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Gina Mancuso and the Huskers open the 2011 NCAA Tournament with Jackson State on Thursday at 7 p.m.
Courtesy: NU Media Relations
          Release: 11/29/2011
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Huskers Open NCAA Tournament with Jackson State

No. 2 Nebraska vs. Jackson State Thursday, Dec. 1 NU Coliseum 7 p.m.

TV: NET
Radio: Husker Sports Network, including B107.3 FM in Lincoln and KTWI 93.3 FM in Omaha, and on Huskers.com
Live Stats: Huskers.com

The No. 2 Nebraska volleyball team (24-4, 17-3 Big Ten) will open the NCAA Tournament at home for the eighth straight season on Thursday night when it hosts the Jackson State Tigers (26-9, 8-0 SWAC) at the NU Coliseum. The match is set to start at 7 p.m., or 30 minutes after the first match of the day ends between Kansas State and Wichita State.

Nebraska, who recently won its first Big Ten title, will be making its 30th appearance in the NCAA Tournament.

Jackson State will be making its first appearance in the national tournament after winning its first Southwestern Conference title in program history. The Tigers went undefeated in conference play and are coming off a 3-1 win over Alabama A&M in the SWAC Championship match.

Thursday night's match will be the first-ever meeting between Nebraska and Jackson State. It will be the second time the Huskers have ever played a team from the Southwestern Conference as Nebraska played Alabama A&M in 2005.

Along with TV coverage by NET, the match will be shown live on BTN2Go. Fans can also listen to all of the action with John Baylor and Lindsay Peterson on the 25-station Husker Sports Network, including B107.3 FM in Lincoln and Twister 93.3 FM in Omaha. Fans outside the network will also be able to catch the live audio feed for free on Huskers.com

Getting to Know the Jackson State Tigers

Location: Jackson, Miss.

Enrollment: 8,699

Nickname: Tigers

Colors: Blue and White

Head Coach: Rose Washington (Jackson State, '77)

Record at School: 151-184 (10 years)

Overall Record: same

Asst. Coach: Latasha Pusha

2011 Record: 26-9

2011 SWAC Record: 8-0

2010 Postseason: None

2010 Final Ranking: NR

Series Record: 0-0

Last Meeting: Never

Last Nebraska Win: Never

Last Nebraska Loss: Never

Longest Nebraska Winning Streak: 0

Current Nebraska Winning Streak: 0

NU at home: 0-0

Nebraska on the road: 0-0

Nebraska at neutral sites: 0-0

Three sets: 0-0

Four sets: 0-0

Five sets: 0-0

The Jackson State Tigers

No.           Name                        Yr.            Pos.          Ht.            Hometown (Previous School)

1              LaTosha Scott            So.           MB           6-0            Louisville, Ky. (Presentation Academy)

2              Donisha Dunn            Sr.            MB           6-2            Austin, Texas (Del Valle)

3              Daedra Carline           Sr.            DS            5-4            Fairview, Ore. (De La Salle North Catholic)

4              Kameron BogganJr.     MB/OH      5-10          Portland, Ore.

5              Paige Williams            So.           MB/S        6-1            Alrington, Texas (Mansfield Timberview)

6              Krishauna Kindall        Sr.            OH           5-6            North Little Rock, Ark. (Central Baptist)

7              LaToya Clark              Sr.            S              5-4            Tallahassee, Fla. (Florida State University)

8              Angelica Kelley           So.           S/DS         5-7            Desoto, Texas (Desoto)

9              Alexis Ammerman Fr.  OH/MB/RS 6-0           Tucson, Ariz.

10             Briana Hopkins           So.           DS            5-8            Houston, Texas (North Shore Senior)

11             Ryan Irving                Fr.            DS            5-4            Avondale, Ariz.

12             Chyna Coleman          Sr.            OH           5-8            Phoenix, Ariz. (Phoenix College)

19             Jazmyn Hunter           Fr.            MB           6-2            Buckeye, Ariz.

20             Christine Edwards Jr. OH           5-10          Lakewood, Calif.

Head Coach: Rose Washington (10th Season)
Assistant Coach: Latasha Pusha (3rd Season)

