Tigers Continue Homestand with Arkansas State

MUTIGERS.COM
<i>Lisa Henning leads the SEC in kills per set and points per set.</i>

MUTIGERS.COM
Lisa Henning leads the SEC in kills per set and points per set.
MUTIGERS.COM

Nov. 5, 2012

Mizzou Volleyball (16-8, 8-6 SEC) vs. Arkansas State (17-11)
Date: Nov. 6
Time: 6:30 pm (CT)
Location: Columbia, Mo.
Live Stream: MizzouNetwork.com
Twitter Updates: @MU_Volleyball
Notes: Notes - vs. Arkansas State Get Acrobat Reader

What's Inside - A Quick Look at the Notes
• Mizzou will continue a four-match homestand with the first of a three-match week Tuesday vs. Arkansas State.
• Mizzou leads the all-time series with Arkansas State, 2-1, and the teams have not met since the 2007 season.
• The Tigers snapped a two-match losing streak with a sweep of South Carolina last Friday.
• Home is a good place for the Tigers to be as they are 8-2 at Hearnes this season and just 8-6 away from home.
• Mizzou hit .342 against South Carolina Friday, their second-best clip in SEC play this season.
• Friday's win over South Carolina was the 400th career match for Wayne and Susam Kreklow as Mizzou.
• Junior setter Molly Kreklow spread an SEC three-set best 47 assists in the Tigers' win over USC Friday.
Lisa Henning cracked the Mizzou top-10 in career points on Friday as she now has 1,333.5 career points.
• Mizzou has the second-fewest attack errors (335) in the country and the third-fewest attack errors per set (3.94)
• The Tigers continue to lead the SEC in blocking at 2.74 per set in all matches and 2.96 in SEC matches.
• As a team, Mizzou ranks 20th nationally in hitting (.263) and 23rd nationally in blocks per set (2.74).
• The duo of Molly Kreklow and Lisa Henning has 25 combined double-doubles, which is third in the SEC.
Lisa Henning cracked the Mizzou all-time top 10 on the career kills list as she is now seventh with 1,182 kills.
• She is the second-fastest Tiger to ever reach 1,000 kills, trailing on Shen Danru.
• Henning is No. 4 on the active kill leaders list in the SEC w/ 1,182. She is the top junior on the list.
• Henning also leads the SEC in kills per set and points per set in league matches and all matches this season.
• Henning, an All-American last year, ranks seventh nationally in points per set (5.22) and eighth in kills (4.62).
• Henning is on pace to break 500 kills for the second straight year, which would make her the first-ever Tiger to do so.
• Henning owns four of the SEC's top point performances in league matches this season.
Whitney Little is 14th nationally in blocks per set (1.47) and seventh in solo blocks (22).
• Little leads the SEC in blocks per set (1.47) in all matches and in SEC matches (1.67).
• Little has five 10-block matches this season. The five 10-block matches is a Mizzou career and season record.
• Little has a pair of block-kill double-doubles in 2012. Before that, the last block-kill double-double was in `07.
• Setter Molly Kreklow is second in the SEC with 15 double-doubles this season.
• In her three years as a Tiger setter, Kreklow has guided the team to a .241 attack clip and 13.37 kills per set.
• The team's .241 clip through her two-plus seasons is the second-best career mark for four-year Tiger setters.

Tigers Continue Homestand with Arkansas State
The Mizzou volleyball team will continue its four-match homestand with a non-conference match against Sun Belt foe Arkansas State on Tuesday inside the Hearnes Center. The match is slated for a 6:30 p.m. start and is the fourth meeting ever between the two schools. Tuesday's match with the Red Wolves is the second in a four-match homestand and the first of three matches for the Tigers this week (they will play Florida and LSU this weekend).

Good Start to November
After a rocky October that saw Mizzou play six of seven matches on the road, the Tigers kicked off November with a big win over South Carolina, snapping a two-match losing streak. In fact, the Tigers swept the Gamecocks behind a torrid offensive output. The sweep was the Tigers' first since Oct. 14 against Mississippi St.

Back on the Offensive
Mizzou had struggled by its standards offensively during its tough October schedule, but it looked to put those concerns in the rearview on Friday against South Carolina. In fact, Mizzou posted 50 kills, a three-set team-best this season, and hit .342, its second-best clip during SEC play this season.

