MAC Volleyball Weekly Release

Updated 9/13/2010
Upcoming Schedule

Tuesday, September 14
Ball State at IPFW 7:00 PM
Bowling Green vs. Wright State 7:00 PM
Kent State at Youngstown State 7:00 PM
Northern Illinois vs. Wisconsin TBA

Friday, September 17
Buffalo vs. Hofstra 10:00 AM
Ohio vs. UAB Noon
Bowling Green vs. St. Francis (Pa.) 1:00 PM
Buffalo vs. Air Force 2:30 PM
Central Michigan vs. Radford 4:30 PM
Kent State vs. Duquesne 6:00 PM
Ohio vs. Texas-San Antonio 6:00 PM
Western Michigan vs. Northeastern 6:00 PM
Akron at Colgate 6:30 PM
Bowling Green at Pittsburgh 7:00 PM
Eastern Michigan at Davidson 7:00 PM
Miami vs. DePaul 7:00 PM
Toledo at Michigan State 7:00 PM
Ball State at North Carolina 7:30 PM

Saturday, September 18
Akron vs. Cornell 10:00 AM
Eastern Michigan vs. Boise State 10:00 AM
Western Michigan at Seton Hall 10:00 AM
Central Michigan vs. North Florida 10:30 AM
Miami vs. Illinois State 10:30 AM
Ball State vs. Temple 11:00 AM
Bowling Green vs. Eastern Illinois 11:00 AM
Kent State vs. Louisiana Monroe Noon
Western Michigan vs. UMBC 12:30 PM
Northern Illinois vs. Youngstown State 2:00 PM
Ohio at TCU 2:00 PM
Akron vs. Connecticut 4:00 PM
Eastern Michigan vs. High Point 4:30 PM
Bowling Green vs. Robert Morris 5:00 PM
Ball State vs. Appalachian State 5:30 PM
Kent State vs. Syracuse 7:00 PM
Central Michigan at College of Charleston 7:30 PM
Miami vs. Indiana 7:30 PM

Sunday, September 19
Buffalo at Army Noon
Buffalo vs. Bryant 5:00 PM
Northern Illinois vs. Iowa 4:00 PM


East Division Offensive Player of the Week
Abby Niekamp, Buffalo, Jr., MB, Celina, OH/Marion Local
Niekamp was named to the All-Tournament team at the Blue and White Classic finishing with 35 kills on the week. Niekamp was extremely efficent as she hit .500 in the four matches, recording just seven total errors on 56 swings. Niekamp had 12 kills twice on the week, against Binghamton and St. John's. Niekamp also added eight total blocks on the week.

West Division Offensive Player of the Week
Rachel Iaquaniello, Eastern Michigan, So., OH, Plymouth, Mich.-Dearborn Divine Child

Sophomore Rachel Iaquaniello was named the Spartan Invitational MVP as the Eagles continued to excel with a 10-1 start to the season. The Plymouth, Mich. native averaged 4.53 kills, 2.13 digs and 4.93 points per set while hitting a solid .253 in four matches from the outside. Iaquaniello's best performance of the week came in the finale against Big Ten Conference foe Michigan State, Sept. 11, when she blasted 22 kills, pulled up eight digs and blocked a pair of balls in the EMU victory. She also chipped in ad double-double with 17 kills and 10 digs in the lone setback to Clemson, Sept. 11. Iaquaniello, who was not yet one year old the last time EMU defeated MSU, has now been named the Tournament MVP at two of three invitationals that Eastern has played in during the 2010 season.

East Division Defensive Player of the Week
Kristin Bignell , Buffalo, Sr., MB/RS, Drayton, Ontario/Norwell District

Krstin Bignell led the way with 17 total blocks on the week, including a career-high 13 blocks against St. John's. Bignell's 11 block assists against the Red Storm are were just two off the school record for block assists in a four-set match. Bignell was just as impressive offensively, as she hit .354 on the week with 24 kills.

West Division Defensive Player of the Week
Haley Stein, Eastern Michigan, Jr., L, Carleton, Mich.-Monroe St. Mary's Catholic Central
Junior Haley Stein was named to the All-Tournament Team at the Spartan Invitational as the Eagles finished with a 2-1 record to claim its third-straight championship. Stein averaged 5.47 digs per set in four matches on the week. Stein's best match came against Michigan State when she pulled up a season-high 27 digs while adding three service aces on 16 serves. Stein also chipped in 23 digs against Clemson after posting 16 versus Oakland and Eastern Illinois.

West Division Team Notebooks

-- With her season-high 28 digs versus Wright State, senior libero Alyssa Rio climbed into third in program history with 1,585 career digs. The effort also marks the 76 match she has tallied double-figure digs in her career and the 35th time she has tallied 20-or-more digs in a match. While Ball State saw both its set winning streak and match winning streak come to an end at Wright State, the Cardinals' 21-straight set wins to open the season was tied as the second-longest streak in program history, while the seven straight wins was the second-best season-opening winning streak in program history. In addition, the 21-straight set wins was the best set winning streak to open a season in program history.

-- The Chippewas close out the early portion of their non-conference play at the College of Charleston Invitational this weekend, after having their four-match win streak snapped on Saturday. Returning All-MAC talents Lauren Krupsky and Kaitlyn Schultz are in midseason form already this season. Krupsky averaged 4.36 kills last week and hit .298 and Schultz averaged 2.36 kills and hit .355 in a dominating weekend. CMU will face Radford on Friday, College of Charleston and North Florida on Saturday.

