Headlines 2012

June 11, 2013  
Wildcat Volleyball prepares for the World University Games in Russia. Here's the latest from Sports Information.
May 9, 2013  Caitlyn Donahue: Team USA
Caitlyn has been playing on a professional team in Puerto Rico, and now has been invited to train with Team USA in California, as reported by Sports Information. She'll be one of 22 in the group trying out for the team. This is a well-deserved opportunity.
May 3, 2013  Wildcats wrap up spring volleyball season
The Collegian has a nice story on changes and progress made this spring. At this point they're not yet practicing for their matches in Russia.
Apr. 25, 2013  Alex Muff heads south to Pittsburg
Pittsburg State announced today that Alex Muff will do graduate school in her relatively-new hometown of Pittsburg, and will play a year of basketball as a Gorilla. Fellow Wildcat alum (and dad) Kevin Muff, head men's coach, and mom Kim will get to see her play. Have fun, Alex!
Apr. 25, 2013  Dallas Gardner joins the Cats at defensive specialist
Here's a feature on Dallas Gardner, who transferred in January. She's moved to DS, and is adjusting very well.
Dec. 20, 2012  Season in Review
Sports Information has just posted a review of the 2012 season, both as an article and a 30-page pdf that has everything we could ever want to know. I don't think I've ever seen a document this elaborate before. Be sure to check it out!
Dec. 15, 2012  Congrats to our stats leaders
Here are our Top Five finishers in Big 12 statistical categories (all matches played):
   • Alex Muff is #1 in Blocks, at 1.39/set.
   • Caitlyn Donahue is #2 in Assists, at 11.63/set.
   • Kaitlynn Pelger is #3 in Kills, at 3.65/set.
   • Kaitlynn Pelger is #3 in Points, at 4.43/set.
   • Kaitlynn Pelger is #5 in Service Aces, at .28/set.
Dec. 15, 2012  Texas Longhorns: 2012 national champions
Congrats to the Texas Longhorns, who swept Oregon for the national championship in Louisville this evening. (story)
Dec. 13, 2012  Not what I had in mind...
The Texas Longhorns (28-4) will play the Oregon Ducks (30-4) on Dec. 15 for the national championship. I don't have a feel for who will win. We don't especially need the national champs in our conference, but we played them well at home this season.

There's some irony here. Oregon is coached by Jim Moore, our coach from 1994-96. He was lured away from us to Texas, because they quadrupled his K-State salary. Jim was unloaded by Texas after a pretty good four-season run, going .689 overall. He's a very good coach, but so is Jerritt Elliott. I also considered Jim Moore to be a very good motivator. It should be interesting. At least we don't have to watch Penn State again.

Dec. 12, 2012  Kaitlynn Pelger: Honorable Mention AVCA All-American
The AVCA announced today that Kaitlynn Pelger was named honorable mention All-American. This follows her unanimous First Team All-Big 12 selection on Nov. 26. Sports Information has a nice recap of her accomplishments. Kaitlynn has proven to be a very versatile player. She's one of four middle blockers nationally who plays all six rotations. Kaitlynn was named the AVCA National Player of the Week on September 18.
Dec. 8, 2012  Cats #20 in Division I attendance in 2012
A total of 27,343 fans attended our 15 home matches this season, for a Top 20 finish. We had some excellent crowds, but there's room for more in 2013. We finished #3 in the Big 12, behind Texas and Iowa State. Here's our attendance over recent years. Our best attendance in the last 15 years coincides with our Big 12 Championship.

Look here for the Division I attendance numbers.

Dec. 4, 2012  AVCA All-Region teams announced
Kaitlynn Pelger has been named to the AVCA Central Region First Team, and Caitlyn Pelger received honorable mention. Here's the full list from the AVCA, and the release from Sports Information.

Kaitlynn hit .317 this season. She was 3rd in kills, at 3.65 per set, 6th in service aces, and 3rd in points, at 4.43 per set. She constantly turned in digs, with 2.76 per set... second for the team.

Caitlyn ends her K-State career with very impressive numbers. Through Dec. 6, she's 2nd in assists, with 11.63 per set. As of Dec. 3, Caitlyn's #11 in assists in NCAA Division I. She came to us as a defensive specialist, and used those skills to register 2.33 digs per set. To put her contributions in perspective, she leaves K-State in the top 10 in both assists and digs. She'll be remembered as a very versatile player, who could be counted on for consistent excellence.

Nov. 26, 2012  Caitlyn Donahue, Kaitlynn Pelger, Alex Muff: All-Big 12
Well, the Big 12 coaches got that right, didn't they? The head coaches get to vote, except for their own players. Here are links to announcements from the Big 12 and Sports Information.
  • Caitlyn Donahue: 1st Team All-Big 12
    In Big 12 competition, Caitlyn averaged 11.79 assists per set, second only to ISU's Alison Landwehr (11.93 assists per set), who was named Setter of the Year. She is also 5th in service aces. What an impressive career she's had, certainly including the fact that she played defense at first. She's one of two Wildcat players to have 1,000 assists and 1,000 digs. Caitlyn's the first setter to make the first team since Gabby Guerre in 2003, when K-State won the Big 12. She was recently named Academic All-Big 12 earlier this month. Oops. I almost failed to mention that Caitlyn is currently 8th in NCAA Division I in assists!

  • Kaitlynn Pelger: 1st team All-Big 12, 2nd year, unanimous selection
    In Big 12 competition, our junior middle blocker was 3rd in kills, at 3.83 per set, and 3rd in points, at 4.43 per set. In 2012, Kaitlynn was named National Player of the Week two times, and Big 12 Offensive Player of the Week two times.

  • Alex Muff: Honorable Mention All-Big 12
    Our senior middle blocker has had a tremendous role in our success this season. In Big 12 competion, Alex is 2nd in blocks, at 1.32 per set, and 9th in hitting percentage, at .312. One of her goals this season was to play a bigger role offensively, and that focus certainly paid off. In NCAA Division I this season, Alex is currently 22nd in blocks, at 1.41 per set. It's been great to watch Alex's success, as I saw every game her dad, Kevin, played in Ahearn Field House from 1984 to 1986. Alex was recently named Academic All-Big 12.
Nov. 25, 2012  K-State to play in the NCAA Tournament
The good news was announced this Sunday afternoon: #25 K-State (21-8) will play Northern Iowa (24-9) in Lincoln on Thursday, Nov. 29 at 4:30 p.m. K-State's one of five Big 12 teams selected. Here's the announcement from the NCAA, as well as their excellent interactive Tournament Bracket. Here are links for announcements from Sports Information and the Big 12. While the Cats didn't get to host, we got a pretty good deal. Oklahoma is being dispatched to Provo, Utah.

Learn more about Northern Iowa on their volleyball page.

Nov. 21, 2012  K-State Volleyball signs two players for fall
Suzie Fritz has announced the signing Elizabeth Bailey Shurbet and Brookelyn Langhaim to national letters of intent.

Brookelyn is a 6' 3" OH from Highland, Utah. Coach Fritz said, "Brookelyn provides a big blocking presence for us on the right side. It is a natural strength for her that could allow her to impact our team right away. In addition, we are excited about her potential as an attacker."

