Women's Volleyball Heads Down I-95 for Conference Showdown Against Fairfield on Saturday
Quinnipiac University Bobcats (4-19, 2-8 MAAC) @
Fairfield Stags (10-11, 8-3 MAAC)
Saturday, October 23, 2013 – 1:00 PM
Alumni Hall – Fairfield, Conn.
|Multimedia @ Fairfield|
|Quinnipiac Game Notes|
New Budding Rivalry
Quinnipiac women's volleyball looks to get back on the winning path as they travel down I-95 for a crosstown meeting with Fairfield on Saturday. Both teams met earlier this season with the Bobcats playing the reigning MAAC Champion Stags tough despite losing 3-1. Quinnipiac comes in riding a six-game losing streak and looks to find holes in the Fairfield defense and come out with their first ever win against the Stags.
All-Time Record Against Fairfield
Despite a short, 45 minute drive from one another, Quinnipiac and Fairfield have only met twice in their series history with both meetings coming in the last two seasons. Quinnipiac was swept in their only meeting last season on the road and were taken down, 3-1, on Sept, 21 in their first ever MAAC contest.
Scouting the Stags
Don't let their record fool you but the Fairfield Stags are one of the powerhouse teams in the Northeast region. They enter play with a 10-11 record but have played some of the toughest teams in the country including Northern Iowa, Missouri, Boston College, Cornell and LIU Brooklyn. After struggling through a 1-3 start to MAAC competition, they welcomed back Preseason MAAC Player of the Week and two-time reigning Setter of the Year Rachel Romansky from injury and are riding a seven-game winning streak ever since. Among their victims have been the likes of Marist twice as well as Siena, marking the first loss for the Saints in conference play this season. Fairfield has slowly but surely crept their back up the MAAC standings and currently sit in third place behind Manhattan and Siena with an 8-3 record in MAAC competition. The Bobcats will certainly have their hands full with Romansky as one of the most talented players in the conference comes in with 639 assists, 178 digs, 57 kills and 21 aces through 71 sets played. As a junior, Romansky registered 1,192 assists, the second most in the MAAC, 319 digs, 105 kills, 35 total blocks, and 30 aces en route to All-MAAC First Team accolades. The Bobcats will also have to deal with a combination of four different hitters starting with Marilyn Peizer who leads the team with 224 kills this season. Caitlin Stapleton has put up an impressive total of 197 kills to go along with a team-high 54 blocks. Hadley Orr (192 kills) and Hayley Moyer (159 kills, MAAC-leading .340 hitting percentage) also supply the power for the Stag offensive attack. Fairfield went 22-9 overall and 15-3 in league play last season en route to MAAC Regular Season and Tournament Championships and an NCAA Tournament appearance. It was the 12th MAAC Regular Season Championship overall and the third under two-time MAAC Coach of the Year Alija Pittenger. The MAAC Tournament Championship and NCAA Tournament appearance were the sixth in program history and the first since the 2001 season.
Last Time Out
The Bobcats returned home for the first time in two weeks but couldn't make the most of their homecoming as they fell to Bryant, 3-0. Senior Logan Riker made it eight matches out of her last nine in which she has gone for at least 10 digs. Freshman Katie Urycki pitched in a solid outing with five kills and seven digs in her two sets of action. Freshman Allison Leigh added her 100th block of the season as she still stands on-pace to break the single-season Quinnipiac program record.
100 Blocks and Counting
One of the more significant milestones to come out of Wednesday's match against Bryant was Allison Leigh recording her 100th block of the season in just her first year as a Bobcat. She becomes just the sixth player in program history to accomplish the feat and just the second player to ever do so in their first season with the team (Heather Wollyung, 104, during 1999 season).
Don't Mess With the Flow
Bonnie Conklin and Jamie Paolucci completely owned the net against Siena on Saturday as they each notched career highs with 10 and 8 blocks, respectively. They led a total team effort that compiled 15 total blocks against the Saints, including an incredible total of eight blocks in the third set alone, six of which coming in an eight point span.
Freshman setter Emma Ogden put up her team-leading fourth double double of the season against Siena as she went for 21 assists and 11 digs. It was her first double double since Oct. 6 when she put up 36 assists to go along with 14 digs against Saint Peter's.
Hitting Her Stride
Freshman right side Jamie Paolucci put together one of her best all-around game of her young career on Sunday against Canisius as she tied her career high with 13 kills to go along with three digs and two blocks. She tied her career high set back on Oct. 5 against Rider and has gone into double digits for kills three times this season.
It's a Block Party!
For as much as the Bobcats' freshman middle hitter Allison Leigh does on the offensive end, it's her defense that has been the most impressive area of her game thus far in the season. She currently leads all MAAC players with a 1.27 blocks per set average and is one of only five players in the conference to post an average of at least 1.00 per set.
MAAC Blocks Per Set Leaders (minimum 1.00 blocks per set)
|Rank||Player||School||Year||Blocks Per Set|
The Bobcats' freshman outside hitter Katie Urycki smashed a career and game high 17 kills against Saint Peter's, the most for any Bobcat in a match this season. Urycki's monster performance represented the most kills for any Bobcat in a single match all season and the most for a Bobcat in a match since Nov. 10, 2010 (102 matches) when Taylor Payne went for 19 kills against Bryant. She backed up her offensive output with 11 digs, three service aces and two blocks for her second career double double.
Quinnipiac's former MAAC Player of the Week, freshman setter Emma Ogden, was named MAAC Rookie of the Week earlier this season. She completely in control over the weekend as she compiled a total of 83 assists (10.38 per set average), 19 digs (2.38 per set), nine blocks (1.12 per set) and two service aces in two Bobcat victories this past weekend. Ogden stepped in from the first match of the season and has continued to improve throughout the year.
