After compiling an 8-1 record and climbing to No. 8 in the country, the Kansas soccer team will begin Big 12 conference play this week. The Jayhawks host the Nebraska Cornhuskers, Friday, at 5 p.m. and the defending Big 12 Champion Colorado Buffaloes, Sunday, at 1 p.m at the Jayhawk Soccer Complex on the KU campus.
This season, Kansas has received stellar play from senior goalkeeper Meghan Miller who leads the Big 12 in every statistical category for a goalkeeper, including goals against average, saves, save percentage and shutouts.
A balanced offensive attack has been led by junior Caroline Smith and sophomore Nicole Cauzillo, who each lead the team with eight points. Six different Jayhawks have tallied game-winning goals this season. Through nine games, KU has outscored its opponents 15-2.
The Cornhuskers began the season ranked No. 25 in the nation in the NSCAA/Adidas poll and have since posted a 6-3 record. Sophomore Brittany Timko enters the contest as the Big 12 leader in points, goals and assists and was named Big 12 Offensive Player of the Week for the second time this season earlier this week. The Huskers have outscored their opponents 21-7 this season.
The 2003 Big 12 Champion Colorado Buffaloes enter this weekend with a 6-1-1 overall mark. The Buffs have played well of late, winning five consecutive matches heading into this weekend.
Preseason All-Big 12 pick Fran Munnelly leads the team with 10 points this season and Jessica Keller leads the team in the net with a 5-1-1 record with a 0.48 goal against average and an .875 save percentage.
Volleyball Defends Its Home Court Saturday Night
Lawrence, Kan. -- Enjoying its highest-ever national ranking, No. 21 Kansas volleyball continues Big 12 play as it hosts undefeated No. 22 Texas Saturday at the Horejsi Family Athletics Center. The Jayhawks and Longhorns (10-0, 3-0 are both coming off 3-0 home conference wins Wednesday night.
The Longhorns kept their win streak alive Wednesday night with a 3-0 victory against Iowa State. No. 22 Texas, the only unbeaten team in the Big 12, improved to 10-0 and 3-0 in league play after popping into the national rankings for the first time this season.
Kansas volleyball team notched a season-high 71 digs as it swept Texas Tech for its first Big 12 Conference win of the season Wednesday night The Jayhawks defeated the Lady Raiders 30-24, 30-23 and 30-20, to remain 5-0 on their home court.
Texas Tech took a 5-0 lead in game one but the Jayhawks scored six unanswered points to take the 6-5 lead. KU led the remainder of the game by as many as eight but Tech would not go quietly, battling until KU finished, 30-24.
Tech tied game two 9-9 but could not overcome KU's blocking threat. The Lady Raiders rallied back to 22-20 but KU ended the game with a 8-3 run. Game three was filled with long rallies and strong defense as KU notched six unanswered points late to take a commanding 28-19 lead. Once again, setter Andi Rozum ended the game and match with an unassisted kill, 30-20.
Junior middle blocker Josi Lima led KU with 14 kills in 27 attempts and added 14 digs and two block solos in the win. Senior libero Jill Dorsey posted match-high 19 digs for a total of four Jayhawks in double-digit digs.
Senior middle blocker Ashley Michaels added 13 kills (.375 hitting percentage) and combined with Rozum for seven block assists each. Rozum led all players with 39 assists and put down six kills in the victory. Freshman Emily Brown added 13 digs and 10 kills while junior Paula Caten had a career-high 10 digs of her own. As a team, KU posted 13.0 blocks to Tech's 10.0 but out-dug them 71-37.
"Dorsey led the defensive charge (Wednesday.) The difference in the number of digs is big for us against such a tough Tech defense," KU head coach Ray Bechard said. "However, we will be facing a totally different team in Texas. They have much more power and it will be tough if they come in here undefeated. We just have to defend our home court."
Texas leads the Big 12 with an impressive .346 hitting percentage and 1.91 service aces per game. However, the Longhorns rank 11th in the league in blocking (2.22 per game) and seventh in digs (14.41 per game). Texas leads the all-time series 15-4, but KU has won the last three meetings.
Match time is set for 7 p.m. Saturday following the 2:40 football game at Memorial Stadium. Tickets are available at the door.