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September 17, 2009

Volleyball Starts Conference Play with Idaho State and Weber State

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. – Northern Arizona volleyball will open the Big Sky Conference schedule playing Idaho State on Thursday, Sept. 17 at 7 p.m. and Weber State on Saturday, Sept. 19 at 7 p.m. The Lumberjacks went 3-6 in non-conference play going 1-2 in each of their three tournament appearances this fall.

The Lumberjacks finished third at the 19th annual Fiesta Bowl Tournament, held in Flagstaff, Ariz., this past weekend. NAU defeated The Citadel (3-0), the first sweep of the year for the Lumberjacks. The women dropped a close five-set match to Wyoming and were defeated 3-1 by Utah State in the finals.

Nine freshmen and sophomores have seen significant playing time after nine matches in 2009. Sophomore Lexi Sullivan leads NAU with 3.46 kills per set. In fact, three sophomores and two freshmen make up the top five in kills. Freshman Anna Gott leads the team with 4.65 digs per set.

Live Stats and Webcast
NAU will provide live stats at nauathletics.com for each match this week. Live stats will be available free of charge. Big Sky TV (www.bigskytv.org), video streams all volleyball matches played in Big Sky venues. For the second straight year the service will be free, but viewers will need to register at www.bigskytv.org in order to gain access.

NAU Volleyball Live TV
NAU's TV Services will broadcast the Lumberjacks' match against Idaho State on Thursday night at 7:05 p.m. Viewers can see the feed LIVE on the Universityhouse Channel (Dish Network 9411). Check nauathletics.com for further television information. Those wishing to view Saturday's match will have to watch the webcast available through Big Sky TV (www.bigskytv.org).

 


Gott Digs Top Libero
Freshman libero Anna Gott was recognized as the Fiesta Bowl Tournament’s best libero with 45 digs over the weekend, an average of 15 per match. Gott, a native of Mesa, Ariz., recorded 23 digs against Wyoming, the highest dig total of any player at the Fiesta Bowl Tournament.

Campbell Makes it Two
Freshman outside hitter Lauren Campbell was placed on the Fiesta Bowl All-Tournament team, the second all-tournament selection on the year for the 5-8 freshman from Covington, Wash. Campbell led all players in The Citadel win with 13 kills and a career-high .444 hitting percentage. She also added seven digs and three blocks. Campbell had a match-high 19 kills, a .375 hitting percentage and six digs against Wyoming. Campbell put up 12 kills and eight digs against Utah State. Campbell was the only player in the tournament to record double digits in kills all three matches played.

Freshmen Trio
Anna Gott, Kelli Dallman, and Lauren Campbell are the only Lumberjacks to start all nine matches and appear in all 34 sets. Gott, Dallman, and Campbell are three of NAU’s four freshmen who have seen significant playing time this fall.

Dallman Does it All
Freshman Kelli Dallman has shown her versatility this fall in her first collegiate season moving back and forth between outside hitter and setter when Jana Mays-Robinson has been out of the lineup. Dallman has filled up the stat sheet with 57 kills (1.68 kpg), 109 assists (3.21 apg), 66 digs (1.94 dpg), and 10 blocks (0.29 bpg).

At the Trojan Invitational
NAU went 1-2 at the Trojan Invitational co-hosted by No. 21 Pepperdine and No. 16 USC. The Lumberjacks lost 3-0 to both Pepperdine and USC, but posted their second win of the year against Florida Gulf Coast 3-1. As a team, NAU hit .289 against Florida Gulf Coast, its highest hitting percentage to date this season. Sophomore outside hitter Lexi Sullivan was the lone Lumberjack to earn all-tournament honors

Sullivan on All-Tournament Team
The 6-0 outside hitter led NAU with 41 kills in three matches this past weekend. She recorded double-digit kills in all three matches and in six matches this year has finished below 10 kills just once. She posted hitting percentages of .243, .289, and .333 in matches against No. 21 Pepperdine, Florida Gulf Coast, and No. 16 USC. For the season, Sullivan leads the Lumberjacks in total attacks (259) and kills per set (3.64) starting all six matches for NAU and appearing in all 22 sets.

At the Bronco Invitational
Northern Arizona volleyball finished third at the 2009 Boise State Bronco Invitational. The Lumberjacks were 1-2 in three matches over two days with a win over Boise State (3-1) and losses against CS Northridge (3-2) and Tulsa (3-0). The Lumberjacks nearly pulled off a pair of upsets as they were tied 12-12 in the fifth set against Northridge and within two points (22-20) in the second and third sets against Tulsa.

