Boise State Begins Western Athletic Conference Play at San Jose State, Hawaii


BOISE, Idaho After picking up their first two wins of the season, the Boise State volleyball team will prep for their first Western Athletic Conference matches of 2008. In three tournaments the Broncos have posted a 2-7 record, with a 2-1 record at their most recent tournament, the InnTowner Invitational hosted by Wisconsin. Now finished with early season tournaments, the Broncos look forward to regular season matches, including 16 WAC matches and two non-conference matches.


 The Broncos kick-off their WAC schedule on the road, traveling first to San Jose, Calif., to face San Jose State University on Thursday, Sept. 18 at 8 p.m. (Mountain Time). They finish up the weekend in Honolulu, Hawaii where they take on the No. 7-ranked University of Hawaii in an 11 p.m. (Mountain Time) match.


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About the Boise State Broncos:

The Broncos come off a weekend of 2-1 efforts, defeating IUPUI and Central Michigan, but falling to #23 BYU. Sophomore Sadie Maughan was named to the InnTowner All-Tournament Team for her excellent play throughout the tournament.


Now with two wins under their belts, the Broncos head into one of their toughest WAC road trips of the season. Boise State ranks No. 7 in the WAC with their 2-7 record (.222), but lead the WAC in blocking with a 2.79 per set average. The Broncos also hold the No. 3 spot in opponent hitting percentage, holding their opposition to only a .199 percentage. As a team, Boise State sits at No. 6 in the WAC for digs (12.67 per set) and No. 7 in service aces (1.03 per set). Nationally, the Broncos hold the No. 15 spot in NCAA Division I for blocks per set (2.79).


Individually, freshman Lydia Blaha is the only Bronco to hold a national ranking in the top-50, sitting at No. 24 in Division I for blocks per set. In the WAC, Blaha holds the Broncos’ highest mark as well, ranking No. 3 in blocks per set with 1.34. Sophomore Sadie Maughan holds the No. 6 spot in hitting percentage (.306) in the WAC, while senior Mandy Klein ranks No. 7 for assists per set (8.55). Also holding a No. 7 spot, sophomore Lauren Hamm has 3.47 digs per set while sophomore Alisha King has .28 aces per set to hold a No. 9 ranking in the WAC.


About the San Jose State Spartans:

Entering the weekend with a 4-6 (.400) record, the Spartans hold the No. 5 spot in the WAC team standings this week. In their matches this week, the Spartans finished 2-1 at the Loyola Marymount Tournament, first defeating UC Irvine, 3-1, falling to Loyola Marymount, 3-1, and defeating Pittsburgh, 3-0.


A strong team offensively, the Spartans hold the No. 2 spot in the WAC for hitting percentage (.241) while sitting at No. 3 for assists per set (12.05) and kills per set (12.97).


Individually, the Spartans’ Colleen Burke sits at No. 5 in hitting percentage (.329) while Kelly Crow is at No. 10 (.266). Emily Burke holds the No. 4 spot in assists per set (9.81) while Kristal Tsukano ranks No. 9 for digs per set (3.21). Crow also holds the No. 7 spot for kills per set (3.18) while sitting at No. 9 for points per set (3.41) while teammate Niki Clement holds the No. 10 spot in the same category with 3.32 points per set.


San Jose State leads the all-time series with a 14-2 record over the Broncos. SJSU has won the past six consecutive matches, including a 3-2 win over Boise State on Oct. 25, 2007.


About the University of Hawaii Rainbow Wahine:

The Rainbow Wahine enter the week with a No. 7 NCAA Division I ranking, including a No. 5 ranking in kills per set (14.59), a tie for No. 3 in assists per set (13.72),  a No. 15 spot in hitting percentage (.288) and No. 50 in match win-loss percentage (.788) amongst Division I teams. After defeating Saint Mary’s, 3-0, Pacific, 3-0, and No. 9 Washington, 3-2, at home in the Chevron Rainbow Wahine Invitational, the Rainbow Wahine hold a 7-2 (.778) record.


As a team, Hawaii leads the WAC in the team standings. They also lead the conference in hitting percentage (.288), assists per set (13.72) and kills per set (14.59). They also hold the No. 3 spot in aces per set (1.25) and digs per set (14.16). Hawaii also holds the No. 5 spot in blocks per set (2.33) and the No. 6 spot for opponent hitting percentage (.210).


Individually, Hawaii has numerous athletes in the WAC rankings. In hitting percentage, Hawaii ranks No. 1 (Nickie Thomas, .421), No. 2 (Amber Kaufman, .354), No. 4 (Stephanie Ferrell, .330), No. 8 (Kanai Herring, .291), and No. 9 (Aneli Cubi-Otineru, .269). Dani Mafua ranks No. 2 in assists per set (10.90) while Thomas holds the No. 7 spot in blocks per set (1.04). Jamie Houston ranks No. 2 in points per set (4.41) while Herring holds the No. 5 spot (3.98). In kills per set, Houston holds the No. 2 spot (3.89) while Herring ranks No. 6 (3.52). Kaufman leads the conference in aces per set (.61), while Herring (3.23) and Tara Hittle (3.09) rank No. 8 and No. 10, respectively, in digs per set. Hawaii has three players ranked nationally. Kaufman holds the No. 20 spot in aces per set (.61), Mafua is No. 31 in assists per set (10.9) and Houston is No. 43 in kills per set (3.89)


In the all-time series between Hawaii and Boise State, the Rainbow Wahine hold a perfect 16-0 record. Their most recent win over the Broncos came on Nov. 15, 2007 when they defeated Boise State, 3-0, in the quarterfinal round of the WAC Tournament.


Match Times:

Thursday, Sept. 18 Boise State at San Jose State, 8 p.m. (MT)

Saturday, Sept. 20 Boise State at Hawaii, 11 p.m. (MT)



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