Elizabeth is a 5' 9" setter from San Antonio. She lettered in volleyball all four years of high school, while earning academic all-district honors. She'll graduate in December, and will practice with the Cats in spring and summer. Coach Fritz said, "She possesses a high volleyball IQ to go along with her play making ability, and is a confident and dynamic player, with tremendous leadership and communication skills." Kirstin Olsen of ESPNHS Volleyball wrote, "This fiery little setter is fun to watch. She is a great athlete and hustles for every ball. The Kansas State commit sets consistently and will be an asset to the Wildcats in 2013."

Welcome to our two new Cats!

Nov. 14, 2012  Iowa State defeats K-State in four
The always-reliable Caitlyn Donahue led with an excellent 18 digs, combining with 36 assists for a double-double. Kaitlynn Pelger had 16 digs, 12 kills and 14 points for a double-double. I'm not sure why that's not a triple-double.

The Cats' hitting percentages in four sets were .036, .130, .026 and .077, for a match average of .072. This is against a team the Cats swept in early October.

Nov. 13, 2012  Eight Cats named Academic All-Big 12
Sports Information has announced that Caitlyn Donahue, Kuulei Kabalis, Kathleen Ludwig, Gina Madonia, Alex Muff, Lilla Porubek, Courtney Traxson and Dakota Kaufman have been named to the academic team. All of these players had a 3.0 or better GPA, and the first seven listed received first team honors, at 3.2 or higher. Excellent work, Cats!
Nov. 10, 2012  Sweep Sixteen!
K-State recorded its first of two victories over Texas Christian today in Ahearn, 25-17, 25-16, 26-24, for the 16th sweep of the season. The second victory? The Football Cats won in Ft. Worth, going to 10-0 for the season.

Looking first at offense, we won't see as many big numbers in terms of points or kills as usual, but we'll see good efficiency. How about Caitlyn Donahue! She had 40 assists, or 13.3 per set. She leads in Big 12 competition in assists, with 12.24 per set.

There was more balanced scoring than usual. Kaitlynn Pelger led with 15 points, hitting an impressive .500 with 15 kills. Alex Muff, who has been tremendous, was next with 9.5 points, hitting .429. Why did I say Alex was tremendous? As of today, she is 2nd in the Big 12 in hitting percentage, at .362! Courtney Traxson had nine points. Kathleen Ludwig had 8.5 points, and Lilla Porubek had eight. The Cats as a team hit .452 in the second set.

Tristan McCarty led with 12 digs. Kuulei Kabalis and Kathleen Ludwig both had seven. A concern on defense is that the Cats only had three blocks.

There was drama in the third set, which ended 26-24. The Cats slipped a bit after a strong second set, but regained their focus. Kaitlynn Pelger said,

"We actually did a drill this week that pertained to a 24-24 set, and I think that helped us out. We were super excited about it, because that is what we were working on. I mean, we do not want it that close, but it went our way and was really nice."
Texas won the Big 12 tonight, since two of their last three matches are with TTU and WVU. Iowa State is in second place, but they still have to deal with Texas and the Cats. If the stars aligned right, K-State could still end up in second place in the Big 12, but we shall see.

The big rematch with Iowa State on Wednesday will be on ESPNU at 5 P.M.

Nov. 7, 2012  K-State outscores KU at home, but loses 1-3
This one was hard to take. I wasn't joking in the headline. The final score was K-State 77, KU 75, but losing the final three sets by two points sealed the deal. Scores were 25-13, 26-28, 24-26 and 25-27.

On offense, Kaitlynn Pelger led with 17 points and 13 kills. Courtney Traxson had a big night, with 15.5 points, hitting a solid .333. Alex Muff, who has been a force on offense of late, hit .556 for 12.5 points. Kathleen Ludwig also had 12.5 points, hitting .333. Lilla Porubek had 13 points.

On defense, Kathleen Ludwig led with 15 digs! Tristan McCarty was next, with 11.

Caitlyn Donahue had a very busy evening. She had 53 assists, an impressive 13.25 assists per set. Caitlyn's #1 in the Big 12 in assists, averaging 12.17 per set in conference play. She's #7 in NCAA Division I, with 11.84 assists per set for the season.

Big picture, it was a very even game, from several points of view. K-State won by 12 in set one, but KU won by two points in the next three. Both teams had 11 blocks. Sideout percentage was 64% KU to 60% KSU. Hitting was K-State .247, KU .229. There were 30 tied scores.

Nov. 5, 2012  Social Media Week
K-State Athletics @kstatesports has announced that Saturday is Social Media Night for #KStateVB. Tweet #KStateVB all this week and be entered in a drawing to win great K-State prizes!
Nov. 2, 2012  #7 Texas too much for #16 Kansas State
I don't know that any team could go into Austin and beat 20-3, 12-0 Texas right now. The Cats didn't manage it tonight, but certainly competed, with scores of 18-25, 22-25, 19-25. For example, in set two there were 11 tied scores and four lead changes, with almost that number in set three. In set two, K-State hit .324, to .349 for Texas.

Caitlyn Donahue had 36 assists. She's currently #1 in the Big 12 in assists at 12.06, and tonight she had 12.0. At last check, she was #7 in Division I in assists.

Kaitlynn Pelger led with 15 points, with 12 kills and and ace. Alex Muff had another excellent match, adding 12.5 points, and hitting an outstanding .455.

On defense, Kuulei Kabalis had 13 digs. Blocking was evenly distributed tonight, and middle blocker Pelger had four.

Texas outhit the Cats, .352 to .207, but led only slightly in blocks, 10 to nine. Texas Coach Jerritt Elliott said,

"Kansas State is very well coached. They are disciplined, they don't make a whole lot of errors and they make you be good. They came out and hit very well in set 2."

The Cats are having an excellent season, now at 20-4, 7-4. Going into tonight's match, Caitlyn Donahue was 1st in the Big 12 in assists, Kathleen Ludwig was 1st in aces, Kaitlynn Pelger was 2nd in kills and 2nd in points, Alex Muff was 3rd in blocks and 6th in hitting percentage. Looking ahead, K-State's #12 RPI and 20 wins position the team very well for postseason play.

The Squawks are up next, at home on Wednesday. As Alex Muff likes to tweet, #catseatbirds.

Oct. 27, 2012  K-State defeats Baylor 3-1 for second time this season.
I rolled in about 10 minutes into set one, as I got caught in a 20-minute post-football traffic jam on Claflin Rd. Thankfully the Cats showed up on time, and as the evening progressed, a tremendous crowd of 2,943 made their way into Ahearn. Kaitlynn Pelger said,
"We weren't sure how many people were going to come (after the football game), and all of a sudden everyone was here. We looked up and everyone was cheering. We always talk about how amazing the atmosphere is here. It really does affect us and how we play. They get the other team rattled and that really helps us."