Long Time Coming
Earlier this season, the Lumberjacks defeated Boise State for the first time since 1995, a four-set home win. At that time, Boise State was a member of the Big Sky Conference. The Broncos later accepted an invitation to the Western Athletic Conference departing from the Big Sky in 1996. NAU swept Boise in the 1995 season (3-0 and 3-2) and has since only played NAU twice in the past 14 years.

Tournament Honors for New Lumberjack
Lauren Campbell, playing in her first tournament as a collegiate, was selected to the Bronco all-tournament team. In three matches, Campbell totaled 34 kills, 37 digs and four blocks. In the Lumberjacks 3-1 win over Boise State, Campbell, a freshman outside hitter from Covington, Wash., posted a double-double with a game-high 18 digs, 14 kills, and a .244 hitting percentage. She equaled the feat on Saturday in a 3-2 loss to Cal State Northridge with 15 digs and 13 kills. Against tournament champion Tulsa, Campbell added seven kills and four digs in a three-set loss.

Debut Weekend
Freshmen Lauren Campbell, Anna Gott and Kelli Dallmann submitted noteworthy debuts at the Bronco Invitational. Campbell, from Covington, Wash., posted a double-double with a game-high 18 digs, 14 kills, and a .244 hitting percentage against Boise State. Gott, from Mesa, Ariz., totaled 28 digs in her first collegiate match against Boise State. Dallmann, from Peoria, Ariz., filled up the stat line as well with a team-high .292 hitting percentage, 11 assists, 10 kills, eight digs, and four service aces in the Lumberjacks 3-2 loss to Cal State Northridge.

The Young Get Younger
The Northern Arizona volleyball roster consists of 11 freshmen and sophomores. Junior Chelsea Cheeley and senior Jana Mays-Robinson are the only upperclassmen on the 2009 roster. At the Fiesta Bowl Tournament, the Lumberjacks started five freshmen and sophomores (including freshman libero Anna Gott) and five others saw significant playing time.

Series History
NAU is 26-26 all-time against Idaho State. The Lumberjacks defeated the Bengals last year two times. NAU is currently on a five-match winning streak against Idaho State. The Lumberjacks are 29-26 all-time against Weber State. The women lost to Weber State twice last fall and have not beaten the Wildcats in their last three tries.

Media/Practice Information
The Lumberjacks will practice Monday-Wednesday this week from 2-4:30 p.m. in the Rolle Activity Center. Media wishing to attend practice should contact Joe Scacco at 928-523-6330 or joseph.scacco@nau.edu.

History
What is the history of Northern Arizona volleyball? We're glad you asked. Going back to the old AIAW days, NAU has been a player in women's intercollegiate athletics for 34 years. In its 22 years in the NCAA, NAU has posted nine winning seasons and 15 with double digit wins. The Lumberjacks have reached the postseason 14 of the past 18 years. In 1999, NAU went to the NCAA tournament suffering a 3-0 loss to No. 5 North Carolina.

Idaho State (4-5)
After opening the year 3-0, the Bengals have dropped their last four matches taking just one set in its last 13 played. However, Idaho State has ran into tough competition playing against Arizona State, Utah State, and No. 15 USC. For the season, Idaho State is hitting .189. Idaho State has played all nine of its matches away from Pocatello, Idaho. They are 1-3 on the road and 3-2 at neutral sites.

Players to Watch
Emily Waldron, Sr., 5-11, OH (3.03 kpg, .257 hit pct.)
Jaclyn Hone, So., 5-10, OH (2.96 kpg, 2.04 dpg)
Karissa Legaux, So., 5-10, S (10.13 apg, 1.53 dpg)

Weber State (1-9)
The Wildcats have lost seven matches in a row after defeating Gonzaga (3-2) on Aug. 29. Weber State was in Honolulu, Hawaii last weekend at The Honolulu Advertiser Volleyball Challenge hosted by No. 6 Hawaii. The Wildcats were swept by No. 6 Hawaii and No. 10 Stanford and lost 3-1 to UT San Antonio to close out tournament play. Weber State is 0-6 away from Ogden, Utah this season. They are 0-2 on the road and 0-4 in neutral matches. The Wildcats return seven letterwinners from a team that finished 21-13 and 9-7 in the Big Sky in 2008. Weber State is hitting .154 on the 2009 season.

Players to Watch
Chelsea Bair, Sr., 5-10, OH (3.00 kpg, 2.31 dpg)
Jenna Leggat, Sr., 5-11, OH (2.50 kpg, 1.50 dpg)
Caitlin Penrod, R-Fr., S, 5-11 (4.16 apg, 1.55 dpg)