Henning Puts Together Great October
Junior All-American Lisa Henning put together quite the October this year, averaging 5.11 kills per set, 5.76 points per, 0.81 blocks per set and 3.33 digs per set. She has also posted five double-doubles in seven matches and went over 20 kills in four of seven matches last month, including a career-best 27 at Auburn. In her career, she is averaging 4.71 kills per set on .242 hitting, 2.64 digs per set, 36 blocks and 18 aces in October. She began November with 17 kills and 10 digs in the Tigers' 3-0 sweep of South Carolina on Friday.

Kreklow-Henning are a Double-Double Double-Duo
So far this season, Mizzou as a team has posted 29 double-doubles as a team, but the junior duo of Molly Kreklow and Lisa Henning has accounted for 25 of those 29. In fact, Kreklow ranks second in the SEC with 15 double-doubles while Henning has nine of her 10 double-doubles in SEC play, ranking her fourth in the SEC in league matches. Both Kreklow and Henning have posted double-doubles in seven of the last eight matches and the 25 combined double-doubles ranks third among all SEC duos this season (UT's Robinson-Pollmiller, 29; Arkansas' Santos-Norton, 26).

Last Time Out
After spending six of its last seven and four straight matches on the road, the Mizzou volleyball team opened a four-match homestand with a 3-0 sweep of South Carolina on Friday night (Nov. 2) at the Hearnes Center. Mizzou was dominant in its only match of the weekend, sweeping its SEC East rival 25-22, 25-19, 28-26. The Tiger offense was as good as it has been all season as they posted a three-set season-best 50 kills on .342 hitting, their second-best average in SEC play. Junior setter Molly Kreklow was sensational in the win, spreading an SEC three-set best 47 assists in the win, averaging 15.67 helpers per set. She also corralled a match-high 13 digs, good for 4.33 digs per set as she posted her 15th double-double of the season and her 10th in SEC play, the latter of which is a league-best. Lisa Henning had 17 kills on .289 hitting with 10 digs, good for her ninth double-double of the season while sophomore middle hitter Whitney Little was also very good with 12 kills on 18 errorless attacks with two aces and five blocks (one solo, four assists).

Tigers In the National Rankings
As Mizzou enters the final month of play, several Tigers rank among the national elite in certain categories. First, as a team, Mizzou ranks 20th nationally in hitting (.263) and 23rd in blocking (2.74 per set). Also, sophomore Whitney Little and junior Lisa Henning also rank among the national elite. Below is a look.

Cutting Down the Errors
Heading into Tuesday's match with Arkansas, Mizzou ranks second in the SEC in hitting at .263 and a key reason for that mark is the Tigers' ability to cut down on attack errors. In fact, Mizzou has the second-fewest attack errors in the country so far this season and is averaging just 3.94 errors per set. In fact, only BYU and Texas have fewer attack errors per set than the Tigers this season. Below is a look at the standings.
    • Texas - 296 errors - 23 matches - 3.79 per set
    • Mizzou - 323 errors - 23 matches - 3.94 per set
    • BYU - 324 errors - 25 matches - 3.72 per set
    • Washington - 340 errors - 23 matches - 4.14 per set
    • Florida - 340 errors - 23 matches - 4.19 per set
    • Nebraska - 363 errors - 23 matches - 4.22 per set
Henning Joins Elite Company
Junior All-American Lisa Henning has been rewriting the Mizzou record books since her freshman season and she just joined elite company earlier this season as she cracked the all-time Mizzou top 10 in career kills with 1,182 in her two-plus seasons at Mizzou as she now ranks seventh all-time. She is on pace to become the first-ever Tiger to post 500 kills in back-to-back seasons as well. Following this season, she should be within striking distance of the all-time record holder, Shen Danru (1,658 kills from 2002-05). She also cracked the Mizzou all-time top 10 in career points last Friday as she is currently 10th with 1,333.5 in her career. Below are a few notables on Henning.
    • First Tiger underclassman ever to be named All-American (third team last year) and is Mizzou's sixth All-American
    • Led the Big 12 in kills, kills per set and points per set in league matches last season, the first Tiger to do so
    • Currently leads the SEC in kills per set and points per set in all matches and league matches
    • Is currently fourth in the SEC among active players in career kills and is the top junior on the list
    • Recently broke into the 1,000-kill club, the 11th Tiger to do so.
    • She is the second-fastest Tiger ever to 1,000 career kills (four-year players).
    • Is on pace to shatter that all-time career kills record at Mizzou, currently held by Shen Danru
    • Set a Mizzou record with 523 kills in 2011 and is on pace to break 500 again this season
    • Preseason All-SEC Team member
    • Three-time Big12/SEC Player of the Week in her career
Block This Way
Looking at the season stats for the Tigers, the one thing that stands out is the Tigers' blocking numbers. In fact, Mizzou leads the SEC with its 2.74 blocks per set average while its 232.5 total blocks leads the SEC as well. The 2.74 blocks per set clip ranks the Tigers 23rd nationally. The numbers are even better in SEC play as the Tigers are averaging 2.96 blocks per set with a league-leading 154.0 total blocks.