It wasn't a night of big numbers enroute to the Cats' 25-16, 25-20, 23-25, 25-17 win, but Baylor had no intention of making it easy. Captain Kathleen Ludwig had an awesome night. She came to play, and was obviously having a great time hitting. The southpaw led with 15 kills and 18.5 points, hitting .273. Add seven digs and an ace. Kaitlynn Pelger was next in points, with 15. She led in hitting percentage at .333, contributing 12 kills, and she was second in digs, with 15, for a double-double. Lilla Porubek had 10 points, Courtney Traxson had 10.5 and Alex Muff had 12, hitting .227.

Caitlyn Donahue and Tristan McCarty each had two aces and 11 digs. Caitlyn added 51 assists to her collection. Kuulei Kabalis led in digs, with 16.

The Cats were a bit inconsistent offensively, as evidenced by their hitting percentages of .231, .359, .026 and .167. For the match, they hit .196, to Baylor's .106. Ultimately, they had 71.5 points, to Baylor's 56. Coach Fritz said,

"I thought we played extremely well. We let Game 3 set slip away from us a bit there, but we gained the momentum back and played really well. I loved our transition game. I thought our blocking was tight, and I thought we did a nice job of touching and turning balls in transition. I am exceptionally proud of them for that, because that is something that we have been working on a lot."

K-State is now 20-3, 7-3 for the season. They have a bye on Wednesday, and will visit Austin on Friday.

Oct. 24, 2012  Wildcats serve West Virginia its second loss in four days
Volleyball and Football are both gettin' it done! K-State improved to 19-3, 6-3 in their 15th sweep of the season, defeating West Virginia, 8-15, 0-9.

The box score doesn't look the way it normally does. I think we had more balanced scoring than usual. Lilla Porubek led with 12 points, from seven kills, .312 hitting, and an impressive four aces! Alex Muff, currently 4th in the Big 12 in hitting percentage, had 9.5 points, from six kills and some blocks. Kaitlynn Pelger and Courtney Traxson had 8.5 points each, and Kathleen Ludwig had 7.5 points. Kaitlynn led with 10 digs, by the way. Caitlyn Donahue had six points, two aces and 27 assists, and she was second in digs, with seven.

As a team, K-State outhit WVU .212 to .022. I think it's safe to say that very low hitting percentage came from the Cats outblocking them 11 to five. Sideouts favored the Cats, 62% to 41%.

Let's all go straight from Bill Snyder Family Stadium to Mike Ahearn Family Field House on Saturday, for a 7:00 P first serve, and a chance to see K-State achieve Sweep Sixteen for the season.

Oct. 20, 2012  Cats get by Texas Tech in Ahearn
K-State improved to 18-3, 5-3 Big 12 in five sets vs. Texas Tech this evening, with scores of 25-13, 25-14, 20-25, 23-25 and 15-9. The box score makes the win look easier than it was. Let's look at the numbers.

The Cats outhit Tech .318 to .147, with 65 kills to 52. They led in blocks, 12.5 to nine. Another noticeable difference was K-State's sideout results in the first two sets: 85% to 45% and 64% to 36%.

There were some really nice individual numbers. Kaitlyn Pelger led with 21.5 points and 18 kills, on .325 hitting. Alex Muff, who has been focusing on offense of late, had 20.5 points and 17 kills, hitting a blistering .593!! Lilla Porubek added 14.5 points. She had 11 kills, and hit a solid .320. Kathleen Ludwig had 8.5 points, hititng an impressive .400. Kathleen has been serving great, and recorded three aces this afternoon. Oops! I haven't mentioned Caitlyn's 58 assists!

On defense, Kaitlynn Pelger led with 18 digs, followed by Kuulei Kabalis with 12. Kathleen had nine digs, Tristan McCarty had seven and Lilla had six.

Finally, although this one was too close for comfort, this was K-State's 15th consecutive victory over Texas Tech, and our 21st win out of the past 22 meetings. No wonder their coach was so grumpy this afternoon!

Oct. 18, 2012  Pink Saturday
From Sports Information:
"K-State Athletics is encouraging all fans to wear pink to this Saturday's home volleyball match against Texas Tech to support Dig Pink and Breast Cancer Awareness Month. First serve is set for 3 p.m. at Ahearn Field House, and fans who purchase an adult general admission ticket will receive a free general admission youth ticket.

The Wildcats will be wearing pink warm-up shirts, and fans can receive pink Point Cats signs at the Fan Experience and Sales gazebo before the match. Twizzlers and pink popcorn will be available for only $2 at the concessions stand, and health organizations will be on hand with informational tables set up for fans to visit pre-game."

Oct. 13, 2012  K-State sweeps Texas Christian
Captain Caitlyn Donahue was versatile, as usual, leading the Cats' 14th season sweep. She hit .333, had four service aces and 34 assists. Along with her setting duties, she led the team with 12 digs!

Lilla Porubek led the match in points with 15.5, from 11 kills and .409 hitting. Add two aces and six digs. Kaitlynn Pelger, who's always gettin' it done, had 13 points and 12 kills, hitting .476, and she was second in digs, with nine! Alex Muff had a great afternoon, with 13 points from 10 kills and .400 hitting. She had six block assists.

As a team, K-State (17-2, 4-2) outhit the Purple Amphibians .337 to .238, and led in sideouts, 64% to 49%. Blocks were about equal, at 7.5 to 7.0. Serving was a factor, with 11 aces for the Cats.

Oct. 13, 2012  Alex Muff spotlight video
Here's a very fine video feature on senior middle blocker Alex Muff. It's on K-STATEHD.TV. I'm not sure if it's premium content or not.

In this video, Alex talks about her goal of contributing on offense. It's worth noting that as of today, she's 6th in the Big 12 in hitting percentage, at .311. As to her middle blocker duties, they're just fine, as well, as she's 3rd in the Big 12 in blocks.

Oct. 8, 2012  Cats looking good in Big 12 statistics
Stats for Big 12 contests through October 7 have been released. Caitlyn Donahue is 1st in Assists, at 12.44/set. Kaitlynn Pelger is 1st in Kills, at 5.00/set. Kaitlynn's 2nd in Points, at 5.41/set. (She missed 1st by one hundredth of a point.) Alex Muff's 5th in Blocks, at 1.25/set, and has moved into Hitting Percentage at 8th, hitting .286.
Oct. 3, 2012  Good times keep rollin': Cats sweep Cyclones in Ahearn
My, oh my. Where do you start? I walked into Ahearn tonight confident about a win, and apparently the Cats did, too. By that I mean, they had faith in themselves and each other, and when the score got close... or a little bit behind... they stayed the course, and regained momentum. The result: the 13th sweep of the season, the first win in nine meetings vs. ISU, and a 25-15, 27-25, 25-17 victory in front of 2,060 fans.

I felt that having a strong start was very important tonight. Guess what! The Cats outhit the Cyclones a ridiculously awesome .632 to .053 in set one, which of course means that both their offense and defense were spectacular! Tonight's box score is a thing of beauty. Here's a sample.

Let's start with defense. KSU outblocked ISU nine to four. Caitlyn Donahue, a veteran defensive player turned quarterback, led with 10 digs. Tristan McCarty and Kaitlynn Pelger had nine, Kuulei Kabalis had seven, and Kathleen Ludwig, who's always diggin', had six. Alex Muff led with seven block assists.

