(click images for more info)
(7:00 p.m. ET)
Iowa comes to Rec Hall tonight. Come on out and watch the #6-ranked Nittany Lions face off against the red-hot Iowa Hawkeyes. When Penn State visited Iowa on October 4th (the B1G debut of Haleigh Washington) the Nittany Lions came home with a sweep — (25-15, 25-14, 25-11). In that match, Penn State was led by6-2 Sr/ MH Nia Grant (11 kills), junior Megan Courtney (11 kills) and freshman Ali Frantti (10 kills).
We have a very short Q&A with Talking Head (one of each) and a Stat Joust, below.
Q&A with Talking Head
DigNittany: Iowa, which just knocked off Purdue gor its fourth consecutive win in the B1G, visits Rec Hall tonight. Any thoughts on the Hawkeyes and the job their new head coach, Bond Shymansky, is doing?
Talking Head: Iowa had some good athletes on their team last year and with the huge addition of Coach Shymansky, these athletes are playing hard and beginning to believe. The mind is a powerful tool and clearly this team is moving in a positive direction. They certainly caught Purdue at the right time (Purdue star 6-4 Jr. Annie Drews was out with an injury) and made the most of it. Adding coaches like Bond (at Iowa) and our friend Steve Aird (at Maryland) is so crucial to the continued success and future of women’s volleyball in the B1G.
Here are the team stats comparing Penn State and tonight’s opponent — Iowa — along with Saturday night’s opponent — Minnesota. A few stats that jump out:
- Penn State’s Net Attack % (team attack % minus opponents’ attack %) is +.210 compared to Minnesota’s Net Attack % of +.040 and Iowa’s Net Attack % of -.005.
- Penn State is slowly but surely moving up the team blocking chart, now sitting in a tie for 5th with Purdue, at 2.50 blocks/set (Illinois leads at 2.88 blocks/set).
- Led by Micha Hancock, Penn State continues to lead in service aces by a wide margin (1.98 aces/set, with Michigan State in 2nd with 1.33 aces/set).
We cheated a bit here, including attack % and blocking stats for 6-3 Fr. MH Haleigh Washington, even though she doesn’t meet the B1G’s minimum of having played in 50% of her team’s sets (she has played in 41; Penn State has played 89). We are pretty confident that Haleigh will meet that standard within the next four matches, so we wanted to see where she would stand if she had met it as of today. Note that there may be other players in the same situation as Haleigh who would rank above her (though we don’t think so), but we didn’t research that. A few stats jump out:
- Including Washington, Penn State has four of the top 13 individual attack percentages.
- Micha Hancock isn’t Penn State’s only weapon from the service line: Dom Gonzalez and Ali Frantti have both quietly moved into the top 15 in the B1G.
- Daly Santana of Minnesota can hurt you in a lot of ways. She ranks #4 in service aces/set and #3 in points/set.
- Haleigh Washington would rank #3 in blocks/set if she met the B1G’s minimum of having played in 50% of her team’s sets.
- Minnesota’s Tapp Twins are very good blockers, ranking #2 and #5.
- Dom Gonzalez continues to rank near the top of the B1G in digs/set (currently #11).
- Iowa has two pretty good servers in Dietz and Klostermann.
- Jousting at the Bristol Renaissance Faire. By Easyv at en.wikipedia. This work has been released into the public domain by its author, Easyv at the wikipedia project. This applies worldwide. In case this is not legally possible, Easyv grants anyone the right to use this work for any purpose, without any conditions, unless such conditions are required by law.