Riding the Wave
Senior libero Logan Riker, already the program's all-time leader in digs, picked up a season-high 21 digs on against Saint Peter's for her second match with at least 20 assists this season. Riker compiled 20 digs just once all last season. She tallied 10 digs against Bryant on Wednesday to give her double digit digs in eight of the last nine matches for the Bobcats.
Bringing the House Down
Allison Leigh posted a single-game Quinnipiac Division I record (since 1998) with 13 blocks (3 solo, 10 assists) on Saturday against the Broncs. Her single-game block total was the most for any Quinnipiac player in the Division I era as her conference-leading total moves up to 100 on the season. She also helped nullify a potential MAAC Freshman of the Year candidate in Kaitlyn Griffin to just five kills, four errors and a .067 hitting percentage (came into the match hitting at .324 percent this season).
Leigh and the Bobcats also got a massive lift from the play of other middle hitter, freshman Sam Alechko who finished with a career day across the board against Rider. Alechko went for eight kills against just one error for a team-high hitting percentage of .583. She also was a menace from the service line with three aces and added five blocks (2 solo, 3 assists), all of which represented career highs for the ever-improving middle hitter.
The Quinnipiac defense shut down the lethal Rider attack with 18 total blocks as a team including 13 (3 solo, 10 assists) for freshman Allison Leigh. Leigh's record-breaking day at the net included 12 kills for her first career double double.
Career High Combo
A couple more Bobcats posted career highs in victory over Rider as freshmen Emma Ogden (47 assists and 7 blocks) and Jamie Paolucci (13 kills) each went for individual career highs this past weekend.
Hitting on all Cylinders
This Quinnipiac offensive unit is rounding into shape as they went for 53 and 50 kills in their weekend matches against Rider and Saint Peter's. After not recording 50 kills in a match since 2011, this marks the first time the Bobcats have gone three straight matches with at least 50 kills since the 2005 season.
Setting the Stage
Much credit should go to the play of the Bobcats' freshman setter Emma Ogden, who posted the best game of her young career with a season and game-high 47 assists to go along with seven blocks, five digs, and one service ace against Rider. It marked the second match in which Ogden went over 40 assists and became the first Bobcat since Kayla Lawler on Oct. 30, 2011 (44 matches) to accomplish the feat.
A huge key for the Bobcats this season has been the marked improved play from Ogden as she currently sports a total of 630 assists through 23 matches. She can also stake her claim in the records books as her 23 match total represents more assists for a single player through their first 23 career matches for any Bobcat in program history.
Serving up Aces
One of the strongest areas of the new Bobcat squad has been their imposing play at the service line. Quinnipiac dominated reigning MAAC Champion Fairfield from the service line at 13-2 for the match. The Bobcats enter Wednesday's match with 120 aces on the season for a 1.46 per set average. The number is good for third-best in MAAC competition while Jamie Paolucci finds herself with the sixth-highest aces per set average (0.37).
Ladies and Gentlemen…We Have a Winner
Freshman setter Emma Ogden became the first Bobcat to earn a weekly Player of the Week award in nearly three years, following Kayla Lawler's honor on Oct. 11, 2010. Ogden is also just the fourth Quinnipiac player to earn Player of the Week since the Bobcats became a Division I program in 1998, joining Lawler, Heather Wollyung and Shannon Dublin.
Going by the Numbers
Ogden was instrumental in the Bobcats' winningest stretch since the 2010 season as they picked up two victories in four games the Crosstown Tournament. Playing in all 14 sets for the Bobcats, she compiled 103 assists, 32 digs, five service aces and three kills. Included in her weekend totals was one double double against Morgan St., her second of the year. Ogden went for 29 assists and 14 digs to go along with two service aces as the Bobcats knocked off the Lady Bears. Earlier in the tournament, she posted 37 assists, seven digs and a career-high three service aces against St. Francis Brooklyn to help lift the Bobcats to their first win of the 2013 season.
It's All About the D
Quinnipiac's defense certainly came to play against Saint Peter's as Allison Leigh lifted the team with six blocks (two solo, four assists) and four Bobcats (Logan Riker 21, Emma Ogden 14, Brittanie Robinson 11, Katie Urycki 11) all chipped in at least 11 digs in the victory.
This Girl is on Fire
The most imposing force for the Bobcats in the middle this season has undoubtedly been freshman Allison Leigh. She leads the team with 155 kills to go along with a .196 hitting percentage but Leigh's most valuable role on this team has been her defensive ability. After just 23 matches, she currently ranks first in the MAAC with 100 total blocks (35 solo, 65 assists) and 1.23 blocks per set average.
Master of Her Domain
After being granted a red-shirt season in 2011, senior libero Logan Riker is back for one more year with the Bobcats. Already the program's all-time leader in digs through her first three seasons, Riker has already posted a team-leading 288 digs to start the season.
Quinnipiac women's volleyball all-time career digs leaders
|1||Logan Riker, '13||1366|
|2||Kelby Carey, '11||1017|
|3||Heather Grutta, '02||918|
|4||Kayla Lawler, '11||819|
|5||Erin Overdevest, '09||814|
Freshman setter Emma Ogden was expected to see plenty of playing time in her first season but the immediate impact has been a pleasant surprise. Her all-around ability cannot be overstated as she has compiled 630 assists, 151 digs, 33 blocks, 23 kills and 22 service aces through the first 23 matches. Ogden has also played in all 82 sets thus far for the Bobcats.
Contact: Maxx McNall; email@example.com