The offensive numbers are in front of you, but I'm still giving some shout outs. Kaitlynn Pelger led with 17 points, 16 kills and .556 hitting. Alex Muff and Lilla Porubek tied with 11.5 points, with Alex hitting .500, and Lilla at .391. Courtney Traxson was solid, with .429 hitting, six kills, and 6.5 points. Kathleen Ludwig had seven points. I felt she did a great job serving tonight, with zero errors and an ace.

Caitlyn Donahue did a wonderful job of setting our hitters tonight, logging 38 assists in the process. She was also great on serving, and added the aforementioned 10 digs. Caitlyn leads the Big 12 in Assists, at an amazing 13.10 per set. Tonight she delivered an excellent 12.66 assists per set. Did I mention that Caitlyn's #10 in NCAA Division I in Assists, at 11.92/set for all matches played?

In case you haven't been spending enough time on my site here, I'll remind you that Pelger's leading the Big 12 in Kills, at 4.90 per set. Well, tonight she averaged 5.33 kills per set against a nationally-ranked team. It's no small wonder she's repeated as Big 12 Player o' the Week. "What about points," you ask? Well, Pelger's leading the Big 12 this week in Points, at 5.40 per set. Tonight she delivered 5.66 points per set.

Oct. 1, 2012  Starting strong in the RPI
The first NCAA RPI ranking for Division I is out, and K-State's at #7. Rankings for upcoming opponents are: Iowa State: #44 and Texas: #15. With 13 matches remaining, and 15 wins already, the Cats are in the driver's seat in terms of postseason play. The good news just keeps rolling in!
Oct. 1, 2012  Kaitlynn Pelger: Big 12 Offensive Player of the Week
Back by popular demand... after a week away... Kaitlynn Pelger, ladies and gentlemen. Here's the announcement from the Big 12, and while we're at it, the announcement from Sports Information.

While writing the entry just below yesterday, which was in large part about Kaitlynn's brilliant offensive stats in the Big 12, I thought she should be named Offensive Player o' the Week again. It was a no-brainer, but I wondered if the conference would elect to spread the wealth, since she was recognized two weeks ago today. Nope. They did the right thing, and here we are. How do you overlook #1 in Kills, #1 in Points, #3 in Hitting... and how about her .600 hitting performance against WVU last week?

Kaitlynn is giving well-deserved credit to her teammates, but she is certainly most worthy of this recognition, as well as the All-American status she'll receive in December.

Sep. 30, 2012  Big 12 Stats Leaders
In the links column on the left are two sources for Big 12 stats: the conference's latest complete stats, and my own condensed version. There's good news that I want to mention. (The following numbers are from conference competition only.) Kaitlynn Pelger is 1st in Kills, at 4.90/set, 1st in Points, at 5.40/set, and 3rd in Hitting Percentage, at .373. Caitlyn Donahue is 1st in Assists, at 13.10/set. Also, Kathleen Ludwig and Kuulei Kabalis are tied for 2nd in Service Aces, at 0.50/set. Excellent work, ladies!
Sep. 29, 2012  Big-time performances lead the Cats past Baylor
K-State picked up a significant road win (18-25, 25-22, 25-23, 25-16) vs. a good 13-5 Baylor team in Waco. Of course you'll remember Kaitlynn Pelger from the past 15 matches. She sort of went nuts against Baylor, leading with 23.5 points, resulting from 23 kills, solid .321 hitting and an ace. Courtney Traxson did awesome. In only two sets, she hit .476 for 10 kills and 10 points. When she wasn't busy scoring, she added five digs. Lilla Porubek had 13.5 points and 11 kills. Kathleen "Southpaw" Ludwig had 11 points, seven kills and seven digs. Alex Muff added 8.5 points from seven kills.

Caitlyn Donahue was awesome, as always. How about 57 assists? That's 14.25 per set. Caitlyn's currently 14th in Division I in assists, at 11.67. She hasn't lost her touch on defense, adding 10 digs.

Elsewhere on defense, Kuulei Kabalis led with 17 digs, Pelger had 12, Tristan McCarty had 10 and Gina Madonia had seven in just two sets. Therefore, Kaitlynn Pelger recorded another double-double this evening. I thought she had a triple-double, but not according to the official write-up.

K-State edged Baylor in hitting, .255 to .231, while Baylor led in blocks, six to four. The Cats didn't have a strong start, as they hit 0.00 in set one, while Baylor had .320. To their credit, they kept their composure. In fact, in set four we hit .514!!

Sep. 27, 2012  Cats sweep West Virginia, and Pelger reaches 1,000 kills
K-State welcomed WVU to the Big 12 with a 25-8, 25-19, 25-17 victory, and sweep #12 of the season. The Cats are now 14-1, 1-1, and West Virginia dropped to 8-8, 0-3.

It was another big night for Kaitlynn Pelger, who clearly is on track for AVCA All-American honors, and will be in the discussion for Big 12 Player of the Year. She led all scorers with 14.5 points, coming from 13 kills on .600 hitting, two aces and nine digs. Kaitlynn said, "We kind of came out and put everything out there. We maxed out and it was awesome." There was unusually-balanced scoring, in part I'm sure because of the ability to substitute more than usual. Lilla Porubek and Alex Muff each had 6.5 points. Alex hit .444! Kathleen Ludwig, still having shoulder troubles, had to sub out after set one. She hit 1.000, and had three kills.

Caitlyn Donahue was as reliable as ever, recording 38 assists, an impressive 11 digs, 4.5 points, .333 hitting, two service aces and a couple of really cool, sneaky kills. Gabby Guerre used to do those, and I love 'em!

Let's hear from Coach Fritz now.

"We served extremely well, which we wanted to get back to a little bit and have that be an identity of our team that we can put a lot of pressure from the service line. Then, we were doing a tremendous job of touching and turning balls into transition, which we take a high priority on. You can't block all the balls. It's just not possible. A good hitter will beat a good blocker every time, but we did a nice job of just putting our hands nice and still and strong over the net, getting a touch or a deflection kicked up; and then we did a nice job of managing that ball and turning it the first time or two in transition, which is a priority we've been working on."

"I think it says she's (Pelger) pretty good and getting better. The thing I was most excited about tonight is something that no one really pays attention to, and that was her passing. She got aced the first ball of the game, and she came back and passed terrific the entire rest of the match. She has been a little frustrated with her passing. She wears a little bit of a target back there because of all the things she does. People are going to serve a lot of balls at her. They are going to make her have to pass, hit and play defense, and try to wear her down a little bit. I thought she handled it great. They served a lot of balls at her, but she passed terrific. She's going to kill a lot balls for us. That's just the way it is. She and (Caitlyn) Donahue have a nice connection, which I think allows her to do that. Part of that is Donahue feeding the bear, as we call it. I think she's a good player."

