The Weekly Slate
At Iowa State
Wednesday, Nov. 26
Hilton Coliseum (Ames, Iowa), 7 p.m.
Vs. Colorado (Senior Day)
Friday, Nov. 28
Lloyd Noble Center, 1 p.m.
The Oklahoma volleyball team faces a struggling and depleted Iowa State squad in its final Big 12 road trip of the season. OU is 11-19 overall with 3-15 conference mark, while Iowa State is 11-18 and 3-15 in Big 12 play.
Iowa State Season Stats
Iowa State has lost five consecutive matches and nine of its last 10. The lone victory during that stretch came in four games against Texas (11/2). Iowa State is a much different team than the one that beat Texas six matches ago.
The Cyclones have been without the services of senior setter Lindsey Chapman. Chapman has not played in the last two matches and is not expected to return to the ISU lineup this season.
Last week Iowa State was also missing outside hitter Brittany Dalager, who leads the Cyclones with 3.57 digs per game and 2.9 kills per game. Dalager was out with an undisclosed injury but is expected to return to action this week. Dalager played setter when Chapman left the lineup against Kansas and turned in a team-high 14 assists. Dalager or freshman Katie Churm are expected to handle the setting duties when the Sooners visit Ames.
As a team Iowa State excels defensively. Dalager and libero Dana Koziol (3.42) both average three plus digs per game. In conference standings the Cyclones rank in the top nine in both digs and blocks per game as a team.
As For The Sooners
OU was unable to reproduce the effort they showed in pushing Missouri to five game on Nov. 15, as they lost both Big 12 matches last week. OU was swept by No. 5 Kansas State and struggled offensively in a three game loss at Texas.
The Sooners begin the final week of the season with a Wednesday visit to Iowa State before the Senior Day festivities against Colorado on Friday, Nov. 28. The Senior Day match will be played at the Lloyd Noble Center, a first for the OU volleyball team in the last two years.
OU loses three seniors who carried important roles this season. Christina Maynes will be the toughest to replace offensively. Maynes has averaged 3.08 kills per game while hitting .192 and collecting 2.57 digs per game since the start of conference play. Maynes is the fist Sooners to reach 600 kills and 600 digs during the rally scoring era and graduates with the OU career records in each category.
On the defensive end, OU head coach Kalani Mahi will have to replace libero Yvette Villanueva. The co-captain who transferred to OU prior to her junior season is third on the squad with 2.24 digs per game. Her progression at the position has been so significant that opposing teams game plan to serve and attack away from her.
Kelly McCarter’s was only at OU for a season but held a vital leadership role within the squad. The co-captain averaged 4.73 assists per game and 0.66 blocks per game. While sharing the setting duties with freshman Rachel Jackson, McCarter helped mentor the rookie during the transition to college volleyball.
Schmitt went a long way towards garnering the Big 12 Freshman of the Year award by posting better numbers than Mizzou’s Jessica Vander Kooi in every significant category on Nov. 15. Missouri won the match but the showdown between rookie standouts went to Schmitt. Below are each players stat lines from Nov. 15 match:
The two rookie outside hitters are fairly close in a number of categories. Schmitt leads all Big 12 freshman in kills and is second to Vander Kooi in digs. Below are their respective rankings among Big 12 true-freshmen.
|Big 12 Rank||Schmitt||Vander Kooi|
|Kills Per Game||1 (4.29)||3 (2.35)|
|Hitting Percentage*||7 (.141)||3 (.219)|
|Total Attacks||1 (1,280)||3 (657)|
|Aces Per Game||4 (0.27)||7 (0.22)|
|Blocks Per Game*||5 (0.35)||1 (0.78)|
|Digs Per Game||2 (2.72)||1 (2.83)|
*Rank of true-freshmen outside hitters only.
Filling In, Stepping Up
The one bright spot health wise for the Sooners is Jennifer Adams, who has returned from an ankle injury. Adams has been the primary offensive option at middle blocker and has averaged 1.79 kills per game while hitting at a .242 clip and averaging 0.93 blocks per game.
Since returning to the left side Christina Maynes has averaged 3.48 kills per game while hitting .195 and tallying a team-best 2.75 digs per game.
