Fifth-Ranked Huskers Begin Busy Week with Baylor
Match: #12: No. 5 Nebraska (10-1, 5-0 Big 12) vs. Baylor (8-7, 2-4 Big 12)
NU Coliseum Wed., Oct. 6 7 p.m.
Tickets: Sold out; the 47th consecutive sellout at the NU Coliseum
Radio: Pinnacle Sports Network (B107.3 FM in Lincoln and Omaha) and Huskers.com
Television: Nebraska Educational Television (NETV)
Live Internet Video: HuskersNside. For more information visit Huskers.com
Live Stats: Huskers.com
Series Record: Nebraska leads the all-time series 17-0, dating back to Sept. 22, 1995
Last Meeting: Nebraska won, 3-1 (30-19, 30-24, 28-30, 30-27) in Lincoln on Nov. 22, 2003
Coach Cook vs. Baylor: 8-0
Fifth-Ranked Huskers Begin Busy Week with Baylor
Lincoln -- After playing three of its last four matches on the road, the Nebraska volleyball team will stay in the state this week, as it plays host to a pair of Big 12 matches before traveling to North Platte for a matchup against Creighton on Sunday afternoon. The fifth-ranked Huskers (10-1, 5-0 Big 12) begin the week on Wednesday, Oct. 6, when they play host to Baylor (8-7, 2-4 Big 12) at 7 p.m. at the NU Coliseum.
Wednesday’s matchup is the 47th consecutive sellout at the NU Coliseum and will be carried live on the Pinnacle Sports Network, including radio flagship B107.3 FM in Lincoln, with John Baylor and Diane Mendenhall calling the action. The match will also be shown live throughout Nebraska on Nebraska Educational Television with Kevin Kugler and Kathi Weiskamp. In addition, volleyball fans with high-speed internet access can watch live on HuskersNside.com, a subscription-based service of the NU Athletic Department. Every regular-season match - both home and away - will be video streamed on the site.
While this is the first matchup of the year between the Huskers and Bears, both teams have been challenged by identical schedules the past two weeks, as both schools have faced nationally ranked Colorado, Texas A&M and Kansas in their previous three matches. The Huskers have swept their last seven matches since losing to Florida A&M on Sept. 10, including a 3-0 win at No. 24 Kansas last Wednesday, when the Huskers held the Jayhawks to -.046 hitting - the fourth opponent held in negative figures in the last eight matches. Christina Houghtelling had a career-high 13 kills and hit .500 to lead three Huskers in double figures in kills.
Baylor brings some momentum into Wednesday’s contest after a 3-1 win over the No. 24 Jayhawks on Saturday in Waco - Baylor’s first win over a ranked opponent since Sept. 24, 2003, when the Bears knocked off No. 9 Kansas State. In Saturday’s win over KU, Adeline Meira had 13 kills and hit .500, as five players reached double figures in kills in the win over Kansas, while holding KU to .139 hitting.
Saturday’s Match vs. Oklahoma Moved to 3 p.m.
Nebraska Coach John Cook announced Monday that this Saturday’s match against Oklahoma on Oct. 9, has been moved from 7 p.m. to 3 p.m. The match time was changed to avoid the Nebraska football team’s televised game at Texas Tech, which is set for a 6 p.m. start on TBS.
Oct. 16 Start Time vs. ISU at Devaney Center Set for 7 p.m.
Head Coach John Cook announced Tuesday that the start time for Nebraska’s Oct. 16 match against Iowa State at the Bob Devaney Sports Center has been set for 7 p.m. Both Nebraska’s volleyball and football teams will be in action that afternoon, as the Husker football team takes on Baylor at 1 p.m. at Memorial Stadium. The Oct. 16 match was moved to the 13,595-seat Devaney Center to give more Husker fans the opportunity to see the Huskers in action.
In 2000, Nebraska set a then-NCAA record, as a school-record crowd of 12,504 saw Nebraska’s match with Colorado at the Devaney Center. Tickets for the Oct. 16 match against the Cyclones are on sale by calling the Nebraska Ticket Office at (800) 8-Big Red or by logging on the Internet at Huskers.com.