Sep. 22, 2012  Cats sweep again... this time Nebraska-Omaha
Hitting percentage may be the story of the match, as K-State (13-1) cruised by Nebraska-Omaha (5-9), 25-14, 25-15, 25-21, pleasing a Saturday afternoon crowd of 1,523 in Ahearn. The Cats hit a very solid .433, to Omaha's .213. Captain Caitlyn Donahue led the way, hitting .857, for six sills and seven points. Add an ace for good measure. Kathleen Ludwig hit .800, adding four kills. She sat out much of the match, to let teammates sub in. Kaitlynn Pelger had 12 points, from 11 kills and .474 hitting. Chelsea Keating also hit .444, adding four kills. Lilla Porubek had 11 points and 11 kills, hitting .474. Alex Muff also subbed out early, leaving the court with .667 hitting. Dakota Kaufman hit .333.

Caitlyn Donahue had 35 assists. On defense, Kuulei Kabalis led the way, with 14 digs, followed by Kaitlynn Pelger, with nine. The rest of the team shared the remaining digs.

Sep. 18, 2012  Kaitlynn Pelger: AVCA National Player of the Week
It had been 13 years since a K-State player (Dawn Cady Sullivan) was honored, and I didn't remember that the AVCA also picked a Player of the Week. Here's the good news from Sports Information. The Big 12 has their version. Also, K-STATEHD.TV has an interview with Kaitlynn. Just below, you'll find a screen capture of the AVCA's announcement. Congratulations, Kaitlynn!

Sep. 17, 2012  K-State Mask supports the Cats.
The K-State Mask has added his all-knowing support to K-State Volleyball. Here's his YouTube testimonial, posted today.
Sep. 17, 2012  Kaitlynn Pelger: Big 12 Offensive Player of the Week
Well, guess what! The Big 12 is catching on. They've announced this afternoon that the reigning CVU National Player of the Week, Kaitlynn Pelger (see the Sep. 11 headline below), has been selected as the Big 12 Offensive Player of the Week, as I predicted in my headline just below on Sep. 15, after she put the smack down on Dayton, with 19 kills on .654 hitting. By the way, Kaitlynn hit .455 vs. Tulsa to open the Golden Hurricanes Invitational last week. Here are links to announcements from the Big 12, and from Sports Information.
OFFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK Kaitlynn Pelger, Kansas State, MB, Jr., Olathe, Kan.
Pelger averaged 4.18 kills per set while hitting .440 over the weekend at the Golden Hurricane Classic in Tulsa, Okla. She added 2.45 digs and 1.09 blocks, while her five aces led the team. The Wildcats improved to 12-0 with wins over Tulsa, No. 10 Minnesota and No. 20 Dayton at the event. The junior opened the tournament with a double-double as she posted 11 kills on a .455 hitting percentage to go with 12 digs against Tulsa. Against the Golden Gophers, Pelger played a huge role down the stretch as she led the team with 16 kills. She also added nine digs, five blocks and three aces. Four of her kills came in the shortened fifth set alone as K-State hit an amazing .818 as a team with nine kills and no errors to dominate Minnesota in the deciding set. To close the weekend, the middle blocker pounded out 19 kills and hit an impressive .654 against Dayton. She also recorded six digs, two blocks and a pair of aces. Pelger ranks in the Big 12's top 5 in hitting percentage, kills, service aces and points.
Sep. 15, 2012  Cats win the Golden Hurricane Classic, sweeping Dayton
The Cats' success continued vs. #20 Dayton in Tulsa today with a 25-23, 25-20, 25-15 victory. Dayton has a fine team, and the first two sets were competitive, but K-State doesn't get rattled. Coach Grove told Rob Voelker after the match that in the fifth set of the barnburner vs. Minnesota, Captain Kathleen Ludwig (referring to 9 of 10 wins in five-set matches in 2011 - 2012) told the team in a timeout, "We win these games."

National Player of the Week Kaitlynn Pelger led the way offensively with 22 points. She had 19 kills on an astonishing .654 hitting percentage, had a couple of aces and six digs. Who knows... the Big 12 might even make her Player of the Week (after ignoring all the Cats in the past week's honors). Lilla Porubek had some critical kills, ending with nine, and 10 points on .364 hitting. Alex Muff had some tremendous plays. She had eight points and seven kills, hitting a blistering .556. Kathleen Ludwig had six points. Caitlyn Donahue had 41 assists (a spectacular 13.6 assists per set). The NCAA Division I leader is averaging 12.70 assists per set. Caitlyn is #12 in assists in Division I this week.

Kuulei Kabalis led in digs with 13, followed by Tristan McCarty with 10, Caitlyn Donahue with seven, Kaitlynn Pelger with six and Gina Madonia with five.

As a team, K-State outhit Dayton .352 to .155. Although the first two sets were close by score, K-State was dominant in hitting percentage, thanks to Pelger: .415 to .262, .286 to .111 and .345 to .062. In set three, the Cats posted 8-0 and 5-0 runs. Kaitlynn Pelger has to be named Big 12 Offensive Player of the Week!

Confidence, solid senior leadership and great coaching are quite obvious in the best start ever. The Cats' commitment to hard work off-season is another big factor. It's exciting to think what lies ahead this season. Go Cats!

Kaitlynn Pelger was named MVP. Caitlyn Donahue and Kathleen Ludwig were also on the All-Tournament team, which were natural choices.

Sep. 14, 2012  Cats' latest win: #10 Minnesota!!
Before I go farther... David Wiechmann of Sports Information posted a great recap of this match. Don't miss it.

As the Cats have been accumulating wins this fall, fans have focused on this match as a great opportunity, and a benchmark of where we are. So, obviously, has the K-State Volleyball team. This evening, the Cats believed in themselves, even after a 25-13 loss in set 1. They drew confidence from going 10-1 in five-set thrillers the past two seasons, including that barnburner in Lincoln in December.

It was a disappointing set 1. The Gophers outhit .269 to –.172. Sideout percentage was 69% to 36%. But... any volleyball fan knows the second set can be much better or worse than the first. K-State stepped up, hitting .345 to .308, turning around sideouts, 63% to 56%. Set scores were 13-25, 25-22, 16-25, 25-19 and 15-7.

Set 5 was pretty amazing. For example: K-State hit .818 to Minnesota's .188. I'd never heard of such a set 5 domination, because generally if teams go to five, they're pretty evenly-matched. The Cats' sideouts in set 5 were 100% to 50%.

Individually, Kathleen "Southpaw" Ludwig had one of her best career matches. She was a force! She had 18 points, 16 kills, hit .324 and had five digs. National Player of the Week Kaitlynn Pelger led with 21.5 points, coming from 16 kills on .278 hitting, three aces and five block assists. Lilli Porubek had 10.5 points, 10 kills and four digs. Alex Muff had nine points and seven kills, hitting .250. Dakota Kaufman had 6.5 points on five kills and some blocks.

Caitlyn Donahue had 49 assists, and hasn't lost her skills on defense. She had 10 digs.

