Nov. 11, 2016
TCU Game Notes
LAWRENCE, Kan. - After a bye on Wednesday, the TCU volleyball team will hit the road for one of the final times this season to face No. 4 Kansas on Saturday, Nov. 12 at 4 p.m., at the Horejsi Family Athletics Center in Lawrence, Kan.
The match between the Horned Frogs (11-11, 4-8 Big 12) and the Jayhawks (22-2, 11-1 Big 12) will air live on ESPN3 or WatchESPN.com with Leif Lisec and Jill Hall on the call.
-The 2016 season marks the 21st season in the history of the TCU Volleyball program
-This season also marks the second under the helm of alumni and Director of Volleyball Jill (Pape) Kramer
-Kramer (1996-99) was the first scholarship volleyball player on the inaugural team in 1996 and still holds the single-season and career school records in kills and total attacks
-TCU returns 10 letterwinners and five starters from a season ago and also welcome nine newcomers, including three transfers
-91% of the offense returns for the 2016 season along with 95% of the defense at the net in blocking
-The squad includes seven seniors this season including All-American Ashley Smith and AVCA All-Southwest Region honorees Regan McGuire and Natalie Gower
-Smith, who has led the team in kills per set the last three seasons, was named to the Preseason All-Big 12 team for the second straight season
-Two other key returners are Sarita Mikals and Jillian Bergeson who spent their springs honing their skills on the beach courts
-The Frogs have great offensive depth which means a 6-2 will be in play again with Kaylee Smith and Lamprini Konstantinidou guiding the offense
-TCU brought in a stud of a freshmen class which was ranked for the first time in program history by Prepvolleyball.com by coming in at No. 15
-In its final preseason match of the season, TCU downed No. 8 North Carolina with the win marking the second top-10 win in program history and second straight season the team has achieved that feat
-In the win over Iowa State, Mikals became the sixth player in program history and the first under the helm of Kramer to score a triple-double with 10 kills, 10 digs and 10 blocks
-TCU has out-block their opponents in 17 of the 22 matches played and the team has recorded double-digit blocks in eight matches
-Three school records have fallen this season with Sarita Mikals breaking the single-match record in digs (36-9/2/16 at Duke), while Natalie Gower recently topped the single-match record in blocks (15-10/1/16 vs. Oklahoma). The team also finished with 23.5 blocks against the Sooners for a new program best in total team blocks.
-TCU is looking to continue its winning ways after a 3-0 sweep of Kansas State last Saturday
Last Time Out: Kansas State
-A dominant performance on both the offensive and defensive side led the TCU volleyball team to a 3-0 (25-20, 25-12, 25-22) sweep of Kansas State
-The win for the Horned Frogs was its second this season over an opponent ranked inside the top-15 of the RPI as TCU recorded a .311 hitting clip and 10 total blocks in the victory over the Wildcats
-Strong runs in the beginning of the opening two sets were enough to easily give TCU the sets, while they had to battle back in the final set to secure the sweep. The Frogs held Kansas State to its second lowest hitting percentage of the season at .137 while also limiting their offense to 35 kills and one service ace.
-Ashleigh Martin led the team with 13 kills while also putting up four total blocks in the match.
-Jillian Bergeson donned the libero jersey for the first time in her TCU career and finished with a team-best 19 digs.
Last Time We Met: Oct. 15 vs Kansas
-In the final home match of the first half of Big 12 play, the TCU volleyball team suffered a 3-0 (25-12, 25-19, 25-22) setback to No. 6 Kansas on Saturday, Oct. 15
-In front of the team's fifth straight sellout of the season, the Horned Frogs struggled to get a rhythm offensively as the Jayhawks held TCU to its lowest hitting percentage of the season at .056 and out-blocked the Frogs with 12 total in the match.
-Natalie Gower led the team offensively with 7 total kills in the match and no errors for a .412 hitting clip. Gower also led the team defensively at the net along with Anna Walsh with three total blocks each. Ashley Smith and Sarita Mikals each picked up double-digit digs with 12 and 14, respectively.
Scouting the Opponent: #4 Kansas
-Kansas is sitting at the top of conference action with an 11-1 record and are coming off two road wins last week
-Ranked No. 4 nationally, the Jayhawks are paced by Kelsie Payne who is putting down 4.08 kills per set at a .320 hitting clip to go along with 1.01 blocks per set
-Madison Rigdon is good for 3.62 kills per set for Kansas while also helping from the backrow with 2.26 digs per set
-Ainise Havili is dishing out the offense with 10.79 assists per set while also helping the team to one of the league's best hitting percentages at .240
-From the backrow, Cassie Wait is at the top of the conference with 5.18 digs per set so far this season, while Havili is good for 2.59 digs per set