Volleyball Home For Three Matches

This Week: Thurs. Sept. 20 Idaho Spartan Gym 7:00 p.m. PDT Sat. Sept. 22 Seattle Spartan Gym 7:00 p.m. PDT Tues. Sept. 25 Pacific Spartan Gym 7:00 p.m. PDT
SPARTANS HOME AT LAST!:  After spending the first four weeks of the season on the road, the San Jose State volleyball teams opens the home portion of the schedule with three matches over six days.  The team hosts Western Athletic Conference foes Idaho on Thursday and Seattle U. on Saturday before playing a non-conference match against Pacific next Tuesday.  All three contests will be held in Spartan Gym, located on the corner of Fourth and San Carlos Streets.
LIVE STATS:  Both matches this week have live stats available on the Spartan website at www.SJSUSpartans.com and go to “Live Stats.” 
BROADCAST INFORMATION:  KSJS, 90.5 FM, the San Jose State student radio station will be broadcasting the Idaho and Pacific matches this week.  Fans who want to listen can get a live stream at ksjs.org.
FACEBOOK/TWITTER:  Follow the Spartan volleyball team and all San Jose State athletics teams on the web.  Become friends with Sammy Spartan on Facebook and get the latest tweets on Twitter @SJSUAthletics.  
TICKETS:  Tickets for home Spartan volleyball matches are available at the door the day of the match or payable through Ticketmaster.com.  Prices are $5 for adults, $3 for youth 12 and under and $1 for club players in their jersey.
ABOUT IDAHO:  The Vandals enter Thursday night’s match with a 3-9 overall record and 1-1 WAC mark, splitting a pair of home contests last week by defeating Denver (3-0), but falling to New Mexico State (2-3).  Head coach Debbie Buchanan is in her 12th season at the helm of the program.  Allison Walker lead the team with 226 kills, 4.43 per set, while Alyssa Schultz is the team’s top blocker with 58, 1.14 ps.  Janelle Chow is the top digger with 203, 3.98 ps. Idaho leads the overall series, 9-6.  The two teams split the two matches played last year, each winning on their homecourt (SJSU W 3-2; Idaho W 3-0).
ABOUT SEATTLE U.:  The Redhawks begin the week with a 6-6 overall record and a 1-1 WAC mark after splitting a pair of WAC matches last week, losing to New Mexico State 3-2, but defeating Denver 3-2.  Head coach Shannon Ellis is in her ninth season at the school.  Kaytlyn Dill leads the team with 144 kills, 3.20 ps, while Allison Farley is the team’s top blocker with 35, 0.78 ps. The teams are tied 1-1 in the all-time series.  The Spartans won 3-2, in Spartan Gym in 2010, while the Redhawks won the first meeting, 3-1, in Seattle.
ABOUT PACIFIC:  The Tigers begin the week with an 11-1 overall record and play at UC Davis on Saturday before traveling to San Jose next week.  Head coach Greg Gibbons is in his third season at the school.  Junior Megan Birch leads the team in kills, 3.96 ps, and was named the Big West Conference Player of the Week.  She was named the MVP of the Marquette Tournament and had three matches with 19 or more kills. Pacific leads the overall series, 39-10, but San Jose State won last year’s meeting, 3-1, at the Hilton Stockton Invitational, the first time San Jose State has won at the Spanos Center since September 18, 1990
SAN JOSE STATE HEAD COACH:  Oscar Crespo is in his sixth season as head coach at his alma mater.  A 1990 graduate, Crespo was named head coach in March of 2007 as the program’s sixth head coach.  He has a 52-106 coaching record in four seasons.
NATIONAL STATISTICS:  Through matches on Sept. 16, San Jose State ranks seventh in the nation in digs at 18.26 per set.  Penn is the national leader at 22.52 ps.  Individually, Michaela Leonard is 28th in assists in 11.3 per set.
