Volleyball Opens Big 12 Play in Lubbock

Ashley Smith

Sept. 23, 2014

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FORT WORTH, Texas - Coming off a 4-0 week, the TCU volleyball team will head to Lubbock, Texas to take on the undefeated Texas Tech Red Raiders to open Big 12 play on Wednesday, Sept. 24 at 6 p.m., at the United Supermarkets Arena. 

The 10th matchup all-time between the Horned Frogs (10-4) and Texas Tech (12-0) will be televised live on FOX Sports Southwest Plus. The Red Raiders and TCU have split the last four meetings in the Frogs' first two years in the Big 12, with TCU taking both victories in 2012, while Texas Tech grabbed both wins in 2013.

Fans unable to attend the match in Lubbock can see live stat updates through TexasTech.StatBroadcast.com, while a live audio feed will be available through FrogVision with a CBS Sports All-Access subscription with Jeff Lewis on the call.

TCU returns for the 2014 season after posting a winning record for the ninth time in the last 12 years under head coach Prentice Lewis in 2013.

2014 marks the 19th season in program history and the 13th under the helm of Lewis. 14 returners will be on the roster for the Horned Frogs, including five returning starters and the libero.

Under the tenure of Lewis, TCU has finished with a .500 record in nonconference play every year since 2002 and has garnered at least one preseason tournament title.

Ashley Smith is riding MVP honors from the TCU Molten Invitational and now leads the team with 132 kills and 2.93 kills per set. In four matches last week, Smith put down a team-high 48 kills with a .404 clip. She also notched her third double-double against Sam Houston State and finished the weekend with 29 digs, 55.5 point, four service aces and seven blocks.

Stephanie Holland is following close behind and is helping should the offensive load. Holland has 130 kills on the season, 2.71 kills per set and a .302 hitting percentage. Holland has also been defensive at the net for TCU and is second on the team with 28 total blocks.

The Frogs once against have two players ranked in the top 10 in hitting percentage for the Big 12, with Blaire Pickens moving up to No. 4 in the league with a .369 hitting percentage. Regan McGuire joins her on the list this week and checks in at No. 9 with a .330 clip.

Alexia Heist and Trisha Langley are dishing out the assists for the second year in a row, with the duo recording 316 and 246 assists, respectively. Langley is lethal from behind the service line, with 22 aces on the season, 0.44 service aces per set and is ranked No. 49 nationally.

Sutton Sunstrum has held down the backcourt for TCU in its first three weekends of play and has recorded with 126 digs and 4.50 digs per set,which is ranked No. 4 in the Big 12. Shane Peters has taken over the spot in the last week of play and has 98 digs on the season and 3.92 digs per set.

TCU wrapped up its last week of preseason tournament action by going 4-0 with a midweek win over Abilene Christian and going 3-0 at the TCU Molten Invitational to take the crown.

The Frogs opened the tournament with a win over Sam Houston State on Friday in four sets, before notching two sweeps over UAPB and High Point on Saturday to win their first tournament title of the season.

Ashley Smith was named MVP of the tournament and earned her third all-tournament honor of the season. She led the team in kills, points and hitting percentage and was the only Big 12 player ranked in the top 10 of all three categories for the week.

Regan McGuire and Stephanie Holland also earned spots on the all-tournament team for the weekend. Holland finished with 22 kills on the weekend, 2.20 kills per set, a .308 hitting percentage and nine blocks. McGuire notched 18 kills and 15 blocks on the weekend for 1.67 blocks per set, which was good for No. 4 in the Big 12.

Texas Tech is off to a perfect 12-0 start to the season to lead the conference and have won all four preseason tournaments, including going 3-0 this past weekend at the Lone Star Showdown.

The Red Raiders are fresh off two weekly awards for libero Rachel Brummitt and middle blocker Lauren Douglass. Brummitt was named Defensive Player of the Week for the fifth time in her career after recording 71 digs over the weekend including a 39-dig performance against Air Force, which broke the school record and Big 12 four-set record.

Douglass was named MVP of the Lone Star Showdown after notching 41 kills for the weekend, along with a .383 hitting percentage to push her season average up to .398 to lead the league.

Jenna Allen paces the Red Raiders' offense with 148 kills and 3.36 kills per set, as Douglass is also contributing big with 136 kills and 3.02 kills per set. Allen is also picking up 98 digs on the season and 2.23 digs per set, while Douglass is a force at the net with 47 total blocks and 1.04 blocks per set.

The back row for Texas Tech is at the top of the Big 12, as Brummitt is averaging 5.29 digs per set to lead the conference, while also being ranked No. 16 nationally. The Red Raiders have three top-26 national rankings as a team, as they check in at No. 8 in assists per set (13.58), No. 20 in kills per set (14.24) and No. 26 in digs per set (16.62).

Texas Tech holds a slight advantage at 5-4 in the series record after sweeping TCU in the two meetings last year. Before last year, the Frogs won the last four meetings, including sweeping the Red Raiders in the team's first year in the Big 12 in 2012. Wednesday's matchup will be the sixth time the teams have played in Lubbock.

First Meeting: 10/17/99 - Texas Tech wins 3-0 (15-6, 15-6, 15-5)
Last Meeting: 11/30/13 - Texas Tech wins 3-0 (25-21, 25-23, 25-18)



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