Pronunciation Guide

Daedra Carline: Day-Druh Car-Line

Krishauna Kindall: Chris-Shawn-Ah

Cyna Colman: China

Scouting the Jackson State Tigers

  • The Tigers enter Thursday night's match with a 26-9 overall record and an 8-0 record in the Southwestern Conference.
  • Jackson State won its first SWAC Tournament title this season, which earned them the program's first trip to the NCAA Tournament.
  • Christine Edwards leads the Tigers offensively with 565 kills and an average of 4.22 kills per set. She ranks 25th nationally in kills per set.
  • Chyna Coleman has 368 kills for Jackson State on the year, averaging 2.96 kills per set.
  • At the net, Paige Williams leads the Tigers in blocks and ranks 35th nationally in blocks per set with a total of 134 and an average of 1.26.
  • Jackson State had three players selected as first-team All-SWAC honorees as Edwards was joined by teammates Williams, Daedra Carline and LaToya Clark, while Donisha Dunn earned a spot on the second-team.
  • Edwards guided Jackson State to their first ever SWAC title with 17 kills on 39 attacks and .308 hitting as the Tigers took on Alabama A&M. Chyna Coleman had 15 kills for Jackson State, while Donisha Dunn had nine. LaToya Clark and Coleman both notched 13 digs, while the Tigers had eight team blocks. Jackson State held Alabama State to a .037 hitting percentage. Edwards was named the tournament MVP, as she was joined on the All-Tournament team by Coleman and Clark.
  • At setter, LaToya Clark has 1,356 assists on the year, averaging 10.04 per set.
  • Defensively, Carline has 396 digs on the season and an average of 3.33 per set. Coleman has notched 364 digs on the year, while averaging 2.94.
  • Jackson State carries a hot winning streak into the NU Coliseum, as they have captured eight consecutive conference matches.
  • Since Head Coach Rose Washington arrived 10 years ago, the Jackson State volleyball program has grown each year. Washington is a 1977 graduate of Jackson State. Her leadership guided the Tigers to their first SWAC Championship in 2011.

Big Ten Weekly Awards

(3 honors by 2 players)

Gina Mancuso

Co-Player of the Week (Sept. 26)

Mancuso averaged 3.7 kills per set with a .319 hitting percentage, along with 1.6 digs and 0.4 blocks per set in the Huskers' back-to-back wins over Penn State and Ohio State. She recorded a double-double against Penn State with 22 kills and 10 digs, marking the fifth double-double of her career. She also tied her career-high mark for attacks against Penn State.

Player of the Week (Oct. 23)

Mancuso posted 4.1 kills, 3.3 digs and 1.0 block per set in Nebraska's wins over the Hawkeyes and Fighting Illini. She recorded her 10th double-double of the season with 15 kills and 14 digs, adding five blocks and two aces to help the Huskers take down Illinois. She also notched 14 kills, nine digs and two blocks against Iowa. Her efforts helped Nebraska earn its first win over a top-ranked opponent since 1990. The honor marked the second conference player-of-the-week award for Mancuso.

Hannah Werth

Player of the Week (Oct. 17)

Werth averaged 4.0 kills and 2.9 digs per set and recorded a .385 hitting percentage in back-to-back wins at Wisconsin and Minnesota. She posted 17 kills on .536 hitting and added 10 digs against the Badgers. Werth recorded her second double-double of the weekend against the Gophers, tallying 15 kills and 17 digs while adding six blocks.

Player of the Week (Nov. 21)

Werth recorded 3.8 digs and 3.5 kills on .323 hitting to lead No. 4 Nebraska to four-set wins over No. 19 Minnesota and Wisconsin, helping the Huskers clinch at least a share of the Big Ten title. She posted 14 kills, 17 digs and a .379 hitting percentage against Minnesota. Werth then notched her second double-double of the week against the Badgers, recording 14 kills and 13 digs. She was also selected as the Sports Imports/AVCA National Player of the Week.

Nebraska Clinches Outright Big Ten Title

Huskers Earn First Big Ten Title in School History

Nebraska clinched its first Big Ten Championship on Tuesday after a 3-0 sweep of the Iowa Hawkeyes at Carver-Hawkeye Arena. With the championship, Nebraska also earned the conference's automatic bid to the NCAA Championship.

The 2011 Big Ten title marks the 32nd conference title for Nebraska overall and their first as a member of the Big Ten Conference. It is also the first Big Ten Conference crown for any sport at Nebraska.

Hot in November

Huskers Boast All-Time Record of 220-20 in November
Historically, the Huskers' two best months are September (293-26) and November (220-20), as they have all-time winning percentages of .919 and .921, respectively.