- Nebraska will be looking for its 18th win in as many meetings against Baylor, as the Huskers have won all 17 previous meetings, including 15 by sweeps. While Nebraska is 9-0 against the Bears in Lincoln, Baylor has taken a game in two of the past three meetings in Lincoln (2001 and 2003).
- Nebraska will look to hold its fifth opponent to negative hitting numbers in the last eight matches, as opponents are hitting just .039 since the loss to Florida A&M on Sept. 11. In fact, only Missouri, which hit .155 in a Husker sweep on Sept. 15, has hit over .150 in that stretch.
- One Husker tradition that has continued in 2004 has been outstanding blocking, as the Huskers have out-blocked all 11 foes this season, and the last 17 dating back to last season. Melissa Elmer (1.75 b/g) and Tracy Stalls (1.65 b/g) and rank third and fourth, respectively, in the league in that category.
- One of the overlooked reasons for the success of the Huskers this season has been the improved play of sophomore Dani Busboom, who is second in the Big 12 averaging 13.39 assists per game. Her current average is the highest by a Husker setter since three-time All-American Fiona Nepo averaged 13.79 as a senior in 1998. Only four setters in NU history have averaged more than 13 assists per game.
Husker Probable Starters
L - #1 Amanda McCormick (5-8, So., Muncie, Ind.) - Sophomore co-captain returned as Nebraska’s starter at libero and is second in the Big 12 with 4.58 digs per game. She had at least 14 digs in seven straight matches before the streak was snapped at Kansas on Wednesday. She had 25 digs - the second-most ever by a Husker in a three-game match - against Texas A&M on Sept. 25. McCormick also paces the Big 12 in digs in league matches at 5.53 per game.
MB - #8 Melissa Elmer (6-2, Jr., Fort Wayne, Ind.) - Returning AVCA All-American who anchors the Huskers’ blocking corps and averages 3.03 kills and 1.75 blocks per game. She leads the Huskers in hitting and ranks second in the Big 12 in blocking. Elmer comes off one of her best matches of the season with 11 kills on .525 hitting and five blocks in the sweep vs. Kansas. Elmer has shined in NU’s biggest matches, hitting .402 and averaging 3.18 kills and 1.71 blocks per game in NU’s five matches against ranked opponents. She earned All-Big 12 honors in 2003, leading NU with 1.59 blocks per game along with a .352 hitting percentage. Elmer, who was named the Big 12 Preseason Player of the Year by the league coaches, spent the spring working with the U.S. National Training Team. She joins Amanda McCormick as a co-captain for the 2004 season.
MB - #11 Tracy Stalls (6-3, Fr., Arvada, Colo.) - Stalls has started all 11 matches at middle blocker, and is fifth in the Big 12 with 1.66 blocks per game. She has had at least five blocks in eight matches, including a season-high eight against Notre Dame (Sept. 4) and Texas Tech (Sept. 18). She had eight kills against No. 11 Texas A&M. Stalls served a two-year stint in the U.S. National Developmental program in Colorado Springs, Colo., after graduating from high school in 2002. She competed with the U.S. National Team in several competitions, including the 2003 Pan American Games and the 2004 Yeltsin Cup.
S - #18 Dani Busboom (5-11, So., Cortland, Neb.) - Busboom has performed well in handling NU’s shift back to a 5-1 offense, as she is second in the Big 12 with 13.52 assists per game. Busboom has had 50 or more assists three times, including a career-high 64 at Notre Dame on Sept. 4, the highest total by a Husker since the 2000 season. Busboom also averages 2.81 digs and 0.58 blocks per game. She guides an offense that is hitting .319 in league play and averaging a Big 12-best 17.93 kills per contest in the league. She recorded her team-high sixth double-double of the year at Kansas last Wednesday with 36 assists and a team-high 10 digs. Busboom totaled 700 assists as a freshman in 2003, which is the second-best total by any Husker freshman.