Little Playing Big
Another developing trend for the Tigers this season is the play of sophomore middle hitter Whitney Little. Little has five 10-block matches this season, resetting the Mizzou record for 10-block matches in a career. The previous record had been four by former Tiger All-American Christi Myers - keep in mind, Little broke that career mark in a span of just nine matches after posting 11 blocks at Tennessee on Oct. 5. Below are a few notables on Little.

    • Little is 14th nationally in blocks per set (1.47) and leads the SEC overall and in league matches
    • Little is also seventh nationally in solo blocks (22)
    • She had five 10-block matches over nine matches. That reset the school record for career 10-block matches
    • Little has two block-kill doubles this season; the last block-kill double-double for MU was back in `07
    • Little matched the rally scoring school record with five solo blocks at Florida
    • Little sits atop the all-time Mizzou career records in blocks per set (1.24) and is fourth in hitting (.317)
    • Little could reset her own single season blocking record (138). She is on pace for more than 160 blocks
    • Little owns the SEC's top five blocking marks this season and leads the SEC in blocking

Tigers Second in SEC, 20th Nationally in Hitting
Heading into the weekend, Mizzou ranks among the national elite in team hitting percentage at .263, ranking it second in the SEC and 20th nationally. If the season ended today, the .263 clip would be the fourth-best attack clip in program history, trailing only the 2005 team (.299), the 2000 team (.289) and the 2002 team (.280).

Kreklow Improves Hitting
Heading into the season, junior setter Molly Kreklow was more known for her ability to run an offense, but it has been her offensive production that has caught the eye of many this season. In addition to guiding the team to a .263 attack percentage, Kreklow also proved to be a formidable attacker, posting 91 kills on just 190 attacks with just 19 errors, good for a .379 clip. Kreklow entered the season as a .179 career attacker, so her .379 clip is a vast improvement.

Home Sweet Home
A return to the friendly confines of the Hearnes Center may be just what the doctor ordered after Mizzou went 3-4 in October, playing six of those seven on the road. In fact, Mizzou has been very good at home this season, posting a 8-2 record with its only losses coming to nationally-ranked Michigan and Texas A&M, which is receiving votes in the AVCA Top 25 poll. Conversely, Mizzou is just 8-6 away from Hearnes this season. The Tigers play five of their final seven matches at home, including their current four-match homestand.

Scouting Arkansas State
At 17-11 and 7-5 in the Sun Belt, Arkansas State will pose a tough test for the Tigers on Tuesday. In fact, the Red Wolves average 14.03 kills per set as they boast a very well-balanced offense that is led by Jasmine Terry, who averages a team-best 3.44 kills per set with 341 total kills. But she is far from the only dangerous hitter for ASU. Kelsie Hodges averaged 2.53 kills per set on .330 hitting while three other regulars all average more than 2.00 kills per set. Allison Kearney is the team's setter and she averages 11.08 assists per set and also averages 2.98 kills per set. The back row is anchored by libero Megan Baska who lead the team with 429 digs on the season. As a unit, the Red Wolves pull in 15.13 digs per set this season. The block on paper is where the Red Wolves could use improvement as they average just 1.83 blocks per set as not one player averages more than 1.00 blocks per set this season. The Red Wolves also have low ace numbers, averaging just 0.88 aces per set this season. However, the Red Wolves are very hard to ace, having been aced just 83 times in 2012.

