Montana at North Dakota
Thurs., Oct. 24- 7pm
TV: Midco Sports Network/Fox College Sports Central (623 DirecTV)
Live Stats: UNDSports.com
Montana State at North Dakota
Thurs., Oct. 26- 4pm
Live Stats: UNDSports.com
North Dakota will start the second half of the Big Sky Conference schedule this week, hosting Montana and Montana State. UND goes into the week atop the league by a game over Portland State and two games over third-place Northern Arizona and Idaho State.
NORTH DAKOTA STRONG
Thursday’s match vs. Montana will be a “North Dakota Strong” match. North Dakota Strong is a campaign to help raise funds and awareness for breast cancer research during the month of October. All proceeds from this University of North Dakota Athletics fundraiser will be donated to Mayo Clinic for breast cancer research.
North Dakota had its 10-match winning streak snapped at Northern Arizona Saturday, falling 3-0 to the third-place Lumberjacks. UND ousted Southern Utah in three in Thursday’s tilt.
SCOUTING THE GRIZZLIES
Brooke Bray is the top hitter for the Griz, hitting at a .296 clip coming into the week ... Kayla Reno has tallied the most kills, generating 3.24 per set this season ... Montana hits .204 as a team, fifth-best percentage in the league ...UM’s 2.55 blocks per set ranks second in the Big Sky Conference ... Bray is third in the league in blocking and 42nd in the country with a 1.27 blocks per set average ... Montana defeated Montana State Monday night ... UND has swept UM in each of the last four matches between the schools and is 5-1 all-time.
SCOUTING THE BOBCATS
The Bobcats feature the top kills-getter in the Big Sky Conference as Kennadie Clute has piled-up 328 kills or 4.26 per set, both tops in the league heading into this week’s action ... Klute’s kills per set ranked 24th in all of NCAA as of the latest rankings (Oct. 17) ... Teammate Loni Kreun is also among the leaders in kills in the league with 3.04 per set, ranking eighth in the conference ... The Bobcats allow the highest hitting percentage to opponents this season in the Big Sky as teams have collectively hit .239 against them ... The schools have split their four matches all-time (2-2).
RONNI CENTURY COUNTDOWN
Senior Ronni Munkeby (Lisbon, N.D./Lisbon) is closing in on 1,000 career kills and looks to become just the 15th member of that club in program history. She needs just 15 kills to eclipse the plateau and has etched 15 kills or more in a match seven different times this season, leading UND in kills 11 times. North Dakota is 9-2 in matches in which she leads the offense in kills this year.
EIGHT IS ENOUGH?
UND teams know plenty about running together long conference winning streaks in head coach Ashley Hardee’s tenure. Its most recent nine-match league winning streak is the fourth stretch of eight matches or more in a single season.
YEAR CONFERENCE STREAK
2010 Great West *12
2009 Great West *9
2013 Big Sky 9
2011 Great West 8
*These streaks ran concurrent for 21-straight league wins.
The University of North Dakota volleyball program holds a 607-716-3 (.459) record all-time since the first game was played on Sept. 22, 1976. Under head coach Ashley Hardee, UND is 102-41 (.713).
YOU BETTY RECOGNIZE
North Dakota is 73-36 all-time at the Betty Engelstad Sioux Center, which opened prior to the 2004 season. Since 2008, UND is a staggering 51-10 (.831) including a school-record 13 wins in 2011.
Senior Ronni Munkeby now has 985 kills in her brilliant career at North Dakota and looks to become the 15th member of UND’s 1000-kill club. Also closing in is fellow senior Lisa Parlich, who sits at 861 kills entering the weekend. Junior Nikki Husfeldt is already third on UND’s assist list (3,531) and trails leader Holly Welter by just over a 1,000 with a season and a half left in her career.
UND is already one win shy of matching both last season’s overall conference win marks. North Dakota finished 2012 at 15-17 overall and 10-10 in the league, earning the fifth seed in the postseason league tournament. This season’s tournament is predetermined at Portland State with the winner of the league’s regular season earning the right to host next season’s tourney.
North Dakota etched its 600th win in the program’s history with a Sep. 26 sweep of Weber State. Of those wins, 121 have come in its NCAA Division I era (since 2008).
CLIMBING THE LADDER
Head coach Ashley Hardee notched his 100th win on Thursday, Oct. 10 with a win over Eastern Washington. He already sits fourth in the UND records books for wins in program history. Here’s a look at where he stands all-time for UND coaching victories:
Lisa Kissee- 137 wins (7 seasons)
Maria Bruggeman- 124 wins (8 seasons)
Carol Cooke- 105 wins (7 seasons)
Ashley Hardee 102 wins (5th season)
Senior Ronni Munkeby tallied a pair of 13-kill matches to help North Dakota to a perfect 2-0 road week at Montana State and Montana, Sep. 20-21. The Lisbon, N.D. native also added seven total blocks and a service ace on the week. She was honored as the Big Sky Conference Player of the Week for her efforts.
She also won the award the following week for her 29 combined kills in wins over Weber State and Idaho State. Munkeby tied a career-best with 19 kills in the win over the Bengals.
WHOOOAAA, WE’RE HALFWAY THERE....
North Dakota hit an incredible .500 as a team in the Sep. 30 win over North Dakota State. That mark was easily the best of the season and was just shy of the all-time record set back in 1991, a 3-0 trouncing of South Dakota that produced a .534 hit percentage.
UND FOURTH IN PRESEASON BIG SKY POLL
The University of North Dakota volleyball team was picked to finish fourth in the 2013 Big Sky Conference Preseason Coaches Poll. Reigning regular-season champion Portland State was the top vote-getter with seven first-place votes (coaches were not allowed to vote for their own teams). Idaho State (2 first-place votes) was second with Big Sky Tournament champion Northern Colorado third. Northern Arizona finished fifth in the voting and had the other two first-place nods.
HITTING THE BOOKS
The UND volleyball team earned the American Volleyball Coaches Association’s Team Academic Award with a cumulative 3.461 grade point average last season. The award, which was initiated in the 1992-93 academic year, honors collegiate and high school volleyball teams that displayed excellence in the classroom during the school year by maintaining at least a 3.30 cumulative team grade-point average on a 4.0 scale or a 4.10 cumulative team GPA on a 5.0 scale.
UND ON THE INTERNET
UNDSports.com is the official online home of University of North Dakota athletics. UNDSports.com is a veritable one-stop shop for the most hard-core UND fan, featuring breaking news, feature stories, game notes, live and archived video webcasts, FREE audio, FREE live stats, podcasts, blogs, player profiles, merchandise, photo galleries, news feeds, camp registration and much, much more.
BIG SKY TV
All UND home matches and every Big Sky road match will be available via free video webcast through Big Sky TV. Go to UNDSports.com for more details.
UND ON TV
Midco Sports Network will televise three UND volleyball matches as part of its broadcast deal that includes football, men’s hockey, women’s hockey, men’s basketball and women’s basketball. The first televised volleyball match is the highly-anticipated in-state battle with North Dakota State on Sep. 30. An Oct. 24 Big Sky match against Montana is the second on the docket and the Nov. 21 match against Northern Arizona rounds out the TV schedule. All three matches will air in high definition. Check MidcoSports.com for channel availability in your area.