OPP - #9 Sarah Pavan (6-5, Fr., Kitchener, Ontario) - The Big 12 Preseason co-Freshman of the Year, Pavan leads the Huskers in kills per game (4.92) and topped the Huskers nine times in 11 matches. She is second in the league in kills and eighth in blocks per game (1.31). She dominated in a sweep over No. 11 Texas A&M on Sept. 25, recording 23 kills on .500 hitting with four blocks and eight digs. Pavan has six blocks and 11 kills at No. 24 Kansas last Wednesday. In league matches, she is second in both kills (5.07 per game) and blocks (1.93). At Texas Tech on Sept. 18, Pavan hit a season-best .550 (14 kills on 20 attacks) and added six blocks. She recorded her first career double-double with 24 kills and 15 digs against Florida A&M on Sept. 10. Considered by many to be the nation’s top freshman, Pavan has been a member of the Canadian National Team since July of 2003 - at age 16.
OH - #26 Jennifer Saleaumua (5-11, Jr., National City, Calif.) - Two-time All-Big 12 outside hitter who is second on the team in kills (3.14 per game) and digs (3.92), while hitting .280. She has three double-doubles (kills and digs) this year and had 18 kills - one off a career high - at Notre Dame on Sept. 4. She nearly recorded her fourth double-double of the year with nine kills on .364 hitting and nine digs at Kansas, while also chipping in five blocks. Saleaumua hit .360 with 12 kills and eight digs at No. 25 Colorado on Sept. 22. She is sixth in the Big 12 in digs and is 116 digs away from becoming the seventh Husker to record 1,000 career digs. Saleaumua led the Huskers in kills (3.27) and digs (3.90) per game in 2003, as her 441 digs were a school record, breaking the previous mark of 390 by Kate Crnich in 1996.
OH - #3 Christina Houghtelling (6-2, So., Cambridge, Neb.) - Sophomore who moved from middle blocker to outside hitter in 2004 and has started all five of NU’s Big 12 contests. Houghtelling shined in the win at Kansas, setting career highs in kills (13) and hitting percentage (.500) while adding eight digs and four service aces. She has had 10-or-more kills four times, including an 11-kill effort at Texas Tech on Sept. 18. Houghtelling had one of her best performances of the year against Missouri on Sept. 15, matching her then-career high with 10 kills and hitting .346. She also had 10 kills and nine digs in a win over Notre Dame (9/4). She missed most of 2003 with a knee injury, but had eight-or-more kills four times, including nine vs. No. 10 Georgia Tech.
-or- #7 Dani Mancuso (6-2 So., Omaha, Neb.) - Mancuso has started four matches at outside hitter and is averaging 2.61 kills per game. She came off the bench for three kills and a block in game three at No. 25 Colorado on Wednesday. Mancuso tied a career-high with 16 kills and added 11 digs for her first career double-double vs. Florida A&M on Sept. 10. Mancuso played the best match of her career at Notre Dame on Sept. 4, with 11 kills, three blocks and two aces in the final two-plus games vs. the Fighting Irish. She started NU’s final 10 contests in 2003, averaging 2.01 kills and 1.72 digs per game.
The Bears come to Lincoln with an 8-7 record after posting its best win of the season, a 3-1 upset over No. 24 Kansas in Waco on Saturday. Baylor began the year by losing three of its first four matches before turning the corner by going 7-4 since then, including a pair of Big 12 victories.
Head Coach Jim Barnes is in his first season at Baylor after spending the previous two years at Wyoming. Barnes also spent six seasons at Lamar, guiding the Cardinals to a pair of conference titles before taking the Wyoming job in 2002.
The Bears return four starters from a team that went 12-22 and tied for eighth in the Big 12 with a 4-16 record. Sophomore middle blocker Desiree Guillard-Young is their Bears’ top player, as she is fourth in in the league in hitting percentage (.386) and is 10th in blocks (1.19 b/gm). Outside hitter Nicole LeBlanc tops BU in kills (3.25 per game) while Adeline Meira is fourth in the leauge in blocks at 1.71 per game.
Nebraska has owned the all-time series with Baylor, winning all 17 previous matchup, including all 16 conference matchups since the league was formed in 1996. Baylor has enjoyed more success at the NU Coliseum than in Waco, as it has won games in both 2001 and 2003 against the Huskers. Baylor’s 30-28 win in game one of the 2001 meeting in Lincoln was one of only two games that Nebraska dropped all season in league play en route to a 20-0 conference mark.