-- EMU SHOCKS MICHIGAN STATE: Three Eagles reached double figures in kills, as the Eastern Michigan University volleyball team outlasted Michigan State University, 3-2 (25-22, 23-25, 16-25, 25-21, 15-10), to capture the Spartan Invitational championship Saturday, Sept. 11, at Jenison Field House. Sophomore outside hitter Rachel Iaquaniello (Plymouth, Mich.-Dearborn Divine Child) was named the tournament MVP with juniors Ashley Mason (Eastlake, Ohio-Lake Catholic) and Haley Stein (Carleton, Mich.-Monroe St. Mary's Catholic Central) garnering All-Tournament accolades. STREAKS COME TO AN END: The Eagles' victory snapped MSU's recent domination in the series, with the Spartans now holding a 20-8 edge in the all-time series. Prior to Saturday's victory, Eastern had lost six consecutive matches to MSU dating back to the 1993 season. EMU's last win occurred nearly 19 years ago when the then-Hurons recorded a 3-1 victory at venerable Bowen Field House, Sept. 23, 1992. The victory moves the Eagles to 10-1 on the season, the program's best 11-match record since the 2003 campaign. Additionally, the win was the first by EMU over a Big Ten Conference foe since Sept. 14, 2002, when the Eagles upended Iowa, 3-1, at the Western Illinois Tournament.

-- Over the weekend, the Huskies extended their best start in program history by improving to 11-0 after winning three matches to claim the Elon Classic, the team's third invitational first place finish in as many weekends ... Freshman outside hitter Lauren Wicinski paced the team at the Elon Classic with team-highs of 44 points (4.40/set) and 38 kills (3.80/set), along with 22 digs (2.20/set) and five aces (0.50/set) ... Senior libero Maddie Hughes anchored the back row totaling 46 digs (4.60/set) and only one reception error in 47 attempts in the three matches ... In every match this season, NIU has held an edge over its opponents in hitting percentage (.297-.160), kills (533-371), digs (531-423), and aces (93-24) ... Of the 37 sets this season, NIU has won 33 ... During the program's longest winning streak since 2001, NIU has had eight three-set wins, two four-set wins, and one five-set win.

-- Toledo will host Michigan State in its lone match this week. The Spartans will be the third Big Ten school the Rockets will face this season. UT defeated No. 12 Michigan, 3-2, and became the first team to hand Wisconsin a loss in a set in its 3-1 setback to the Badgers. Freshman OH Jordan Kielty saw her first action of the season in the front row against Wisconsin and tallied a team-high 14 kills and .244 hitting mark in the contest.

-- Senior Allyson Doyle compiled 15 kills at the Ameritas Players Challenge and is eight kills away from reaching 1,000 career kills at Western Michigan. She would be only the 18th Bronco to reach that milestone. Freshman libero Lena Oliver led Western Michigan with 5.00 digs per set in Nebraska and extended her streak to 10 consecutive matches with 10 or more digs. Freshman outside hitter Taylor Richard played a full six rotations for the first time against #20 Dayton and finished with a career high eight kills. She had one kill entering the weekend.

East Division Team Notebooks

-- The University of Akron Zips went 2-1 in the second annual Akron Invitational. Taking a tough tournament opening loss to Appalachian State, Akron rebounded for a strong 3-2 win over Indiana State followed by a impressive 3-0 victory over St. Francis (Pa.) to wrap up the tournament. The Zips bested their opponents in every category led by sophomore Morgan Kuhn who grabbed 100 assists, 34 digs and six kills on the weekend. Most impressively, Kuhn posted 50 assists and 20 digs, both career highs in Akron's five set win over ISU. Akron will travel to its final tournament before conference season begins next weekend (Sept. 17-18) participating in the Colgate Invitational. The Zips will face host Colgate, Cornell and Connecticut in the event.

-- Bowling Green went 1-2 hosting the Best Western Falcon Plaza Invitational this weekend ... The Falcons defeated Cornell in three sets before losing to IPFW and Oakland ... All of BGSU's first nine matches have gone three sets, the second-longest streak of sweeps in program history and the longest to start a season ... Noelle Spitler was named to the all-tournament team after posting 23 kills, a .271 attack percentage, and a team-best seven blocks on the weekend ... Spitler had 11 kills, five digs and five blocks in the team's win over Cornell ... Freshman libero Ashley Dunn had her first career 20-dig match with exactly 20 against Cornell.

-- UB won its second straight in season tournaent this past weekend, capturing the Blue and White Classic. Setter Lindsey Schlegel was named MVP, while Abby Niekamp and Kristin Bignell were both named to the all-tournament team. The Bulls had 16 total team blocks in the win over St. John's, including 13 total blocks from Kristin Bignell. Bignell had 11 block assists, just two off the school record for block assists in a four-set match.

-- The Flashes travel to Youngstown State Tuesday (Sept. 14) before hosting the Kent State/Mizuno Open this weekend (Sept. 17-18) at the M.A.C. Center.

-- Miami went 3-1 on the week, including a second place showing at the Michigan/adidas Invitational. Michele Metzler is closing in on the top 10 of block assists for her career. She now has 269 block assists and needs 38 more to reach 307 and join the top 10 Miami list. Carli Reihman (2004-07) is the all-time leader in block assists with 387.

-- The Bobcats went 1-2 in the 2010 Baymont Inn & Suites Invitational earning a win over Pittsburgh but falling to No. 14 Tennessee and one-loss Northwestern. The loss to Tennessee snapped a 14-match home winning streak by the Bobcats. Sue Jacobi led the team in kills with 47 and Faith Robins had a career-night against the Lady Vols with 18 kills. This week the team travels to Texas for matches with TCU, UTSA and UAB.