .146 percentage.
On August 27, 2012, the team was ranked seventh, a listing which tied the highest ranking in program history, matching the No. 7 listing from Nov. 14, 1983. Purdue was ranked No. 9 in the 2012 Preseason AVCA Coaches Poll, marking their highest starting listing in program history.
The 2013 preseason ranking is Purdue's 130th all-time since the AVCA polls began in 1982, including preseason and postseason listings.
Purdue was listed among the Top 10 in six straight polls from Nov. 7, 2011, to Aug. 27, 2012, - its longest stay there since 1983 (eight straight polls: Sept. 26 to Nov. 28).
A Tough Slate