Comeback Kids

Huskers Are 7-3 when Losing the First Set of a Match


The Huskers have dropped the first set nine times this season, most recently against Northwestern on Nov. 26. However, Nebraska holds a record of 7-3 when losing the first set in 2011.

Volleyball Blackshirts

Huskers' Defense Halts Opponents

Nebraska held Iowa to a .000 hitting percentage on Oct. 19, marking the lowest percentage for a Nebraska opponent this season. The Huskers also held Albany to a .038 hitting percentage for the match, Creighton to a .053 hitting percentage on Sept. 8, Indiana to a .022 hitting percentage on Oct. 8 and Michigan State to a .026 hitting percentage of Nov. 5.

Scouting the Huskers

  • Nebraska is 24-4 in 2011 and enters this weekend's match ranked No. 2 in the latest AVCA Coaches Poll.
  • The Huskers are 20-2 this season when holding opponents below .200 hitting. Nebraska is 4-2 when opposing teams hit above .200.
  • Nebraska has totaled double-digit blocks in 15 matches this season, including a season-high 18 blocks against Michigan.
  • The Huskers tallied a season-low six errors against Albany on Sept. 3. The last time NU had six errors or less in a match was against Sacred Heart on Dec. 2, 2010.
  • Gina Mancuso has 372 kills so far in 2011, averaging 3.54 per set.
  • Mancuso was named the Big Ten Player of the Week on Monday, Oct. 24 after leading the Huskers over previously top-ranked Illinois and the Co-Big Ten Player of the Week on Monday, Sept. 26 after her stellar weekend against Penn State and Ohio State.
  • Werth was named the Big Ten Player of the Week on Monday, Oct. 17 and Oct. 21, after solid outings at Wisconsin and Minnesota. She was also named the Sports Imports/AVCA National Player of the Week.
  • Lara Dykstra has 380 digs so far in her freshman campaign, averaging 3.62 per set. She now ranks first in the all-time freshman digs record at Nebraska.
  • Lauren Cook has totaled 1,072 assists in 2011, averaging 10.94 per set.
  • Brigette Root made her first career start at setter against Michigan on Friday, Nov. 4. She notched the first double-double of her career with 25 assists and 11 digs.
  • As of Nov. 27, the Huskers ranked 26th nationally in blocks per set with 2.65. NU was 16th in hitting percentage at .262. Lauren Cook ranked 40th nationally in assists per set (10.94).
  • Nebraska is making its 30th consecutive appearance in the NCAA Tournament. Only Penn State and Stanford have more trips with each making their 31st appearance this year.
  • The Huskers have 82 all-time NCAA Tournament wins, second behind Stanford (97).
  • Nebraska continued its string of All-America success in 2010, as Brooke Delano, Lindsey Licht and Hannah Werth were named AVCA All-Americans. The trio upped Nebraska's NCAA-leading totals to 34 players and 70 certificates. Nebraska has had at least one All-American every season since 1983, a total of 29 straight seasons, including 35 All-America awards in Cook's 11 years at Nebraska.
  • Nebraska has eight players on its 2011 roster who were Volleyball Magazine Fab 50 selections, representing the top 50 players in that year's recruiting class.

Year          Players

2008         Allison McNeal

2009         Gina Mancuso, Hannah Werth, Hayley Thramer, Lauren Cook

2010         Morgan Broekhuis

2011         Lara Dykstra, Taylor Simpson

Tough Tests

With the match against No. 19 Minnesota on Nov. 16, Nebraska was taking on its 13th top-25 team this season.

Opponent                                 Result

at No. 15 Colorado State           L, 3-2
vs. No. 12 Iowa State                W, 3-0
vs. No. 5 Penn State                 W, 3-2
vs. No. 24 Ohio State                W, 3-1
at No. 11 Michigan                    W, 3-0
vs. No. 11 Purdue                     W, 3-1
at No. 14 Minnesota                  W, 3-2
vs. No. 1 Illinois                        W, 3-1
at No. 23 Ohio State                  W, 3-1
at No. 8 Penn State                   L, 3-1
vs. No. 23 Michigan                   W, 3-1
at No. 10 Purdue                       L, 3-0
vs. No. 19 Minnesota                 W, 3-1

Cook Reaches 500

With the Huskers' win over Albany on Sept. 3, Head Coach John Cook tallied his 500th win as a head coach.