David Wiechmann reports that this is the sixth time K-State has beaten an AVCA Top 10-ranked team. He also gives us these fun facts:

Minnesota entered the match with the highest hitting percentage in the nation at .366, and was held to .239. The Gophers also brought the No. 1 attacker in the nation in Tori Dixon. Dixon came into this week's tournament hitting .551, and the Wildcats limited her to just .091 with seven kills.
K-STATEHD.TV has a highlights video of the big win. I'm not sure if it's free content or not.
Sep. 14, 2012  Cats' Stat Leaders
Alex Muff is currently 4th in Division I in Blocks. (link) Caitlyn Donahue is 12th in Division I in Assists. (link)
Sep. 13, 2012  Block Party: Cats sweep Tulsa to continue best start ever
How about those Cats! How about nine sweeps out of the 10 victories this season? Tonight's outing (25-19, 25-22, 25-18) may not have been the season's strongest night offensively, but the big story was K-State's 14.5 blocks to three for Tulsa. Alex Muff led with six block assists, National Player o' the Week Kaitlynn Pelger added five, and Caitlyn Donahue and Lilla Porubek had four.

Tristan McCarty led with 13 digs, Kaitlynn had 12, Kuulei Kabalis had 11, Caitlyn had seven and Kathleen Ludwig had six.

Kaitlynn "Player of the Week" (a.k.a. "Double-Double") Pelger and Kathleen "Southpaw" Ludwig both led with 13.5 points. Lilla Porubek had 10 points. There was some efficient hitting. Caitlyn hit .600(!) with six kills. She had 34 assists. Kaitlynn hit .455, with 11 kills. Kathleen had 10 points, hitting .364. K-State led in hitting efficiency, at .214, while Tulsa was held to .083, thanks to the aforementioned top-quality blocking. We like aces at K-State. Kathleen and Tristan each had two.

K-STATEHD.TV has highlights. I think this is free content.

Sep. 11, 2012  Kaitlynn Pelger named National Player of the Week
Earlier today I was grumbling because the Big 12 hadn't recognized any K-State players (now 9-0) after they achieved the best early-season start in the history of the program. Well, guess what! Collegiate Volleyball Update has just announced that junior middle blocker (as if she needed any introduction) Kaitlynn Pelger is the National Player of the Week. K-State Sports Information has their own version of the good news.

Here's some of the release from CVU:
The Collegiate Volleyball Update (CVU.com) is pleased to announce that Kansas State junior Kaitlynn Pelger has been selected as the CVU.com National Player of the Week for Sept. 3 through Sept. 9.

A 6-2 middle blocker from Olathe, Kansas, Pelger picks up the award for the second time in her career as she has the Wildcats off to a school-record 9-0 start.

Playing all six rotations as a middle blocker, Pelger not only led the defense at the net, but she also anchored the back row and paced the attacking, leading the team in kills, blocks and digs through three matches last week.

Starting with a sweep of Missouri State, the junior posted the first of two weekend double-doubles, notching team highs with 11 kills and 10 blocks, also adding seven digs while hitting .304. That was followed up with an eight-kill match in a sweep of Saint Mary's.

Finally, Pelger ended the weekend with another double-double, this time adding digs to the mix. In a 3-0 win over Utah State, the middle had 11 more kills, 12 digs and six blocks. For the weekend she averaged 3.33 kills, 2.56 digs and 2.11 blocks per set.

This is the third time a Wildcat has been recognized with the CVU.com weekly award, and the second of Pelger's career, as she picked up the honor last season.

Sep. 8, 2012  Cats get by Utah State for best start in program history
K-State (9-0) swept Utah State 25-22, 25-23, 25-18 in Ahearn, to lock in the program's best start ever.

Utah State had aggressive serving, leading in aces seven to 0, but the Cats clawed back as necessary, especially in the third set. Our Cats outhit the Aggies .361 to .229, .194 to .119 and .229 to –.061, and had a slight edge in blocking, 10 to eight. Hitting percentage for the match was Cats: .262 to Aggies: .100.

Tonight's box score was incomplete, but my arithmetic shows that Kaitlynn Pelger led with 17 points, recording a double-double on 12 digs (!) and 11 kills, hitting .259. Kathleen Ludwig had 7½ points, and hit a spectacular .667. Lilla Porubek had nine kills, hitting .296, and added five digs. Alex Muff hit a solid .300, with six kills and two blocks.

Caitlyn Donahue had 35 assists and five digs.

It's never a dull moment, as next week K-State will face Dayton (#10 AVCA) and Minnesota (#14 AVCA) in Tulsa. The Gophers knocked off Texas a couple of days ago.

Sep. 6, 2012  St. Mary's sweep + tie for best start in history
That's right. Now at 8-0, K-State has tied for the best start in the history of the program, after tonight's victory of 25-20, 25-18, 27-25. Also noteworthy is that of the eight victories, seven were sweeps.

Senior southpaw, #5 Kathleen Ludwig, led all scorers with 13.5 points. She had nine kills, and hit .600! She had seven block assists and an ace. Lilla Porubek also had 13.5 points and 11 kills. Kaitlynn Pelger had 9.5 points from eight kills. She hit .300. Dakota Kaufman had a solid night on offense, with 7.5 points and seven kills.

Caitlyn Donahue turned in 30 assists, and she had nine digs.

Tristan McCarty led in digs, with 10. Again, Caitlyn had nine, and Kuulei Kabalis had seven.

K-State hit .247, to St. Mary's at .142. The Cats led on blocks, at 13 to nine. Of the evening's defense, Kathleen said,

"We have spent quite a bit of time focusing on those out-of-system situations, and taking advantage of our serving pressure by putting up a better block, and getting better touches so that we can do what we do in transition. It is really exciting, and we feel that we are mindful about it. We can talk about it during plays, and recognize situations to do what we need to do."
Sep. 5, 2012  K-State blocks the way the victory over Missouri State
Until tonight, K-State (7-0) has been averaging 2.3 blocks per set. The 16 blocks tonight equaled 5.3 blocks per set. That may have been the difference in tonight's 25-19, 25-22, 25-15 sweep over Missouri State (3-5), who looked much better than their record would suggest. The exceptional blocking shows in the Bears' modest hitting percentages of .097, .156 and .194, and it marked the fifth-best total in three sets in the Cats' record book. On the subject of blocking, Coach Fritz said,
"Alex has always been our defensive anchor. She blocks the most balls, and she is the most physical player we have at the net. To see her be able to do some of the other things she is doing right now, in terms of the offense that she is providing, she has got significantly better behind the setter attacking and making little plays in and around the net. She is a volleyball player. When she came to us, those were not some of the things she was able to do, and to be able to watch her game really come together is really special."
Meanwhile, the Cats hit .370, .205 and .439, ending the match with .319. Individual hitting performances included Kathleen Ludwig at .500, Alex Muff at .429, Dakota Kaufman at .556, Chelsea Keating at .500 and Kaitlynn Pelger with .304 (and 17.5 points). Caitlyn Donahue paved the way, with 36 assists. She had an ace, four digs and six block assists.

On defense, Tristan McCarty led with nine digs, Kaitlynn Pelger had seven and Kuulei Kabalis had five.

Sep. 1, 2012  K-State sweeps Syracuse to sweep the Creighton Invitational
I was disappointed that I couldn't listen to the match, with the home football opener underway, but what a fine outcome: 25-17, 25-14, 25-16 vs. Syracuse!

