Full set of game notes (22 pages) - pdf
The Week Ahead
• Fresh off an opening week of the season in which the Hornets went 3-0 and won the Maverick Classic championship, Sacramento State is back for three more matches this week.
• The Hornets will play in the two-day, four-team Rebel Challenge in Las Vegas. Sacramento State will play three times at the tournament, including Friday against both host UNLV at 10 a.m. and Cal State Northridge at 5 p.m. The Hornets will also play Saturday vs. Hofstra at 11:30 a.m.
• Sacramento State's opponents at this week's tournament are a combined 8-2. Hofstra (4-0) won the Black Knights Invitational in West Point, N.Y., over the weekend while UNLV (3-0) won its UNLV Invitational, which included sweeps of UC Santa Barbara and New Mexico State. Cal State Northridge is currently 1-2 with one of those losses coming in five sets to Pepperdine.
• The Hornets are 3-0 for the first time since 2013, and just the second time in the last nine years.
• Dating back to the beginning of last season, Sacramento State is 29-7 and has been taken to five sets just three times over that span. The Hornets finished the 2015 season at 26-7.
• Sacramento State had three players named all-tournament - libero Lexie Skalbeck, setter Kennedy Kurtz and outside hitter Shannon Boyle. Skalbeck was also named the Big Sky Conference's first-ever defensive player of the week. The league adopted a defensive weekly honor this year.
• Over the last 40 years, Sacramento State has a 950-427 record (.690 winning percentage).
This Week's Multimedia Options
• UNLV is not offering online video this week, but there will be live stats for each contest.
• Multimedia options (video, live stats, etc.) can be accessed to the right of each match on the volleyball schedule at www.hornetsports.com.
• Free live video in HD will be offered for every home match this season via www.WatchBigSky.com. In addition, free video will be offered for every road match played in a Big Sky Conference venue.
Coming Off A 26-Win Season
• Last year, Sacramento State posted a 26-7 overall record, a 12-4 mark in the Big Sky, an 11-1 record at home, 8-5 on the road and 7-1 on neutral floors.
• The Hornets were taken to five sets just twice all year, had an 18-win improvement from the previous season, recorded a 12-match winning streak, never lost more than two matches in a row, and finished 78th out of 334 Div. I teams in the NCAA's final RPI report.
• The Hornets' .256 hitting percentage was the best single-season mark since 1995 and second best in the Div. I era (1991-pres.). Among the Big Sky's 12 teams, Sacramento State finished first in kills per set (14.08) and assists per set (12.95), second in hitting percentage (.256) and aces per set (1.66), and third in digs per set (15.66).
• The Hornets won their Big Sky Tournament quarterfinal match over Northern Colorado (3-1), but fell in the semis to tournament host and eventual champion Northern Arizona (3-0).
• The Hornets welcome back 13 players from last year, including four starters and the team's libero. The team, however, will have to compensate for the losses of outside hitters Lauren Kissell and Sloan Lovett, who ranked fourth and sixth, respectively, in the Big Sky in kills per set.
Injury Bug Already Biting
• Just three matches into the season, a key Hornet has already suffered an injury.
• Senior Madeline Cannon, who made the switch from middle blocker a year ago to rightside hitter this season, will miss this week's matches with injury.
• Cannon is a big part of the Hornet offense as she had at least 12 kills in all three matches last week. She is currently averaging 3.08 kills, 3.75 points and a team-best 1.08 blocks per set.
• Despite the 26-win season a year ago, the Hornets had four players miss significant time on the court due to injuries in 2015.
Boyle Is Back
• After missing 18 matches last year with a back injury, hard-hitting outside hitter Shannon Boyle made an impressive return last week.
• Not only was Boyle named all-tournament, she set her career high in kills twice, notching a career-best 19 vs. Sam Houston State and improving that mark to 20 kills at UT Arlington.
• For good measure, she also set her career high with 20 digs against Sam Houston State.
• Boyle, who hammers balls at a high velocity and often leaves bruises on defenders arms, averaged 4.10 kills, 4.40 points and 3.10 digs per set while hitting .243 last week.
• For efforts, she was also named the Sacramento State Student-Athlete of the Week on Monday.
• In a series which dates back to 1981, the Hornets are 25-22 all-time vs. CSUN; 2-0 all-time vs. UNLV with the last matchup coming in 2003; 4-0 against Hofstra with the last meeting in 1995.
• This year's team captains are senior middle Courtney Dietrich and junior setter Kennedy Kurtz.
• Senior libero Lexie Skalbeck was named the Big Sky's Defensive Player of the Week after averaging 5.00 digs per set at the Maverick Classic. Skalbeck has improved upon her digs per set average every year of her career, from 1.52 as a freshman, 3.62 as a sophomore and 4.52 a year ago.
• Kurtz had at least 50 assists in two matches last week and now has 2,681 career assists just three matches into her junior year. In addition, she is hitting .307 for her career with 119 kills.