Last Meeting: Nebraska 3, Baylor 1
Anna Schrad tallied 16 kills, a career-high eight blocks and five digs to lead lead No. 10 Nebraska to a 30-19, 30-24, 28-30, 30-27 win over Baylor in front of 4,063 fans at the NU Coliseum on Nov. 22, 2003.
Middle blocker Melissa Elmer pounded 18 kills and swung for a .412 hitting percentage to go along with six blocks and three service aces. Michelle Lynch tied her career-high with five service aces, while Sara Westling had eight kills on .467 hitting and six blocks.
Stevie Nicholas posted 22 kills for the Bears in a losing effort, as Nebraska held Baylor to .197 hitting.
Sophomore Christina Houghtelling enjoyed a career night with 13 kills, leading No. 7 Nebraska to a 30-13, 30-14, 30-24 sweep over No. 24 Kansas at the Horejsi Family Activities Center Wednesday evening.
The 6-foot-2 outside hitter from Cambridge, Neb., was one of three Huskers with at least 10 kills, establishing career highs in both kills and hitting percentage (.500) on 22 swings and adding eight digs. Houghtelling’s previous career high was 11 kills against Texas Tech on Sept. 18 and .462 hitting against Texas Tech on Sept. 27, 2003.
Melissa Elmer and Sarah Pavan joined Houghtelling in double figures with 11 kills apiece, as Nebraska improved to 10-1 overall and 5-0 in the Big 12. Elmer hit .536 on 19 swings and chipped in five blocks, while Pavan had 11 kills and a game-high six blocks to help Nebraska enjoy a dominant 16-4 advantage in blocks.
The Huskers hit .380 as a team its highest single-game total since hitting .433 against Western Michigan on Sept. 6 while holding Kansas to -.046 hitting. The Jayhawks became the fourth team to be held in negative numbers this season and the lowest since Iowa State hit -.051 during the 2002 season.
With the win, Nebraska improved to 5-0 against ranked teams and has won all 73 meetings against Kansas in series history.
Huskers Have Foes Seeing Red
One of the reasons for Nebraska’s continued success is its play on the defensive side of the court. The Huskers are holding opponents to a league-low .091 hitting percentage and have allowed only one opponent Notre Dame, which hit .277 on Sept. 4 to hit above .200.
Over the last seven matches, the Huskers have been even tougher, holding four opponents to negative hitting totals, as opponents have combined to hit just .040 in that stretch.
At the First National Bank/Arby’s Classic, NU held Ball State (-.018) and Maryland (-.016) to negative numbers - marking the first time since November of 2002 that the Huskers held consecutive foes to below .000 hitting. Against Texas Tech on Sept. 18, the Red Raiders hit -.032, while NU held Kansas to -.046 on Wednesday, the lowest total by a Nebraska opponent since Iowa State hit -.051 on Nov. 14, 2002.
Under John Cook, the Huskers have held 13 opponents to a negative hitting percentage, as the four opponents in 2004 equals the most under Cook, as the 2002 team also held four opponents to negative numbers.
Lowest Hitting Percentages vs. NU since 2000
Date Opponent Pct.
10/3/00 Creighton -.105
9/29/02 Creighton -.068
9/4/00 Oral Roberts -.066
11/13/02 Iowa State -.051
9/29/04 Kansas -.046
Husker Block is Best in the Land
After a one-year hiatus where the Huskers were sixth nationally in blocking, the 2004 Huskers are back on top of the NCAA rankings in blocking. Nebraska led the nation in blocking in the latest NCAA ranking (3.73 blocks per game as of Sept. 26) and comes into Wednesday’s match against Baylor averaging 3.73 blocks per game. The Huskers have out-blocked their last 17 opponents dating back to last season, including two matches against Notre Dame, which led the nation in blocking during the 2003 season.