There was some concern that Syracuse is a physical team, but once again, the Cats dominated in several statistical categories: hitting: .374 to .253, points: 59 to 34, sideouts: 76% to 47% and kills: 50 to 29. One category that ended even was blocks, at a fairly low four per team.

Caitlyn Donahue may find herself with Player of the Week honors. She had 41 assists for three sets, or 13.6 per set. For the three Creighton matches, she had 118 assists over nine sets, or an average of 13.1 per set. As mentioned below, the 2011 Division I season leader averaged 12.3 assists per set. Caitlyn added five kills on .500 hitting, tossed in a service ace, had five digs and seven points.

Lilla Porubek led with 13.5 points, hitting .391, and led with 10 kills. Kaitlynn Pelger had her usual fine outing, with 10.5 points and nine kills, hitting .438! Chelsea Keating did great. She had 9.5 points, nine kills and also hit .438. Kathleen Ludwig unfortunately didn't play. She's been having trouble with a lingering shoulder injury. We hope she's better very soon. Taylor Johson had 7.5 points, seven kills and .385 hitting. Dakota Kaufman added six points and six kills. On defense, Kaitlynn Pelger was a major player, as usual, leading with 10 digs. Kuulei Kabalis had eight digs.

The second set must have been a barnburner for the Cats. They led in sideouts, 85% to 45%, and outhit Syracuse .324 to .095. As noted earlier, the score was 25-14.

The Cats have a busy week ahead, with visits from Missouri State on Wednesday, St. Mary's on Thursday and Utah State on Saturday.

Bluejay Invitational All-Tournament Team:
Kaitlynn Pelger, Kansas State (MVP)
Caitlyn Donahue, Kansas State
Lila Porubek, Kansas State
Kelli Browning, Creighton
Colleen King, Denver
Lindsay McCabe, Syracuse

Sep. 1, 2012  K-State sweeps their hosts in the Creighton Invitational
You didn't know where this match was going, especially in set one, with six lead changes and 10 tied scores. Creighton has a solid team, and received a few votes in the first AVCA poll.

There were some strong Cat performances, and let's start with senior setter Caitlyn Donahue, who logged 40 assists (13.3 per set). Last year's NCAA season leader had 12.27 assists per set. Add five digs and an ace. Lilla Porubek had a big match, leading with with 18 points, 16 kills and .341 hitting. Kaitlynn Pelger had 14.5 points and eight kills. Along with that, write down a team-high 14 digs! Kathleen Ludwig also had eight kills, and as usual, added digs... seven, to be exact. Alex Muff had 11 points and seven kills. She led in blocks, with four. Kuulei Kabalis had 12 digs.

Set three looked to be a blowout, with the Cats on a 12-0 scoring run, but Creighton came back after lagging behind 18-5. Final scores were 25-22, 25-18 and 25-21.

Aug. 31, 2012  Cats sweep Denver to open the Creighton Invitational
K-State was dominant in several categories enroute to a 3-0 victory, for example, hitting: .293 to .086, blocks: 9 to 3, sideouts: 69% to 47% and kills: 42 to 28. K-State led impressively in hitting percentage. Set 1: .229 to .129. Set 2: .303 to .032. Set 3: .355 to .097.

Alex Muff played a big part in a strong start, hitting 1.000 for a good stretch, and ending with 11 kills, and hitting .500. She led with 13 points. Kaitlynn Pelger had a fine afternoon. She had 12 points on 8 kills and 2 blocks, hitting .429. Add two aces and eight digs. Caitlyn Donahue was awesome, as usual, with 37 assists and five digs. Lilla Porubek was solid offensively, with eight kills, hitting .273. Kuulei Kabalis led with digs, logging 14. Also, 14 is the number of Cats who saw action this afternoon. By the way, Taylor Johnson hit 1.000 today.

Aug. 25, 2012  Cats defeat Oregon State to win the Varney's Invitational
Dev Nelson, who broadcast countless games from Ahearn Field House, would have called this one a "double-barrel, double-dip, deep-dish dilly." Each of the first four sets was decided by two points. K-State took the first and fourth, and Oregon State took the second and third sets. The teams were tied in points after four sets, so the 15-8 set five score was the difference. Here's Oregon State's recap.

The Cats probably underestimated Oregon State a bit. They had a 16-16 2011 season, but wins don't come easily in the Pac 12. Kaitlynn said of the win,

"It was awesome. We did not expect them to be as scrappy as they were. We knew that they would be the better team out of the tournament. We saw some long rallies and heroic plays from both teams. They were awesome. They kept balls alive and they kept us on our toes. We kind of lost ourselves in the third match. They put it on us and we needed that and we came back to win this game."
Let's look at the numbers. Caitlyn Donahue was named MVP. She had 59 assists (11.8 per set) tonight. She had a service ace, 15 digs and 5½ points. Lilla Porubek led with 24.5 points, hitting .275, and Kaitlynn Pelger was awesome, with 23 points on .370 hitting, five aces and 17 digs. Courtney Traxson had a big night, adding 14.5 points off 13 kills. Alex Muff had 12 points, eight kills and six blocks. Kuulei Kabalis had 16 digs, and Tristan McCarty had 14.

K-State outhit Oregon State .224 to .211, and Oregon State outblocked 12 to 9. Oregon State coach Taras Liskevych said,

"First of all, that was a great match. I'm proud of this team, they really fought hard. This is a tough place to play, that has great ambiance. The crowd is into it. That is a veteran team we played led by seniors and juniors that went to the Sweet 16 last year."

Named to the tournament team were:
Caitlyn Donahue, K-State - MVP
Kaitlynn Pelger, K-State
Lilla Porubek, K-State
Camille Saxton, Oregon State
Ashley Eneliko, Oregon State
Aly Squires, UC Irvine

Aug. 24, 2012  Cats sweep Oakland
Oakland University is in Michigan - not California, on an estate donated by the Dodge Motors family in 1957. A famous alumnus is Curtis Armstrong (Booger in Revenge of the Nerds). They're a Division I school, and their volleyball team's 2011 record was 18-11.

There were some fine individual performances. Kaitlynn Pelger led with 16 points, hitting .360, adding four aces and seven digs. Alex Muff's work was more on offense than blocks. She had 9.5 points, and hit an outstanding .500. Caitlyn Donahue, enroute to the MVP award, had 34 assists and six digs. It was great to see Chelsea Keating in there. She added six points, and hit .273. Gina Madonia had 15 digs, and Tristan McCarty had 13. I wondered during the match why it wasn't easier. A look at last year's NCAA records showed that Oakland was #3 in Division I in digs per set.

K-State outhit Oakland .312 to .159, and surpassed them in sideouts, 71% to 47%, enroute to a 25-18, 25-13, 25-19 Wildcat victory.

Aug. 24, 2012  Back in business: Cats sweep UC Irvine
I don't think I've ever been more excited for the start of volleyball season. There's so much promise with this team. Set one, at 25-10, was such a domination that OH Lilla Porubek was called to the sideline for most of the remainder of the match, with 10 kills on .571 hitting! Kaitlynn Pelger also had 10 points, and Alex Muff added nine for the match. The efficiency of set one is seen in the Cats' sideout advantage of 72% to 29%. Set one hitting percentage was .400 to -.065.

