Red River Volleyball Rematch Saturday

Athletics Communications
By Athletics Communications
University of Oklahoma
NOVEMBER 20, 2003

The Weekly Slate

Vs. No. 5 Kansas State
Wednesday, Nov. 19
Howard McCasland Field House L, 3-0

At Texas
Saturday, Nov. 22
Gregory Gymnasium 7p.m.

The Lowdown
The Oklahoma volleyball team (11-18, 3-14 Big 12) heads to Austin, Texas, Saturday for a conference showdown with the Texas Longhorns.  The match is scheduled for a 7p.m. start from Gregory Gymnasium.  The Sooners aim to avenge their home-opening loss to the Longhorns on Sept.24.

Oklahoma Stats      Texas Stats      Gameday Live Stats

Like OU, which lost in three games to No. 5 Kansas State, Texas struggled in its first Big 12 game of the week.  Texas was swept by Colorado (32-30, 30-24, 32-30) at Gregory Gymnasium Wednesday night.   Texas is just 7-10 and in seventh place in conference, one year after finishing fourth in the league with a 13-7 finish. 

The Longhorns, who have lost six of their last eight, are led by explosive outsides Bethany Howden and Mira Topic.  Howden is second in the Big 12, two above OU freshman Joanna Schmitt, in kills per game with a 4.78 average.  Right behind Howden in the Big 12 standings is junior Mira Topic who averages 4.46 kills per game.  Topic leads the Big 12 with 0.52 aces per game.

Heading up the setting duties for UT head coach Jerritt Elliott is freshman Jenny Andrew who is averaging 11.96 assists per game, which is fourth best in the conference.  

As for the Sooners
OU’s five game loss against Missouri, which was  followed by a sweep against No. 5 Kansas State, was significant for a number of reasons.  OU rebounded from one of its poorest outings of the year against Kansas (11/12) and nearly knocked off the Tigers.  The Sooners set a number of records in defeat.

Senior Christina Maynes set an rally scoring record with 30 kills and became the first Sooner to accomplish the feat under Mahi.  The last Sooner to reach 30 kills was Patrice Arrington during the 1997 season.  Maynes also broke the rally scoring record for total attacks with 69. 

Freshman Joanna Schmitt tied the record for digs with 20.  Freshman Rachel Jackson tied her own single match assists mark with 56 helpers.

As for team records, OU’s kills (75), total attacks (209), assists (72) and digs (90) were rally scoring bests.

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.  Missouri won the match but the showdown between rookie standouts went to Schmitt.   Below are each players stat lines from Saturday’s (11/15) match.

Kills Hitting % Aces Digs Blocks
24 .268 2 20 4
Vander Kooi
9 .049 1 14 1

Filling In, Stepping Up
The injuries keep piling up for OU.  The latest to head to the disabled list are Keri Coats and Jennifer Mosso.  Both have been sidelined for the last three matches and are out indefinitely with ankle injuries.

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.

Coats, who hasn’t played middle since high school, was exceptional after switching positions.  Excluding the Nebraska match, when Coats struggled, she averaged 1.95 kills per game while hitting .293 and collecting 1.10 blocks per game.

After playing 11 matches at defensive specialist OU head coach Kalani Mahi moved Maynes back to outside hitter.  Since returning to the left side she has averaged 3.53 kills per game while hitting .200 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 The Big 12 Record Books
The most impressive fact about the astonishing number of kills that Joanna Schmitt has recorded this season (459) is where her yearly total would rank at other Big 12 schools.  With three matches remaining the freshman from Wisconsin is on pace to record 506 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.

Quick Hits
  Joanna Schmitt’s 20-20 (24 kills, 20 digs) against Missouri was a first during the Kalani Mahi era.  Schmittt was the first Sooner to accomplish the feat since 1997, when Melissa Peterson had 27 kills and 28 digs against Texas Tech on Oct 18, 1997.   

-  OU had not taken a single game from ranked conference opponent since 1999 (Kansas State) before pushing  No. 21 Texas A&M four games on Saturday (11/8).  OU took a game from No. 19 Washington State in the Cougar Classic, which was the first time they accomplished the feat against a non-conference opponent since 1998. 

 -  OU hit above. 200 eight times last season.  The Sooners have hit above .200, 13 times this season and in 13 of the last 25 contests, including both matches with Baylor.  OU has hit above .200 five times since the beginning of conference play. OU is 8-4 when it hits above .200 and 2-3 when they reach the mark in conference this season.

 -  OU is one win shy of equaling its conference win total (4) from 2002 and doubling its season win total (6) from last season.

Adams Ties Career Assists Mark
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 93 block assists on the season.  She also currently owns a share of the OU rally-scoring career record block assists record with 146 career block assists in just her second season at OU.  She tied with Candice Woods and barring an injury, should easily surpass her in the next three matches.

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 on Wednesday night against Kansas.  Schmitt currently has 291 digs and 459 kills this season.  With five matches remaining she is one pace to approach a 500 kill-300 dig season.  Only five Sooners have accomplished the feat.  Schmitt has  taken 1,249 swings this season, which is the seventh best mark in OU history.  Her current kill total of 459 is the 10th best single season total in OU history.|

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 601.  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 628 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 29 career matches Joanna Schmitt has led OU in total attacks 24 times, kills 24 times and digs 11 times.  With three matches remaining she already owns the OU rally scoring kills record with a current total of 459.  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 506 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 take 1,387 swings this year, a mark that would tie for third 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 459 kills is the 10th best single season total (one away from No. 9) in OU history.  She is currently seventh on the OU all-time single season list with 1,249 total attacks.

Many Signs Of Improvement
OU is projected to easily top all of its numbers from last season.  OU’s averages are up in every category and the improvement has been significant in every area except digs.  The biggest improvement has come in kills, where OU averaged 12.68 in 2002 and is up nearly one kill per game at 13.54.  OU has already topped its kill total from last season (1176) with 1412 in 2003 and is projected to best last season by 422.





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