No. 16 Volleyball Faces No. 15 Colorado State

Athletics Communications
By Athletics Communications
University of Oklahoma
AUGUST 28, 2011
 No. 15 Colorado State (3-0) at No. 16 Oklahoma (3-0)
 Monday, August 28 | 7 p.m. CT
 Location  Norman, Okla. | McCasland Field House
 Tickets  Tickets OU Athletics Ticket Office
 Internet  All-Access VideoLive Webcast | Stats GameTracker
 Online   Match NotesMedia Guide | Roster | Twitter
 Promotions  Eat Cane's (OU Students)

NORMAN, Okla. - Fresh off the Nike Invitational title, the 16th-ranked University of Oklahoma volleyball team returns to action Monday evening hosting 15th-ranked Colorado State. First serve is set for 7 p.m. CT inside McCasland Field House. The Sooners (3-0) are facing their first non-conference ranked opponent at home since playing Cal Poly on Aug. 30, 2008.

Oklahoma is ranked 16th in the preseason American Volleyball Coaches Association poll, its highest preseason ranking ever. The ranking is the highest for OU since finishing the 2006 season at a program-best No. 12 in the final poll. ... Oklahoma returns 10 letterwinners from last season's 23-11 team that finished third in the Big 12 (13-7) ... The Sooners return five position starters and libero and welcome five newcomers ... OU was selected to finish second in the Big 12 Conference this year in a vote by the league's coaches the conference office. The Sooners tied Iowa State with 53 points. Texas garnered 63 points to finish first.

 Player to Watch: Grace Whitley

A product of Kansas City, Mo., Grace Whitley led Bishop Miege High School to back-to-back state titles in 2010 and 2009. She earned second team All-Eastern Kansas League as a senior and junior. She hit .393 as a senior, recording 231 kills, 24 service aces and 142 total blocks. Whitley earned first team all-state honors as a junior and was named to the All-Sun team and honorable mention all-metro.

Whitley also played club volleyball for the KC Power. The team won the 2009 national championship, an event where she earned the tournament’s most valuable player honors.

Grace Whitley

Seniors Brianne Barker and Suzy Boulavsky and sophomore Sallie McLaurin were named Preseason All-Big 12 ... Carlee Roethlisberger joined the volleyball team this year after playing for the women's basketball team the last four years ... Barker was a member of the USA Volleyball A2 Women's National Team this summer. McLaurin was a member of the U.S. Women's Junior National Team. Oklahoma head coach Santiago Restrepo was the head coach for the A2 Women's Junior National Team.

Colorado State (3-0) won the Arkansas Invitational this past weekend, sweeping past host Arkansas, McNeese State and Middle Tennessee. The Rams were led by senior opposite hitter Katelyn Steffan, who earned the tournament’s most valuable player honors. Juniors Dana Cranston, Izzy Gaulia and Megan Plourde were named to the all-tournament team. The trip is a homecoming for Colorado State head coach Tom Hilbert, a 1984 OU graduate. Colorado State leads the all-time series with OU 5-1. Oklahoma took the last meeting in five sets back on Sept. 21, 1991.



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