• Outside hitter Morgan Stanley could have easily been named all-tournament last week as she averaged 4.09 kills, 4.41 points and 2.73 digs per set. That included 21 kills over four sets at UT Arlington. In her fourth season, she now has 844 career kills and 768 digs.
• Dietrich, who missed the final seven matches a year ago with a knee injury, is hitting a team-best .485. Dating back to last season, over her last six matches played, she is hitting a ridiculous .608 with 34 kills and just three errors in 51 swings. She has hit at least .400 in each match this year.
• Though the Hornet offense was proficient last week (notching 14.50 kps and a .256 hitting percentage), it was the defense that was just as impressive. Sacramento State averaged 17.75 digs per set while limiting the opposition to a .111 hitting percentage and just 9.67 kills per set.
March 24, 2017 VOLLEYBALL TO PLAY FIVE MATCHES IN CHINA IN EARLY JUNE
February 28, 2017 KURTZ AND BOYLE TO ATTEND THE WOMEN’S NATIONAL TEAM OPEN TRYOUTS
January 30, 2017 HELP SUPPORT VOLLEYBALL'S SUMMER TRIP TO CHINA
November 15, 2016 VOLLEYBALL BEGINS BIG SKY TOURNAMENT ON THURSDAY VS. EASTERN WASHINGTON
October 31, 2016 CANNON AND SKALBECK SWEEP BIG SKY VOLLEYBALL WEEKLY AWARDS
October 26, 2016 VOLLEYBALL CONTINUES HOMESTAND; LOOKS TO IMPROVE HOME WINNING STREAK
October 20, 2016 FINALLY BACK AT HOME, VOLLEYBALL SWEEPS PAST IDAHO
October 8, 2016 VOLLEYBALL REMAINS HOT ON THE ROAD, BEATS NORTHERN COLORADO, 3-1
September 29, 2016 VOLLEYBALL HOSTS MONTANA TONIGHT, TRAVELS TO PORTLAND STATE ON SATURDAY
September 29, 2016 VOLLEYBALL NOW 3-0 IN THE BIG SKY AFTER HOME SWEEP OF MONTANA
September 26, 2016 KURTZ NAMED THE BIG SKY’S VOLLEYBALL OFFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK
September 24, 2016 VOLLEYBALL NOW 2-0 IN THE BIG SKY AFTER 3-2 ROAD WIN AT IDAHO STATE
September 23, 2016 VOLLEYBALL OPENS CONFERENCE PLAY WITH 3-1 ROAD WIN AT WEBER STATE
September 21, 2016 VOLLEYBALL BEGINS CONFERENCE PLAY THIS WEEK ON THE ROAD
September 17, 2016 VOLLEYBALL SWEEPS SECOND ROUND MATCHUP OVER GRAND CANYON, 3-0
September 17, 2016 VOLLEYBALL FALLS TO EVENTUAL TOURNAMENT CHAMPION CAL POLY
September 16, 2016 VOLLEYBALL FALLS IN FOUR TO NEVADA IN 1ST ROUND OF SACRAMENTO STATE INVITE
September 13, 2016 VOLLEYBALL HOSTS UC DAVIS TONIGHT, TOURNAMENT ON FRIDAY & SATURDAY
September 13, 2016 VOLLEYBALL FALLS IN HOME OPENER TO UC DAVIS
September 10, 2016 VOLLEYBALL CONCLUDES 10-MATCH ROAD TRIP WITH CONVINCING SWEEP OF UTEP
September 9, 2016 VOLLEYBALL DROPS ANOTHER CLOSE MATCH, FALLS IN FIVE TO NEW MEXICO STATE
September 9, 2016 VOLLEYBALL FALLS TO ARIZONA IN 2ND ROUND OF LAS CRUCES TOURNAMENT
September 8, 2016 VOLLEYBALL WRAPS UP 10-MATCH ROAD TRIP THIS WEEK
September 6, 2016 VOLLEYBALL PICKS UP ROAD WIN, SWEEPS CSU BAKERSFIELD
September 3, 2016 VOLLEYBALL DROPS THREE 2-POINT SETS IN 3-1 LOSS TO HOFSTRA
September 2, 2016 VOLLEYBALL SUFFERS FIRST LOSS OF THE YEAR, FALLS AT UNLV, 3-1
September 2, 2016 VOLLEYBALL FALLS IN 2ND ROUND OF VEGAS TOURNAMENT TO CSUN
September 1, 2016 VOLLEYBALL TAKES 3-0 RECORD TO TOURNAMENT IN VEGAS
August 29, 2016 SKALBECK NAMED THE BIG SKY’S DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK
August 23, 2016 VOLLEYBALL OPENS THE 2016 SEASON THIS FRIDAY IN ARLINGTON
August 23, 2016 VOLLEYBALL’S SPAGHETTI FEED FUNDRAISER GENERATES OVER $15,000
August 18, 2016 VOLLEYBALL ALUMNI GAME AND SPAGHETTI FEED ON TAP FOR SATURDAY
May 27, 2016 VOLLEYBALL RELEASES ITS 2016 SCHEDULE