Kudos go out to freshman setter Anna Monsen who is filling in admirably at right side hitter. Monsen had a career-best 15 digs against Missouri. Monsen turned in a team-best .444 hitting percentage, on top of five kills and six digs against No. 5 K-State.
Cracking Big 12 Record books
The most impressive fact about the astonishing number of kills that Joanna Schmitt has recorded this season (468) is where her yearly total would rank at other Big 12 schools. With two matches remaining the freshman from Wisconsin is on pace to record 500 kills. Her season total would rank no lower than seventh all-time at any of the Big 12 schools. Her projected total ranks in the top five at every school except for Baylor and Nebraska. The mark would set the all-time single season record at Kansas, while ranking second at Colorado and Missouri.
Adams Set another Record
Jennifer Adams broke the single season rally scoring block assists record of 78 held by Candice Woods. Adams recorded three block assists before going down with an ankle injury against Kansas on Oct. 11. She now has 94 block assists on the season. She also owns the OU rally-scoring career record for block assists with 147 career block assists in just her second season. Adams surpassed Candice Woods (146) by registering one block assist against Texas last weekend.
Schmitt Breaks Another Record
After breaking the rally scoring single season kills record on Oct. 29, Joanna Schmitt added a second record to her expanding resume. She broke the rally scoring single season digs record of Logan Pierce (263 in 2001) with 10 digs at Kansas (11/12). Schmitt currently has 297 digs and 468 kills this season. With two matches remaining she is one pace to approach a 500 kill-300 dig season. Only five Sooners have accomplished the feat. Schmitt has taken 1,280 swings this season, which is the sixth best single season total in OU history. Her current kill total of 468 is the eighth best single season total in OU history.
Joanna Schmitt has gone to the well for double-doubles on 14 occasions this season. Schmitt’s total ranks as the fourth best mark and eighth best individual total in the Big 12. She leads all Big 12 freshman in double-doubles and has recorded a double-double in five of the last eight matches. Eight (57%) of her 14 double-doubles have come during conference play. Below is a list of the top individuals in the conference:
|1. Shen Danru, Mizzou||17|
|2. Jennifer Saleaumua, Nebraska||16|
|Tisha Schwartz, Baylor||16|
|Melissa Munsch, A&M||16|
|5. Nicole Carr, Colorado||15|
|Sarah Rome, Kansas||15|
|Kelly Johnson, Tech||15|
|8. Joanna Schmitt, OU||14|
|Laura Jones, A&M||14|
|10. Brittany Dalager, Iowa State||13|
|11. Mira Topic, Texas||12|
Maynes Breaks 600 Twice
OU senior Christina Maynes moved into first place on the OU career rally scoring digs list with 15 digs in a double-double effort at Baylor (10/1). She passed 2002 graduate Denise Griffin, who had 461 and stands alone at the top with 606. Maynes took over sole possession on the OU career rally scoring kills list after recording 15 kills during Cougar Challenge play (8/29-30). She now has 636 kills and is the first and only Sooner to surpass the mark in either category since the inception of rally scoring rules.
Assaulting the Record Book
In 30 career matches Joanna Schmitt has led OU in total attacks 25 times, kills 25 times and digs 11 times. With two matches remaining she already owns the OU rally scoring kills record with a current total of 468. She became the first Sooner in the rally scoring era (2001) to record 400 kills in a season and just the 13th player in OU history to top 400 kills in a single season. Schmitt is on pace to record 500 kills this season, which would be the sixth best single-season total in OU volleyball history, regardless of scoring system. The favorite target of OU’s setters is on pace to take1,365 swings this year, a mark that would rank fifth in OU history. At her current pace Schmitt will easily top 400 kills and 300 digs. Only six players in OU history have turned in 400 kills and 300 digs in a single season, while only five Sooners have ever recorded a 500-300 season. She has 293 digs, which is also a rally scoring record, breaking the previous mark of Logan Pierce (263). Schmitt’s 468 kills is the eighth best single season total in OU history. She is currently sixth on the OU all-time single season list with 1,249 total attacks.