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Date/Time: Friday (Oct. 31) at Big Rapids, Mich. - 12 p.m. (EDT); Saturday (Nov. 1) at Big Rapids, Mich. - 1 p.m. (EDT)
FSU Volleyball At A Glance: The Ferris State University women’s volleyball team will conclude the home portion of its 2008 regular-season schedule this weekend (Oct. 31-Nov. 1) with matches against a pair of Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) North Division opponents at FSU’s Ewigleben Sports Arena in Big Rapids, Mich. The Bulldogs square off against the Lake Superior State Lakers this Friday (Oct. 31) in a 12 p.m. (EDT) contest before taking on the Saginaw Valley State Cardinals this Saturday (Nov. 1) at 1 p.m. (EDT)?in the home finale.
Ferris Volleyball Alumni: The Bulldog volleyball program extends an invitationn for its alumni to attend this Saturday's (Nov. 1) regular-season home finale match against Saginaw Valley State.
Last Time Out: Ferris State dropped a 3-2 conference home decision to then nationally fifth-ranked and West Michigan archrival Grand Valley State last Friday (Oct. 24) evening before a crowd of 645 fans at FSU’s Ewigleben Sports Arena in its lone action of the week.
The 36th Season: The 2008 campaign represents Ferris State’s 36th season of women’s volleyball. The Bulldogs have compiled an all-time mark of 770-435 (.639) to date. Since the program’s inception in 1972, the Bulldogs have won nine GLIAC titles, made 14 NCAA-II Tournament appearances and registered 28 winning seasons.
Ticket Information: Tickets for all 2008 Ferris State volleyball home matches will be available at the door. For more information, please contact the FSU Athletics Ticket Office at (231) 591-2888.
2008 GLIAC Volleyball Preseason Poll: Ferris State has been chosen to finish in a tie for third place in the 2008 GLIAC Volleyball Coaches Preseason North Division Poll as released by the league office. The Bulldogs totaled 16 points in the balloting, which was conducted by the conference’s head coaches. A season ago, the Bulldogs racked up a third-place 24 points after posting 26 points good for third place in the 2006 league poll. Ferris State was tabbed fourth in the 2005 poll with 26 points. Grand Valley State was voted as the favorite to repeat as the North Division regular-season champions for the fourth consecutive year as the Lakers recorded 24 points along with four of the six first-place votes. Northern Michigan received the other two first-place votes while totaling 18 points.
Head Coach: Ferris State -- Tia Brandel-Wilhelm - (Alma, 1990), 13th season, 268-134 (.667); Career: 16th season, 386-154 (.715). Brandel-Wilhelm enters the 2008 campaign ranking 22nd in career best winning percentage among the NCAA Division II active coaches while her 371 career victories prior to 2008 represents a tie for the 22nd highest total on the Division II active coaches wins list. The 2002 GLIAC Coach of the Year guided the Bulldogs to NCAA-II Tournament appearances in 1999, 2002, 2004 and 2005. She registered her 200th win at the Bulldog helm with a victory in the 2006 season (Sept. 10) over Edinboro (Pa.) at the Findlay (Ohio) TownPlace Suites Classic.
Last Season: Ferris State concluded the 2007 season at 20-10 overall with a third-place 12-6 mark in the GLIAC’s North Division. The Bulldogs, which produced the program's 10th consecutive winning campaign in 2007, made its 10th straight conference tourney appearance a year ago.
On The Internet: Ferris State University Athletics’ official web site can be found at www.ferris.edu/sports. The site features information on all of FSU’s varsity athletics programs including rosters, statistics, yearbooks and more. The program’s 2008 yearbook can also be found at the site.
Live Stats: “Live Stats” of all 2008 Ferris State home matches will be provided in progress via the internet. Visit www.ferris.edu/sports and click on the “Live Stats” icon to access the CSTV GameTracker “Live Stats” feature. Live match statistics for this Tuesday's (9/16) conference contest at Grand Valley State will also be made available at -- ferris.edu/Sports/VOLLYBAL/2008sked.htm.
Great Stretch: Ferris has won 20 or more matches nine times under 13th-year head coach Tia Brandel-Wilhelm. The Bulldogs have registered a current 235-104 (.693) mark over the past 10 years and have reached the NCAA Division II Great Lakes Regional Tournament five times in that span. FSU has advanced to the GLIAC Tournament the last 10 consecutive years to date.
2008 Bulldog Captains: A pair of senior setter-outside hitters, Candice Marut (Pinconning) and Andrea Rich (New Baltimore/Anchor Bay) will serve as the captains for the 2008 season.
The FSU Roster: Ferris State’s 2008 active roster includes two seniors, four juniors, four sophomores and eight freshmen. Five of the 18 players are outside hitters, six are middle hitters, and seven others fill the squad’s setter, defensive specialist and libero roles. All 18 student-athletes on the team hail from the state of Michigan.
Regular-Season Home Finales: Ferris State has produced a 4-1 record (.800) in its last five regular-season home finale appearances to date, which includes a current three-match winning streak. The Bulldogs sport a 9-1 mark (.900) in their final two regular-season home encounters and have midst a present seven-match winning string in those outings. Last season, FSU posted 3-0 victories over Saginaw Valley State (11/2) and Northwood (11/3) in its final two home matches.
