'Jacks Conclude Non-Conference Play with Four Matches in Bakersfield

'Jacks Conclude Non-Conference Play with Four Matches in Bakersfield

Roadrunner Classic Information:

Opponent: CSU Bakersfield (Thursday, Sept. 15/7:00 p.m.)

Opponent: UC Riverside (Friday, Sept. 16/1:30 p.m.)

Opponent: UC Irvine (Saturday, Sept. 17/10:00 a.m.)

Opponent: San Francisco (Saturday, Sept. 17/4:00 p.m.)

Location: Bakersfield, Calif.

Live Stats: www.gorunners.com

Video (CSUB match only): www.wacsports.com


FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. - The Northern Arizona volleyball team wraps up their non-conference schedule this week with a quartet of California schools in Bakersfield, Calif. After a non-tournament match versus host CSU Bakersfield on Thursday at 7 p.m., the Lumberjacks will square off against UC Riverside on Friday at 1:30 p.m. and UC Irvine and San Francisco at 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. respectively on Saturday during the Roadrunner Classic.

Ken Murphy's Sound Bite: "These are significant challenges and all four teams that we're playing are good. The challenge of playing four matches in three days is real. What I'm hoping to see is more progress. We've learned a lot so far and now is the time to start applying it to higher level competition that will match the quality of teams in our conference."

Previewing The 'Jacks: NAU swept Bethune-Cookman twice last week to post a successful home opening weekend. With the two wins, NAU's win streak extended to five matches as the Lumberjacks take a 7-2 record into their final week of non-conference play. The Lumberjacks had balanced contributions across the board in their two wins over the Wildcats with senior Lauren Jacobsen and freshman Sydney Lema each totaling 17 kills. Five 'Jacks in all recorded at least 11 kills in the two-match weekend. Jacobsen leads the team with 4.28 kills per set - ranked second in the Big Sky - and is hitting a career-high .312. She is also averaging a career-best 3.41 digs per set, which is tied for the team-lead. Senior Jensen Barton ranks fourth in the conference with 10.23 assists per set and has set NAU to the 12th best hitting percentage in the country at .298.

The CSU Bakersfield Scout: CSU Bakersfield dropped all three of its matches at the Portland Invitational last weekend, falling in four sets to Texas State, Portland and Utah. The Roadrunners are 1-9 this season. Carol Grasso leads the team with 84 kills and also ranks third on the team with 73 digs. Grasso is averaging 3.50 kills and 3.04 digs per set while hitting .154. Fabiana Andrade and Sidney Wicks have split time at the setter position with Andrade averaging a team-high 7.52 assists per set and Wicks posting a 4.78 average.

The UC Riverside Scout: UC Riverside sports a 4-5 record after a 1-2 weekend at the Utah State Invitational. The Highlanders swept Southeastern Louisiana in between three-set losses to host Utah State and Portland State. Mickayla Sherman has been UC Riverside's leading attacker with 88 kills at 2.75 per set. Chelsea Doyle was named to the Utah State Invitational All-Tournament team and has handled setting duties to 8.66 assists per set. Doyle also leads the team with 12 service aces and is averaging 2.38 digs per set.

The UC Irvine Scout: UC Irvine has been battle-tested this season with four ranked opponents, including three in three matches at last weekend's USD Invitational. The Anteaters fell to 3-7 with losses to No. 15 San Diego, No. 7 UCLA and No. 18 Colorado, but they do own an impressive three-set win over then-No. 7 USC on the road during the first weekend of the season.Victoria Dennis has been an effective attacker for the Anteaters, posting a team-high 142 kills on .264 hitting. Dennis is averaging 3.84 kills per set in addition to seven aces.Luna Tsujimoto has anchored the back row with a team-high 133 digs at an average of 3.50 per set.

The San Francisco Scout: San Francisco holds a 4-6 record after picking up one win in three matches in its home tournament last weekend. The Dons knocked off Brown in four sets, but also was swept by St. John's and UC Santa Barbara in their second straight weekend at home.Tyna Adamcikova garnered San Francisco Challenge All-Tournament honors last weekend and paces the Dons with 3.56 kills per set. She is hitting .216 on the season and has totaled 128 kills.Kate Ashman and Marjolijn Oskam has been forces at the net with 32 solo blocks between them. Ashman has 17 solo blocks among her team-high 33 total stuffs, while 15 of Oskam's 32 total blocks have been of the solo variety.

Series History: 

  • NAU and CSU Bakersfield will be meeting for the fourth time in school history. NAU won the last meeting, 3-1, on Aug. 25, 2012.
  • NAU and UC Riverside will be meeting for the eighth time in school history. NAU won the last meeting, 3-1, on Sept. 19, 2015.
  • NAU and UC Irvine will be meeting for the ninth time in school history. UCI won the last meeting, 3-1, on Sept. 13, 2002.
  • NAU and San Francisco will be meeting for the ninth time in school history. USF won the last meeting, 3-1, on Sept. 5, 2003.

NAU Quick Sets: 

  • The Lumberjacks are 50-11 in non-conference play since 2011.
  • Four Lumberjacks led by redshirt sophomore Brittni Dorsey's 18 have recorded double-digit aces this season with NAU ranking third nationally with 2.34 aces per set as a team. Dorsey ranks fourth individually with 0.67 aces per set. Barton, sophomore Jordan Anderson and Jacobsen also have tallied at least 10 aces this season.
  • Freshman Abby Akin ranks fourth in the Big Sky with 1.23 blocks per set. She leads the team with 38 total blocks.

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