Series Information
Mizzou and Arkansas State have met three times in history with Mizzou holding a 2-1 lead in the series. The two met in Oxford, Miss., in 2007 with Mizzou claiming a 3-0 win. Current coordinator of volleyball operations Weiwen Wang had six kills on .500 hitting in that win at against Arkansas State. Before then, the last meeting was in 2004 with Mizzou earning a 3-1 win. Current assistant coach Lindsey Hunter had 63 assists, five kills and six digs in that match. Arkansas State's only win in the series came back in 1988, a 3-1 win in Jonesboro

A Libero Change
Before the match with No. 17 Tennessee on Sept. 12, Mizzou head coach Wayne Kreklow made a lineup change as he moved sophomore Sarah Meister to the starting libero position, replacing Jade Hayes. The move came after Hayes had pulled in double-digit digs in nine of the Tigers' first 10 matches. But Meister has made an immediate impact since throwing on the opposite-colored jersey, averaging 4.46 digs per set, fourth-best in the SEC. Before the change, Meister was averaging just 1.85 digs per set and a .941 serve receive mark. She has posted at least 20 digs in six of her 13 matches as libero, including a career-best 27 at LSU and 23 in her first-ever start at libero against No. 17 Tennessee. In matches at Tennessee and Alabama in early October, Meister pulled in 48 digs (24 at both Tennessee and Alabama) and committed just two reception errors on 60 chances, good for a team-best 9.67 reception percentage. At Ole Miss and Auburn, she had 43 digs (4.22 per set) and boasted a .966 serve receive percentage on a team-high 59 chances

Historic First Two Seasons for Kreklow
Junior setter Molly Kreklow has accomplished a lot in her short career at Mizzou and the numbers show it. In fact, Kreklow has quarterbacked the Tigers to a 43-24 record (.657) over the past two seasons and a pair of NCAA Tournament wins (2-2 overall record, including a Sweet 16 appearance). The 43 wins for the Tigers over the last two seasons are the most for a Tiger setter since All-American and current assistant coach Lindsey Hunter won 45 matches from 2002-03. Kreklow already has more NCAA Tournament wins than Hunter did through her first two seasons. Also, Kreklow set the Tigers to a .232 attack percentage in her first two seasons, the Tigers' best two-year attack percentage since 2004-05, when Hunter led the team to a .292 clip over those two seasons. Kreklow now has 59 wins in her two-plus seasons.

Ms. 3,000
The Tigers have certainly had their fair share of great setters under the direction of Wayne and Susan Kreklow, but Molly Kreklow may be the best. At Morehead State, Kreklow passed the 3,000-assist mark in her career, making her just the fifth Tiger to do so. It is worth noting that if Kreklow played in 30-point sets like her predecessors, she would be on pace to break Lindsey Hunter's school record for career assists (6,097) by 471. She has assisted on nearly 83-percent of the Tigers' kills since joining the team for the 2010 season.

A Look at Kreklow Historically
Through her two-plus seasons at Mizzou, Molly Kreklow has guided the team to a .241 attack percentage and 13.37 kills per set. If you average out the rest of the year at the current pace the Tigers are attacking at right now, Kreklow will have guided Mizzou to a .252 attack percentage in her three seasons. That is the second-best mark for any three-year Tiger setter in program history, trailing only Lindsey Hunter, who guided Mizzou to a .263 attack clip in her first three seasons at Mizzou (2002-04). She has assisted on nearly 83-percent of the Tigers' kills in her two-plus seasons.

Henning Top Junior in SEC
Looking deeper into Lisa Henning's numbers so far, her 1,182 career kills are fourth among active SEC players and tops among SEC juniors, just ahead of Tennessee's Kelsy Robinson. The three players ranked ahead of Henning on the list are all seniors as Arkansas' Jasmine Norton leads all active SEC players in kills. Remember, Henning was the first ever Tiger to leads the Big 12 in kills per set and points per set a season ago and broke the school record with 523 kills and could become the first ever Tiger to post back-to-back 500-kill seasons as she is on pace to this year.

More on the Tiger Junior Class
With 43 wins through their first two seasons, the Mizzou junior class (Kreklow, Henning) has the chance to become the winningest class in program history with almost two full seasons remaining. If you discount the years from 1974-1981 when a volleyball season featured close to 60 matches (as opposed to today's schedule which features closer to 35 matches per season), the Tiger junior class has a chance to become the winningest four-year class during the modern scheduling era in program history. With a win last week, the class now has 59 wins in two-plus seasons. Below is a look at the winningest four-year stretches in program history (modern scheduling era).