LAST WEEKEND RECAP:  The Spartans opened the WAC season with a pair of 3-1 losses at Texas State and UTSA.  At Texas State, middle blockers Mary Alice O’Reilly and Alex Akana combined to hit .435.  O’Reilly led all hitters with a career-best 18 kills and hit .469.  Akana hit .400 with 16 kills. At UTSA, Akana led a quartet of player with double-digit kills with 15.  Setter Michaela Leonard had her fifth consecutive double-double with 50 assists and 13 digs.
PACIFIC TIME ZONE, YES!!:  For the first time this season, the Spartans will play a match in the Pacific Time Zone.  The team opened the season at Buffalo (Eastern), then at Texas Tech (Central), at Boise State (Mountain) and two matches in Texas (Central).  The team will play these three home matches  before traveling back to the Central Time Zone to face UT Arlington and Louisiana Tech.
ALL-TOURNAMENT TEAMS:  Three Spartans were named to all-tournament teams this season.  Hanah Blume was named to the UB Invitational and Lonestar Showdown teams, while Mary Alice O’Reilly received honors at the Lonestar Showdown and the Boise State Invitational.  Michaela Leonard picked up her first all-tournament team recognition at the Boise State Invitational.
BEST BLOCKING NIGHT SINCE 2007:  The Spartans recorded 17 blocks in the first match of the season for the best blocking night in five years.  The team had 1 solo block and 32 block assists against Oral Roberts, the most since 2007 when the Spartans had 19.5 blocks against San Francisco.  Last season, the Spartans had 16 blocks in a win over UC Riverside.
DOUBLE-DOUBLES:  Four Spartans have recorded 18 double-doubles this season. Setter Michaela Leonard recorded double-doubles in seven matches including five consecutive currently.  Hanah Blume has seven.   Samantha O’Connell recorded her first this season against Canisius, while Krista Miller had double-doubles against Texas-Pan American and Southern Utah.
NEW SETTER:  Freshman Michaela Leonard stepped into the setting role for the Spartans this season.  She is averaging 11.33 assists per set which leads the WAC.  Leonard recorded a season-best 52 at Texas State and followed that with 50 at UTSA.  She also recorded her first collegiate double-double with 47 assists and 12 digs against Canisius and has a streak of five consecutive double-doubles and seven on the season.  
O’REILLY MAKING IMPACT:  After spending most of her freshman season as a key reserve for the Spartans, Mary Alice O’Reilly is making her mark on the team in her sophomore year.  She leads the team with 128 kills, 2.98 ps, and blocks with 45, 1.05 ps.  O’Reilly started the year with nine blocks against Oral Roberts and was named to two all-tournament teams.  
BLUME DIGGIN’ THE BALL:  Outside hitter Hanah Blume leads the team with 184, 4.28 ps.  She has collected 10 or more digs in every match this season and had a career-best 25 at Boise State.  Blume has also recorded seven double-doubles on the season because of her digging prowess.
2012 WAC TOURNAMENT:  The 2012 WAC Volleyball Tournament will be held Nov. 19-21 at the Convocation Center on the UTSA Campus.  The top-eight seeds advance to the three-day tournament.
2012 WAC TOURNAMENT SCHEDULE Monday, Nov. 19 (Quarterfinals) No. 3 Seed vs. No. 6 Seed 12:00 p.m. CDT   No. 2 Seed vs. No. 7 Seed 2:30 p.m. CDT No. 4 Seed vs. No. 5 Seed 5:00 p.m. CDT No. 1 Seed vs. No. 8 Seed 7:30 p.m. CDT
Tuesday, Nov 20 (Semifinals) Winner Match 1 vs. Winner Match 2 4:00 p.m. CDT  Winner Match 3 vs. Winner Match 4 6:30 p.m. CDT
Wednesday, Nov. 21  Championship Match 4:00 p.m. CDT (ESPNU)
UP NEXT:  The Spartans returns to the road for two WAC matches at UT Arlington on Thursday, September 27, and at Louisiana Tech on Saturday, September 29.  Both matches begin at 7 p.m. CDT.