No Place Like Nebraska

Nebraska celebrated a streak of 150 consecutive sellouts at the NU Coliseum on Sept. 8. It is the longest continuing sellout streak across all NCAA women's athletics. The Huskers averaged 4,632 fans per home contest last season. As of Nov. 28, Nebraska ranks first nationally in current home win streaks with 38.

Small Membership

Lara Dykstra became just the seventh true freshman to start a season opener during Head Coach John Cook's era at Nebraska. Sophomore Morgan Broekhuis was the last Husker to do so in 2010.

Dykstra Digging

Through the first 28 matches of her collegiate career, freshman Lara Dykstra has notched 380 digs of her own and an average of 3.62 digs per set. Her 28 digs against New Mexico State ranked ninth in Nebraska volleyball single-match performances and were the highest total by a Husker since 2009.

Thramer Makes Impact

Sophomore Hayley Thramer made her first career start at New Mexico on Aug. 27. She notched a career-high 10 blocks against Illinois on Oct. 22. She currently ranks sixth in the Big Ten in blocks, averaging 1.13 per set.

Producing Double-Doubles

Five Huskers have combined for 45 double-doubles in 2011, with Mancuso tallying 12, Broekhuis tabbing six, Root adding one, Werth notching 10 of her own and Cook adding 16.

Brigette Root |  2011 (1)  |  NU Career (1), All (1)

Opponent (Date)           K          A          D          B

Michigan (Nov. 4)          5          35         11         2

Gina Mancuso  |  2011 (12)  |  NU Career (12), All (12)

Opponent (Date)                       K          A          D          B

New Mexico State (Aug. 26)       16         0          14         2
Colorado State (Sept. 2)            24         3          10         1
Creighton (Sept. 8)                    12         0          10         1
Saint Mary's (Sept. 9)                15         1          11         3
Iowa State (Sept. 17)                 14         0          11         1
Penn State (Sept. 21)                22         0          10         2
Michigan State (Sept. 30)           12         1          10         3
Purdue (Oct. 7)                          16         0          19         0
Minnesota (Oct. 15)                   18         0          15         5
Illinois (Oct. 22)                         15         0          14         5
Minnesota (Nov. 16)                  14         1          16         1
Northwestern (Nov. 26)              13         0          17         2

Lauren Cook |  2011 (16)  |  NU Career (35)

Opponent (Date)                       K          A          D          B

New Mexico State (Aug. 26)       1          51         10         0
New Mexico (Aug. 27)                0          40         12         1
Colorado State (Sept. 2)            2          49         12         2
Albany (Sept. 3)                        2          34         13         1
Creighton (Sept. 8)                    5          33         13         0
Penn State (Sept. 21)                1          53         17         2
Ohio State (Sept. 24)                 4          41         14         3
Purdue (Oct. 7)                          0          51         12         1
Wisconsin (Oct. 14)                   1          38         11         0
Minnesota (Oct. 15)                   2          45         19         0
Iowa (Oct. 19)                            4          32         16         0
Illinois (Oct. 22)                         0          54         13         0
Penn State (Oct. 29)                  1          32         11         0
Minnesota (Nov. 16)                  1          47         12         4
Iowa (Nov. 22)                           3          32         10         1
Northwestern (Nov. 26)              2          38         15         3

Hannah Werth |  2011 (10)  |  NU Career (32), All (32)

Opponent (Date)                       K          A          D          B

Colorado State (Sept. 2)            12         0          15         1
St. Mary's (Sept. 9)                   10         1          11         1
Wisconsin (Oct. 14)                   17         0          10         0
Minnesota (Oct. 15)                   15         2          17         6
Illinois (Oct. 22)                         14         1          17         0
Ohio State (Oct. 28)                   11         1          13         3
Michigan State (Nov. 5)             11         0          10         3
Minnesota (Nov. 16)                  14         0          17         2
Wisconsin (Nov. 19)                  14         0          13         2
Northwestern (Nov. 26)              15         0          14         2

Morgan Broekhuis |  2011 (6)  |  NU Career (6), All (6)

Opponent (Date)                       K          A          D          B

Iowa State (Sept. 17)                 11         2          10         4
Penn State (Sept. 21)                12         4          11         4
Purdue (Oct. 7)                          13         2          10         2
Illinois (Oct. 22)                         17         2          11         4
Minnesota (Nov. 16)                   14         1          16         1
Northwestern (Nov. 26)              12         2          10         3

Broekhuis Breakout

Morgan Broekhuis recorded the first double-double of her career against Iowa State on Sept. 17, with 11 kills and 10 digs. She has notched five others this season. Her 22 kills at Michigan State on Sept. 30 marked a career high for her.

