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Hawkeyes Open Big Ten Season At Home
Iowa to host Indiana and Purdue at Carver-Hawkeye Arena
Junior Emily Hiza and the Hawkeyes open Big Ten play this weekend against Indiana and Purdue.
Junior Emily Hiza and the Hawkeyes open Big Ten play this weekend against Indiana and Purdue.
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Sept. 18, 2007

IOWA CITY - This Week • The University of Iowa volleyball team opens Big Ten play this weekend against Indiana and Purdue at Carver-Hawkeye Arena. The Hawkeyes will face the Hoosiers Friday and the Boilermakers Saturday. Both matches start at 7 p.m.

Hawkeyes on the Web • Fans who can't make it to North Carver this weekend can follow the action on hawkeyesports.com, where a live video broadcast along with Gametracker will be available.

Live video complete with play-by-play from the voice of the Hawkeyes Brian Wilson can be found on the volleyball schedule page of hawkeyesports.com. Gametracker can also be found on the schedule page of hawkeyesports.com.

Live audio will be available for all 31 matches this fall while live video will be available for all of Iowa's home matches. All Big Ten matches will require fans to pay a $9.95 per month subscription fee.

This Weekend's Promotions • Friday's match against Indiana will be "Buck-a-Cup" night at Carver-Hawkeye Arena. The first 500 fans will receive an Iowa volleyball logo cup and can fill the cup at any concession stand for $1.

Prior to Saturday's match against Purdue, Head Coach Cindy Fredrick will host the "Quick-Sets" appreciation dinner from 5:45-6:45 p.m. Pizza and beverages will be provided to season ticket holders with Fredrick to address the group at 6:15 p.m. Season ticket holders must RSVP by Friday by calling the Iowa Sports Marketing Office at (319) 335-9431.

Hawkeye-Holiday Inn Challenge Champs • Iowa defeated Texas Arlington, Ball State and the College of Charleston last weekend to claim the Hawkeye-Holiday Inn Challenge championship.

Win Over the Mavericks • Iowa opened its own tournament with a 3-1 win over Texas Arlington.

The Mavericks took an early 1-0 lead in the match after winning game one, 30-21. The Hawkeyes responded with a narrow 30-28 win in game two to knot the score at one game a piece.

Iowa shot out of the gates in game three, opening with a 17-9 run and never trailed. The Hawkeyes stretched their lead to 24-13 and coasted to take a 2-1 lead in the match.

The Hawkeyes recorded three of their 9.5 blocks in game four to help seal the match. Both teams traded points until the game was tied at 12-12. Iowa used a 10-3 run to game a 22-15 lead and never looked back, as Kiley Fister served the final six points for the win.

Hawkeyes Knock Off Ball State • Iowa defeated Ball State, 3-0, Saturday morning for its second win of the tournament.

Iowa used a 9-4 run to take an 18-11 lead in game one and extended its advantage to 25-18. The Hawkeyes eventually wrapped up the game, 30-23.

Ball State took a 24-19 lead in game two, but a 7-2 Hawkeye run tied the game at 26-26. Iowa finished on a 4-0 run for a 30-26 comeback win in game two.

Championship Win Over Cougars • Iowa took care of the College of Charleston, 3-0 Saturday night to claim the Hawkeye-Holiday Inn Challenge championship.

Iowa trailed most of game one before knotting the score at 18-18. A small 4-1 run gave Iowa a 22-19 lead that eventually became a 27-21 advantage. Iowa managed to maintain its advantage for a 1-0 lead.

Both teams traded points to start the second game until the Hawkeyes went on a 7-3 run to take a 17-13 lead. Iowa kept its lead until the Cougars clawed back to within three points at 27-24, but Iowa held on for a 2-0 advantage.

The Hawkeyes fought back from a 10-3 deficit in game three to tie the match (16-16). Iowa took a 17-16 advantage and never trailed after, taking a commanding 28-20 lead. A Cougar service error along with an Emily Hiza kill ended the match to give the Hawkeyes the tournament title.

Scouting Indiana • The Indiana Hoosiers are 9-3 overall this season.

Erica Short leads the Hoosier offense with 204 kills (4.74 kills per game). Lauren Ditteon has 116 kills (2.70 kills per game) while Ashley Benson has 107 kills (2.82 kills per game).

Mara Hilgenberg has a team-best 550 assists (12.79 assists per game). Benson has a total of 45 blocks (3 solo, 42 assists, 1.18 blocks per game) while Taylor Wittmer has 42 blocks (3 solo, 39 assists, 1.11 blocks per game).

The Hoosiers are coached by Sherry Dunbar. Iowa trails the all-time series, 29-24.

Scouting Purdue • The Purdue Boilermakers enter this weekend with a 7-4 record Purdue plays at Minnesota Friday night.

Stephanie Lynch leads the Boilermaker attack with 177 kills (4.21 kills per game). Danita Merlau has 162 kills (3.86 kills per game) while Samantha Mader has 117 kills (2.79 kills per game).

Jaclyn Hart is Purdue's primary setter with 439 assists (10.71 assists per game). Lynch also leads the team in blocks with 47 (nine solo, 38 assists, 1.12 blocks per game).

The Boilermakers are coached by Dave Shondell. Iowa trails the all-time series, 18-8.

Eskew Named MVP • Freshman Megan Eskew was named the Hawkeye-Holiday Inn Challenge MVP after an impressive showing last weekend. Eskew tallied 33 kills, including a team-high 15 against the College of Charleston. She also hit at a career-high .464 clip against the Cougars.

Redshirt freshman Becky Walters, sophomore Megan Schipper and junior Emily Hiza were also named to the all-tournament team.

Walters Has Career Night • Redshirt freshman Becky Walters had a career-high 19 kills with a .571 attack percentage in Iowa's match against Texas Arlington last Friday. She tallied 18 of her 19 kills in the final three games, including five in game two, seven in game three and six in game four.

Smale Returns to Court • Junior Catherine Smale returned to Iowa's lineup last Saturday against Ball State after missing the previous eight games with an ankle injury. She recorded seven kills along with six digs in the win over the Cardinals.

Impressive Start • Iowa finished the pre-conference schedule with an 8-3 record, including one outright tournament championship (Hawkeye-Holiday Inn Challenge), one share of a tournament title (Northern Colorado Tournament) and one second place finish (Hawkeye Challenge).

Two of Iowa's three losses came against ranked teams (No. 17 BYU and No. 21 LSU) in five games.

Hawkeyes in Big Ten Stats • Three Hawkeyes rank in the top 10 of different Big Ten statistical categories.

Junior Emily Hiza is averaging 4.21 digs per game (177 total), which ranks seventh. Junior Laura Kremer is ranked eighth in blocks per game with 1.36 (57 total) while redshirt freshman Becky Walters is ranked 10th with 1.19 blocks per game (50 total).

Iowa Ranks High in Attendance • Iowa's average home attendance of 989 fans is the 22nd-highest average attendance in the nation.

In addition, Iowa's opening night crowd of 1,584 against BYU is the 64th largest single-game crowd thus far in 2007.

Three Matches on Big Ten Network • Three of Iowa's volleyball matches will be televised on the Big Ten Network this season. Iowa's match against Minnesota next Wednesday along with matches at Minnesota (Oct. 31) and at Michigan (Nov. 3) will appear on the Big Ten Network.

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