Elmer Puts Up All-America Numbers
After earning second-team All-America honors in 2003, Melissa Elmer has continued to make strides this fall. The 6-foot-2 middle blocker was chosen as the Big 12 Preseason Player of the Year this fall and has been an instrumental part in NU’s success this fall. She leads the Huskers in blocks (1.75/gm) and hitting percentage (.356) while ranking third in kills (3.03). She ranks second in the Big 12 in blocks and was ranked sixth nationally in last week’s NCAA rankings.
Elmer has played her best matches against NU’s toughest foes, as she is hitting .402 with 3.18 kills per game in five matches against ranked opponents. Elmer comes off one of her best efforts of the year against No. 24 Kansas, when she had 11 kills and five blocks while hitting .562 in the sweep of the Jayhawks.
Elmer ranks 10th all-time with 349 block assists and moved past Carla Baker (338, 1986-89) for 10th place on NU’s all-time list against Colorado on Sept. 22. She needs 20 more blocks to reach 400 in her Husker career. In her career, she is averaging 2.77 kills and 1.50 blocks per game, while her .362 career hitting percentage would rank among the top performers in NU history.
Saleaumua Digs on in Career Record
One career mark that could be in jeapordy this season is the school record for career digs. Jennifer Saleaumua comes into the week with 884 digs, and needs just 116 more digs to become the seventh Husker with 1,000 career digs. At her career average of 3.56 digs per game, Saleaumua could become Nebraska’s all-time leader in digs this season, passing Lindsay Wischmeier, who had 1,111 digs from 1999 to 2002.
Saleaumua could join another exclusive club this season, as only one other player in school history - Eileen Shannon who had 1,521 kills and 1,074 digs - has ever reached the 1,000 mark in both kills and digs in their career.Husker 1,000 Dig Club
Rank Name Yrs. Total
1. Lindsay Wischmeier 1999-02 1,111
2. Angie Oxley 1997-00 1,086
3. Eileen Shannon 1989-92 1,074
4. Val Novak 1987-90 1,068
5. Billie Winsett 1992-95 1,032
6. Maria Hedbeck 1993-96 1,018
-- Jennifer Saleaumua 2002-Pres 884
Houghtelling Shines in Shift Outside
One of the pleasent suprises early in 2004 has been the play of outside hitter Christina Houghtelling, The sophomore from Cambridge, Neb., began her career at Nebraska as a middle blocker before a knee injury curtailed a promising 2003 season. This fall, she was shifted outside and has been a force for Nebraska. She has had four games of at least 10 kills, including a 13-kill effort when she hit .500 in a sweep of Kansas on Sept. 29. Houghtelling is averaging nearly three kills per game and over two digs per game. One of NU’s best servers, she unveiled her jump serve for the first time against No. 11 Texas A&M on Sept. 25, and had two aces. She then matched that performance at Kansas the following Wednesday and ranks ninth in the Big 12 in league play, averaging .0.36 service aces per game.
Busboom Gives the Huskers Assists
With the switch back to the 5-1 offense this season, Dani Busboom has taken full advantage of her expanded role at the center of Nebraska’s attack.
Busboom is second in the Big 12, averaging 13.39 assists per game. She has had a trio of 50-assist contests in 2004, including a career-high 64 assists in a win at No. 25 Notre Dame on Sept. 4. If she continues her current assist pace, it would be the highest average by a Husker setter since 1998 when Fiona Nepo averaged 13.79 assists per game.
Busboom, who ranked 12th nationally in assists in last week’s NCAA stats, is the only setter in the league to have 50 assists in a three-game match more than once this season, accomplishing the feat against Western Michigan (9/4) and Missouri (9/15).
Busboom, who was an outside hitter in high school until her senior season, has a team-high six double-doubles this season, including a 50-assist, 13-dig performance against Missouri on Sept. 15.
Nebraska’s top-ranked recruiting class has provided immediate dividends for the Huskers in 2004, as Sarah Pavan and Tracy Stalls have more than lived up to the lofty expectations.
Pavan leads the Huskers in kills (4.92), a total that is second in the Big 12, and is eighth in the league in blocks (1.31). Pavan is the only player in the league who is in the top-10 in both kills and blocks.The 6-foot-5 opposite hitter has topped the Huskers in kills nine times, most recently against No. 11 Texas A&M when she drilled 23 kills on .500 hitting. Her 24 kills against Florida A&M on Sept. 10 were the third-most by a Husker in the rally scoring era and the most since U.S. Olympian Nancy Metcalf had 25 against Florida in the 2001 NCAA Regional Final.