As often happens after a blistering-hot set one, the next set was somewhat more competitive, with some Cat starters on the sidelines quite a bit. The outcome was never in doubt, and the final score was 25-18.

The Cats came back strong after the break, even with Lilla on the sidelines, twice as effective on sideouts at 84% to 41%, and a set three score of 25-12.

The numbers tell the story pretty well. For the match, the Cats outhit the Anteaters .276 to .000. Caitlyn Donahue had 30 assists. (She averaged 11.22 per set in 2011... second in the Big 12.) With her 12 digs, Caitlyn registered her first double-double of the season. Kuulei Kabalis had 13 digs. Dakota Kaufman hit .500. I want to give a nod to the fans. Last season, K-State was #22 in Division I in attendance, averaging 1,555 per match. Tonight's attendance was 2,715! A lot of students overflowed to the balcony, which is often occupied by junior high and high school teams. Finally, thanks to the Athletics administration for supporting Volleyball, with a lot of new purple paint, all new banners, a new press box and new scoreboards.

Aug. 13, 2012  AVCA Preseason Poll: Cats #22 (again)
K-State Volleyball is ranked 22nd in the AVCA Preseason Poll for Division I, which leaves them exactly where they were in the final poll of 2011. UCLA came in at #1, Texas at #2 and Nebraska at #3. Iowa State's at #10. Let's make it our #1 goal this season to take care of Iowa State. Here's the report from Sports Information.
Aug. 12, 2012  Sports Extra: Fritz Likes Commitment of Volleyball Team
Mark Janssen takes a look back, and lays out future prospects in this Sports Extra. Coach Fritz talks about the off-season work and commitment the team has shown. While I didn't see much of the team in the spring, I remember being extremely impressed by their focus on April 27, in defeating Missouri during a coaching clinic.
Aug. 8, 2012  Cats officially begin fall training
Our players have been working very hard throughout the spring and summer to prepare for the season that begins this month. They had their first practice today. It's well known that every starter from our Sweet Sixteen team returns, including All-American Katelynn Pelger, and All Big-12 players Katelynn Pelger and Lilla Porubek. Kansas State begins the fall ranked preseason #3 in the Big 12. Check the excellent analysis from Sports Information.

Fans' first chance to see the Cats will be the annual Purple-White game on Saturday, August 18, at 7 p.m.

Aug. 8, 2012  Cats picked third in the Big 12
This is the report from Sports Information of the Big 12's announcement, linked just below.
Aug. 7, 2012  Three Cats on the Big 12 Preseason Team
The Big 12 has announced the All-Big 12 Preseason Team. I'll give you a sneak preview: It includes Kaitlynn Pelger, Caitlyn Donahue and Lilla Porubek. Our three honorees comprise 20% of the entire conference team, and this ties Texas and Iowa State.
Aug. 6, 2012  Twitter Countdown to Volleyball
There supposedly is a trivia contest underway, as announced here by Sports Information. Fans can go to the K-State Athletics Twitter account between 10 and 11 a.m. and answer trivia questions. Has anyone else seen these tweets? I haven't.
July 6, 2012  Season Ticket Referral Program
Here's the announcement of the much-advertised season ticket referral program.
May 14, 2012  Volleyball season tickets are on sale!
I ordered my two today! Here's a short promo video, with the winning point scored against Nebraska in the NCAA tournament, and our awesome seniors Kathleen, Alex and Caitlyn.
May 7, 2012  Good news: Suzie Fritz has a five-year contract extension.
John Currie announced today that Coach Fritz has extended her tremendous tour of duty coaching the Cats for five more years. In her 11 years as the head coach of the Wildcats, Suzie has taken K-State volleyball to unprecedented heights, with a career record of 217-127 (.631) and a combined eight NCAA Tournament appearances.
April 27, 2012  K-State defeats Missouri as spring practice concludes
The Cats have been spending their April Saturdays playing various teams around the region, and today's match marked the end of spring practice.

Coach Fritz held a coaching clinic this weekend. They went all out and put down the court, whereas in many years these April competitions take place up in the gym. K-State had defeated Missouri twice in the 2011 season, both with 3-2 outcomes, and were victorious this afternoon, 25-18, 26-24, 16-25. (They stopped with three sets.)

I'm not sure what happened in the third set, but the Cats looked very sharp to me in the first two. They seemed very focused, and they made some highly athletic moves to keep the ball in play.

I'd like to thank the Cats for all of their hard work this spring semester. I know from reading tweets that they were up very early for weight training, and there was lots of hard work going on. They're going to have a fine season when the NCAA lets them play again on August 24.

April 4, 2012  A successful year for K-State
K-State is one of five schools nationally to reach a bowl game and win games in the NCAA men's basketball, women's basketball and volleyball tournaments.
Mar. 16, 2012  Spring 2012 scrimmage/tournament schedule announced
Sports Information has released a series of spring competitions. On March 31, the Cats will journey to Caitlyn Donahue's school, Blue Valley West. Teams scheduled include Saint Louis, Creighton, Missouri State and Arkansas State.

On April 7, K-State will meet Illinois in Springfield, Mo. Illinois lost the national championship game to UCLA. The two teams will play twice that day.

The Cats will make the quick trip to Kearney, Nebraska on April 21. Participating teams will be Northern Colorado, Wyoming, Creighton, KU and host UN-Kearney.

K-State will host a coaching clinic on April 28 in Ahearn, where the Cats and Missouri will play at 10 a.m. and 1 p.m.

Jan. 18, 2012  Justin Ingram's head coach of SIU - Carbondale
Southern Illinois has announced the selection of Justin Ingram as head volleyball coach. If you're brand new to Wildcat Volleyball, you might not know that Justin spent eight years as assistant coach for K-State. He was our offensive coordinator and recruiting coordinator. He has definitely earned all the success he is having.
Dec., 2011  Big 12 Season Review
Here's a review of 2011 season accomplishments from the Big 12, and an excellent compilation (as a .pdf) of all the statistical rankings.
Nov. 23, 2011  Justin Ingram resigns from Arkansas State
Sports Information at Arkansas State has announced the resignation of our old friends, Justin Ingram and Shawn Taylor, as head coach and assistant coach. Justin had 22 wins in 2009, and 21 in 2011. Justin was named Sun Belt Conference Coach of the Year in 2011.
Nov. 19, 2011  Wildcats Sign Setter from Nebraska (Katie Brand)
Coach Fritz had one recruit to sign for 2012, and she did great, as 6' 1" Katie Brand from Grand Island has been signed to play for the Cats. Here's an excellent report from KMAN.

Katie played various sports in high school, and was All-State in basketball. She will be the Cats' setter after Caitlyn's senior season. It'll be interesting to see if she redshirts. With Ashley Kelican off to Vet School, there's no back-up setter if Katie redshirts. Time will tell. Regardless, she is a tremendous addition to the team.