Mancuso Paving Her Way

Gina Mancuso has notched 12 double-doubles so far in 2011, most recently against Northwestern on Nov. 26. She tallied 13 kills and 17 digs.

Wilberger's Senior Night Performance

Jordan Wilberger notched career-high numbers in kills and hitting percentage on senior night against Wisconsin. The Scottsbluff, Neb., native tabbed 12 kills and a hitting percentage of .750 in guiding the Huskers to a 3-1 win.

It's Routine

A trip to the NCAA Tournament goes along with breathing at Nebraska and this year is no different as the Huskers will be making their 30th straight trip to the national tournament as the No. 2 overall seed.

2011 also marks the eighth straight season that the Huskers have opened the NCAA Tournament at home. In 29 previous appearances, the Huskers have started the postseason on the road just twice, as they played in Kalamazoo, Mich. in 1983 and were sent to East Lansing, Mich. in 2003.

Nebraska, Hawaii and UCLA are all making their 30th trip this season, while only Stanford and Penn State have longer resumes with 31 appearances each.

Tournament Tough

The Huskers have been hard to beat in the NCAA Tournament and their 82-26 record proves it. Nebraska's .762 winning percentage and 82 wins.

Husker Hardware

After the completion of the Big Ten schedule the Huskers were all over the conference honors list. Five Huskers were honored with All-Big Ten accolades.

Gina Mancuso was a unanimous selection by the Big Ten Coaches led the NU contingent. She was joined by setter Lauren Cook and outside hitter Hannah Werth. Sophomore Morgan Broekhuis and senior Brooke Delano were both honorable-mention selections, while senior Brigette Root was honored with the Sportsmanship Award.

Fear the Coliseum

Nebraska has swept the last three NCAA Tournament matches its played at the NU Coliseum since Liberty took the Huskers in four sets in the first round of the 2008 NCAA Tournament.

In 39 all-time first or second round matches in the Lincoln the Huskers have posted 30 sweeps. Nebraska has been taken to four sets six times and five sets just three times. The last time NU was forced to play five sets was in 2000 against South Carolina. Prior to 2000, Weber State took NU to five in 1988 and Penn State did so as well in 1986.

During Big Ten play at the NU Coliseum the Huskers lost just eight sets all season.

Filling Both Hands

With the Huskers winning their 32nd conference title and first in the Big Ten era, Head Coach John Cook now has 11 Conference Championship rings. Cook earned his first as an assistant coach in 1999 under Terry Pettit and has guided the Huskers to 10 league titles during his tenure as head coach. Cook won three straight titles from 2000-02 and then another five in a row from 2004-08.

Fantastic Four

The 2011 senior class has been the latest group to continue Nebraska's winning tradition. The team held Senior Night on Saturday, Nov. 19 during the final regular-season match of the season when the Huskers hosted Wisconsin and the class improved its overall record to an impressive 109-16 (Now 110-17).

The group of Brooke Delano, Brigette Root and Jordan Wilberger has won three conference titles, made one Final Four appearance and led the Huskers to a trip to the NCAA Regional final.

Huskers Add Three for 2012

Nebraska Head Volleyball Coach John Cook announced the addition of three high school players to the Huskers' 2012 roster on Thursday, Nov. 10. All three players rank in Prepvolleyball.com's top-100 Senior Aces.

The class includes outside hitter Kelsey Fien (Bakersfield, Calif.), setter/opposite side hitter Alexa Strange (San Clemente, Calif.) and setter Lauren Sieckmann (Omaha, Neb.).

Fien is rated as the No. 19 player in the country by Prepvolleyball.com, while Strange ranks 46th.  Sieckmann was picked as a MaxPreps Preseason First Team All-American.

Top Digger

With her nine digs in the match against Iowa on Tuesday, Nov. 22, freshman libero Lara Dykstra took over the top spot on the NU freshman digs chart with the 360th dig of her career.

Dykstra is replacing Kayla Banwarth, the all-time digs leader at Nebraska.

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