Her numbers in Big 12 matches are even better, as she is first in blocks (1.97), second in kills (5.07) and tied for third in hitting percentage (.394). Pavan hit a season-high .550 (14-3-20) at Texas Tech on Sept. 18 while adding six blocks.
Over the last 21 years, only one freshman - Eileen Shannon in 1989 - has led the Huskers in kills, as she holds freshman marks in both kills (479) and kills per game (4.24), totals that Pavan is on pace to obliterate this fall.
Stalls has been equally impressive in showing the all-around abilities that made her one of the nation’s top recruits. The 6-foot-3 middle hitter is fifth in the Big 12 and in blocking, averaging 1.66 blocks per game to rank 15th in last week’s NCAA rankings. She also is tied for the team lead in service aces (eight) and is third in assists (0.46 per game). Stalls has had nine or more kills three times, including a career-high 10 kills on .643 hitting at Western Michigan on Sept. 4. She also has at least five blocks in eight matches, including eight at Texas Tech (9/18) and seven at No. 25 Colorado (9/22). Her eight blocks against the Red Raiders matched her season high set against Notre Dame on Sept. 4.
The third member of the Husker freshman class, middle blocker Meghan Smith, is a Volleyball Magazine Fab 50 recruit and provides depth at middle blocker behind Elmer and Stalls and has appeared in three matches.
Husker Youth Movement: Part 2
After a year where the Huskers played as many as five freshmen at the same time, Nebraska has seemingly gotten more youthful in 2004. All eight of the players who have started matches this year are underclassmen (two juniors, four sophomores and two freshmen). Ally Rebholz is the only senior on the 2004 roster, while only four of the 13 players are upperclassmen.
Rank and File
With the No. 5 ranking in this week’s poll, Nebraska is one of two teams to be ranked in the USA Today/CSTV Coaches poll for all 308 weeks of its existence. The Huskers have been ranked in the top 10 for 274 of the 308 weeks, which ranks second behind Stanford’s 288. NU has spent 38 weeks in the top spot, and its most recent No. 1 ranking was Sept. 24, 2001.
Cook’s Winning Ways
Nebraska Coach John Cook has been amazingly successful during his five seasons at the helm of the Husker program, posting a 134-10 record (.931 winning percentage). All nine losses prior to this season have come against teams that advanced to the NCAA Tournament, including the eventual NCAA champion in both 2001 (Stanford) and 2002 (USC). In the Big 12, Cook has enjoyed even greater success, going 82-3 in his four-plus seasons. Nebraska swept through the Big 12 in 2000, 2001 and 2002 before seeing its 77-match Big 12 winning streak (dating back to 1999) end in a loss to Kansas State on Oct. 11, 2003.
Cook was the AVCA Coach of the Year in 2000 after leading Nebraska to a 34-0 season and a national title. He was also named the 2001 Big 12 Coach of the Year.
Sellout Streak Extends to 46
Nebraska will carry a streak of 46 consecutive sellouts at the NU Coliseum into Wednesday’s match against Baylor. The streak began with a 10-match stretch to close the 2001 season and extended through the 2002 and 2003 campaigns. The last non-sellout came on Sept. 25, 2001, against Creighton. Nebraska ranked third nationally in total attendance, averaging 4,239 fans per match. In 2004, every reserve seat is sold out for the season while limited general admission seating is available for selected matches by calling 800-8 BIG RED.
Husker Dig in Defensively
One significant improvement for Nebraska has been on the defensive end. The Huskers, who were second in the league with 16.59 digs per game, have upped that total to a league-high 17.72 digs per game. Although it is just a third into the season, Nebraska is on pace to shatter the school mark of 17.27 digs per game set in 1993 and rank among the top-five totals in Big 12 history. Individually, both Amanda McCormick (4.58 digs per game) and Jennifer Saleaumua (3.92) are both above the current school record of 3.90 digs per game set by Saleaumua last season.
