Game Time...Fifth-ranked Northwestern continues its 2014 season as they play Buena Vista in a non-conference match on Wednesday night, Sept. 3. First serve of the varsity match at Siebens Fieldhouse is scheduled for 7:30pm. Northwestern is 7-1 this season while Buena Vista is 2-3. Watch/listen live to the game via the Buena Vista webcast at the following link: Watch/Listen Now!
All-Time...Northwestern is 5-0 all-time against Buena Vista, defeating the Beavers 3-0 last season in Orange City, Iowa.
Scouting Buena Vista...An NCAA D-III squad who plays in the eight-team Iowa Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (IIAC), Buena Vista is 2-3 so far this season. They opened the year with a loss to Webster and then went 2-2 at a tournament played in St. Louis last weekend, defeating Hanover and Fontbonne.
Lori Slight is in her third season as the head coach of the BVU volleyball team and returns four starters and five letterwinners off a 2013 team that finished sixth in IIAC play with a 1-6 record. It was their first league win since the 2011 season. The Beavers finished with a 17-12 overall record, the most wins since 2005. They were picked to finish sixth in the IIAC preseason poll.
BVU is hitting .165 as a team, putting down 12.1 kills per set. They have 40 ace serves compared to just 17 by their opponents.
Sophomore Maddie Bardole is the top returner after being named the freshman of the year in the conference. She set the school record for kills in a season and is averaging 4.75 kills per set in five matches this season. Freshman Jade Schaap averages 3.6 kills per set and is hitting .202 while another freshman, Emily Matthews, leads the team with 22 blocks. Another freshman, Laura Barry, lofts up 10.1 assists per set and senior Jordan Henningsen anchors the backrow with six digs per set.
Northwestern News and Notes...The Red Raiders have won six straight matches since losing to #6 Grand View (Iowa) on the road in the second match of the year. They have wins over three ranked teams (Trinity Christian, Tabor and Davenport) and are 7-1 this season. Picked to finish first in the GPAC preseason poll, Northwestern returns seven players off a 2013 team that won the regular season title with a 16-0 record. They finished 36-4 and ninth in the final poll.
Northwestern ranks 11th in the NAIA in hitting percentage (.272) and puts down 13.6 kills per set. They have 54 aces and are averaging 1.7 blocks per set.
Senior outside hitter Kaitlin Floerchinger leads the team in hitting, averaging 4.3 kills per set, eighth best in the NAIA. Floerchinger, a first team NAIA All-American in 2013, is hitting .321, averages 3.2 digs and is third in the NAIA with 21 ace serves. Junior Haley Chambers is hitting .233 and averaging 2.7 kills per set playing opposite Floerchinger on the outside. Another junior, Karlie Schut, puts down 2.6 kills per set and is hitting .183 on the rightside. Also a returning All-American, Schut averages 2.1 digs and has nine ace serves. Payton Samuelson leads the team with 25 blocks and is hitting .457 out of the middle while freshman Jessica Van Beek has 15 blocks and puts down 1.2 kills. Brooke Fessler returns as the team's setter after earning All-American accolades last year. She lofts up 11.5 assists per set and is hitting .551. Senior Alexis Bart, a two-time all-conference pick, averages 4.5 digs per set as the team's libero.
Up Next...Northwestern will host the two-day Red Raider Classic this weekend, where they will play Jamestown (N.D.) on Friday night and MidAmerica Nazarene (Kan.) on Saturday afternoon.
# 3 | Rightside Hitter
Senior from Des Moines, Iowa
# 19 | Outside Hitter
Senior from Sioux Falls, S.D.
# 6 | Outside HItter
Sophomore from Sheldon, Iowa