    Winningest Four-Year Stretches
    • 2002-05 - 90 wins
    • 2002-04 - 89 wins
    • 1982-85 - 84 wins
    • Mizzou Junior Class - 59 wins
Tigers Picked Fourth in SEC East
The Tigers, in the their first SEC Preseason Poll, were picked to finish fourth in the Eastern Division by the league's coaches. The loaded SEC East features league favorite Tennessee, Kentucky and Florida, all of which rank ahead of Mizzou. The Gators narrowly edged the Tigers in the poll for third place. The Tigers received 37 votes in the poll while Tennessee (12), UK (30) and Florida (35) edged the Tigers.

Kreklow, Henning Land on All-SEC Preseason Team
The Mizzou volleyball program may be new to the Southeastern Conference, but it has already earned the respect of its peers as the Tigers placed two student-athletes on the Preseason All-SEC Team, which was released on Aug. 7. Juniors Lisa Henning and Molly Kreklow were named to the nine-person All-SEC Preseason Team. Mizzou joined Kentucky and league-favorite Tennessee as the only teams to place two players on the All-SEC Preseason Team. Henning is fifth among active SEC players with 789 kills in her career.

Kreklows Participate in USA Volleyball A-2 Program Over the Summer
Junior Molly Kreklow and Mizzou head coach Wayne Kreklow spent 10 days during the summer in Columbus, Ohio, for the USA Volleyball A-2 Program - Molly as a player and Wayne as a coach, albeit of different teams. Wayne coached the Blue Team to a perfect 3-0 record in pool play, but his team lost a semifinal matchup, dropping it to the third-place match, which it won, 3-2 (25-20, 22-25, 25-18, 23-25, 15-11) over Molly's Red Team.

Little, O'Brien Play Together in Italy, Croatia
Sophomores Whitney Little and Katie O'Brien played with the USA Development/Bring-It Promotions tour in Italy and Croatia this summer. The Tiger duo played with some of the nation's most talented underclassmen over the week-long tour and their team played in the European Global Challenge. It marks the third straight season that Mizzou has had a student-athlete play in the program. Former Tiger Julianna Klein played in Brazil prior to the 2010 season while current Tiger junior Lisa Henning played in China prior to the 2011 season.

An Experienced Youthful Group
It is a well known fact that Mizzou was the youngest team (% of underclassmen) to qualify for the NCAA Tournament last season, but heading into 2012, the Tigers boast a roster that is comprised of 10 underclassmen and two juniors, making them the youngest team in the SEC. In fact, Mizzou's roster is 83-percent underclassmen and it is the only SEC roster that does not have a senior. Mississippi State is the next-youngest team in the league as it is comprised of 76.9-percent underclassmen. What is impressive about the Tigers' youth is that they are a very experienced group as well as seven of the 10 underclassmen are sophomores and helped guide Mizzou to the NCAA Tournament as freshmen last year.

Big Crowds at Home
So far this season, the Hearnes Center has proved to once again be one of the toughest places to play in the country as Mizzou is 7-2 inside the confines of their home arena. In fact, Mizzou is 1-1 against top-25 teams as well with its only losses coming to No. 23 Michigan and Texas A&M, an RPI top-30 team. So far, Mizzou is averaging 2,199 fans per match this season, ranking it 15th in the country.

Tigers On Television
The Mizzou volleyball program will be televised nationally four times, including a program-high three times on ESPNU this season. In all, the Tigers have six scheduled televised matches that will be seen throughout the state of Missouri this season. Below are the television dates for the Tigers.

    • Sept. 12 vs. Tennessee - ESPNU
    • Oct. 14 vs. Mississippi State - ESPNU
    • Oct. 19 at Ole Miss - SportSouth
    • Oct. 24 - at Georgia - ESPNU
    • Nov. 2 - vs. South Carolina - Mizzou Sports Network
    • Nov. 21 - vs. Kentucky - Metro Sports
Volleyball on the Air
If you can't be at the Tigers' matches this season, you can still catch all of the action at MUTigers.com as all of the matches will be streamed with audio and home matches will have video and audio. Jim Grundy will be in his second year as the team's play-by-play announcer. Brittney Brimmage will provide analysis. Visit MUTigers.tv for broadcasts.

Up Next
Mizzou will return home to host Florida and LSU this weekend at the Hearnes Center. Mizzou's match with Florida will begin at 6:30 p.m. Friday while it match with LSU will begin at 1 p.m. Sunday. For all the latest on Mizzou volleyball be sure to check back to MUTigers.com and follow the team on twitter @MU_Volleyball.

 

 

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