Pavan Earns Big 12 Weekly Honor
Sarah Pavan was chosen as the Big 12 Volleyball Player of the Week (Sept. 20-26). The 6-foot-5 outside hitter from Kitchener, Ontario, led the seventh-ranked Huskers to sweeps over No. 25 Colorado and No. 11 Texas A&M. In the two matches, she totaled 44.5 points, recorded 39 kills (6.50/game), 10 blocks (1.69/game) and 12 digs (2.00/game), while hitting .492. Pavan totaled 16 kills on .478 hitting and added six blocks in a win at Colorado on Sept. 22 before recording 23 kills on .500 hitting against the 11th-ranked Aggies on Sept. 25. She had at least eight kills in three games, including 10 in the second game against the Aggies.
Melissa Elmer continued Nebraska's remarkable streak of AVCA All-Americans by earning second-team accolades in 2003. With Elmer’s selection, Nebraska has had at least one All-American every season since 1983, a total of 21 straight seasons, including 11 in Coach John Cook's four seasons at Nebraska. A total of 23 players have combined to earn 46 AVCA All-America certificates. Nebraska leads the nation in both categories.
Red, White and Blue
Nebraska continued its Olympic tradition in 2004 with Nancy (Meendering) Metcalf's selection to the U.S. Olympic team. A three-time All-American at Nebraska, Metcalf became the third Husker to make an Olympic team, joining Lori Endicott, who competed in the 1992 and 1996 Olympics, and Allison Weston, who was the captain of the U.S. Team in the 2000 Olympics. Metcalf played in all six matches in Athens, as Team USA reached the quarterfinals before losing to Brazil. Of Team USA’s four losses, three came in five sets, while also sweeping three-time gold medalist Cuba in the preliminary round.
Husker Red, White and Blue: Part 2
Junior middle blocker Melisa Elmer spent part off the off-season training with the U.S. National Training Team, which was coached by NU Coach John Cook. The team won the USA Volleyball Adult Open Championships, going a perfect 4-0 and sweeping three of its four opponents en route to the title.
McCormick, Elmer Named 2004 Captains
NU Coach John Cook announced Aug. 24 that Melissa Elmer and Amanda McCormick were named captains for the 2004 season.
The preseason Big 12 Player of the Year, Elmer earned first-team All-Big 12 honors in 2003. She led the Big 12 with 1.59 blocks per game while ranking among the conference leaders with a .352 hitting percentage. The 6-foot-2 junior from Fort Wayne, Ind., was third in school history with 169 blocks, including a career-high 15 in a win at Kansas.
McCormick served as the Huskers’ libero in 2003, appearing in 22 matches. The sophomore from Muncie, Ind., set a school freshman record with 3.72 digs per game, including a career-high 31 against Missouri in 2003.
Success in the Classroom
Nebraska continued its successful legacy in the classroom in 2003, as Anna Schrad garnered second-team CoSIDA Academic All-America honors. Overall, NU has produced an NCAA-leading 17 academic All-Americans, who have earned a nation-best 26 academic All-America certificates. NU has had at least one CoSIDA Academic All-American in 17 of the last 20 seasons.
10 Husker Matches to be Televised
Nebraska Athletic Department announced that a total of 10 Husker volleyball matches will be televised this season. The 2004 broadcast schedule began on Sept. 15, with the Huskers’ match against Missouri and will continue with. eight other games will be carried live on NETV, highlighted by tilts against Texas A&M (Sept. 25), Colorado (Oct. 27), Kansas State (Nov. 6), Kansas (Nov. 12) and Texas (Nov. 24). In addition, five matches will be carried nationally by College Sports Television, highlighted by the Nov. 7 match against Colorado State, which will be shown live as part of the AVCA Sunday Night Spikes Package.
Oct. 13 Match at KSU on Fox Sports Midwest
In addition to the 10 above matches, Nebraska’s match at Kansas State next Wednesday, Oct. 13, will be carried on Fox Sports Midwest on a tape-delay basis. The match will be aired on Sunday, Oct. 17, at 3 p.m. central.