Bulldog Bites: Andrea Rich’s match-high 20 digs versus Grand Valley State last Friday (10/24) marked a season best, eclipsing her 17 digs set earlier this season in road matches versus Tampa (9/6) and Ashland (10/10). Rich, who claimed a career match-high 23 digs against Hillsdale in the 2007 season (10/12), has currently registered 11 double-digit dig single-match performances 11 times this campaign . . . The Bulldogs’ 82 digs against Grand Valley State (10/24) tied a 2008 team season high. FSU chalked up an 82-digs match total versus Drury (10/17) at the 2008 Asics GLVC/GLIAC Crossover Tournament in Indianapolis, Ind. . . . Junior outside hitter Sarah Lark’s (Alma) 129 kills in 24 matches this season represents a career single-season best, surpassing her 117 kills in 29 encounters a season ago . . . Junior middle hitter Kristy Gilchrist (Macomb/Anchor Bay) is three kills shy of moving into a 24th-place tie with Lauren Heine (2002-05) on FSU’s career kills leaders list. Gilchrist has compiled 745 career kills in 84 matches while Heine totaled 748 in 107 outings. Gilchrist is 27 more kills from moving into a tie for 19th place on the all-time charts and would tie Kate Pickvet (1999-01; 722 career kills) for that particular placing.
All-Conference Returnees: The Bulldogs return a pair of All-GLIAC performers from the 2007 season in junior middle hitter Kristy Gilchrist (Macomb/Anchor Bay) and Andrea Rich. Gilchrist received all-conference second-team accolades in 2007 while Rich garnered honorable mention all-league kudos. Gilchrist paced the 2007 squad in service aces (48) while finishing second for top team honors in kills (336) and total blocks (83) in 30 matches. Rich dished out a career-high 700 assists to go with 213 digs in 23 outings.
October Matches: Ferris State is a 60-24 overall (.714) in October matches since the 2000 season. The Bulldogs are 28-10 at home and are 32-14 in road/neutral site outings in that span. Ferris State won six of its nine matches in October a season ago, which included a 4-1 home ledger.
November Matches: The Bulldogs have compiled a 16-17 overall record (.485) in November encounters dating back to 2000. FSU is 9-3 at home and 7-14 in road/neutral site matches during that period. Ferris State registered a 2-1 record a season ago in November contests.
Senior Day Match: This Saturday’s (11/1) final regular-season home match versus Saginaw Valley State represents the program’s annual Senior Day contest as the Bulldogs will honor the 2008 squad’s two senior student-athletes, Candice Marut and Andrea Rich, in a pre-match ceremony. The pair have led FSU to a current 78-38 record (.672) during their careers (2005-present). Marut has netted 600 digs, 257 kills, 48 aces, and 2,010 assists in 103 matches entering this weekend’s action while Rich has totaled 195 kills with 1,947 assists, 91 aces, and 715 digs in 78 matches.
Did You Know?: In the 2003 season, Ferris State’s final two regular-season home matches were held on Oct. 31 and Nov. 1. The Bulldogs shutout Saginaw Valley State, 3-0, on Halloween and then tallied a 3-2 decision over Northwood on the first day of November.
Regional Rankings: Ferris State is listed eighth place in the most recent NCAA Division II Midwest Region rankings, which were released Wednesday (10/29) by the NCAA-II Women’s Volleyball Committee. The Bulldogs, who were ranked sixth in the first regional rankings (10/15), have compiled a 10-8 in-region record to date. FSU is one of six GLIAC teams to be listed in the Midwest Region rankings. Grand Valley State continues to remain first followed by Lewis and Northern Kentucky. Ferris State is one place in back of seventh-place Michigan Tech and one in front of ninth-place Missouri-St. Louis among the 10 teams to be ranked. The next rankings will be released Wednesday, Nov. 12.
NCAA Statistical Rankings: Ferris State is listed 69th in blocks per set (1.92 avg.) among the national statistical leaders through matches of Oct. 26. The Bulldogs are 78th in aces per set (1.73 avg.), 85th in winning percentage (.625), 123rd in assists per set (10.36 avg.), and 125th in kills per set (11.48 avg.). Individually, Arielle Goodson ranks 114th in blocks per set (0.88 avg.) and Kristy Gilchrist is 183rd (0.80 avg.). Andrea Rich ranks 188th in assists per set (5.77 avg.) and is 204th in aces per set (0.36). Lisa Tobiczyk ranks 214th in digs (3.26 avg.), Candice Marut is 239th in assists (4.28 avg.), and Katie Edwards ranks 283rd in kills (2.6 avg.).
A Look At This Week's Opponent:
Lake Superior State: Ferris State owns a 60-17 lead in its all-time series against Lake Superior State and has won 40 of the last 41 meetings between the two teams. The Bulldogs are presently 31-4 at home and 29-13 versus the Lakers in road/neutral site contests. FSU registered a 3-0 victory over LSSU earlier this season (9/27) in Sault Ste. Marie, Mich. Last season, Ferris State claimed a 3-1 home win (9/14) in Big Rapids and then recorded a 3-0 decision (10/21) at LSSU. Lake Superior State is currently 6-15 overall and 2-11 in the GLIAC’s North Division after suffering a 3-1 conference home loss to Michigan Tech last Saturday (10/25). The Lakers, under 14th-year head coach Mark Engle, are 3-9 in their last 12 matches. LSSU sports a 2-11 mark in away/neutral site contests this campaign. Tia Brandel-Wilhelm vs. LSSU – 26-1.
Saginaw Valley State: Ferris State has a commanding 48-9 advantage over Saginaw Valley State to date in the all-time series. The Bulldogs recorded a 3-2 victory against SVSU earlier this season (9/27) at University Center, Mich. FSU is 25-3 at home and 23-6 in road/neutral matches versus the Cardinals. A season ago, the Bulldogs swept the regular-season series with a 3-0 triumph at SVSU (9/22) and a 3-0 home decision over the the Cardinals (11/2) at Big Rapids. Saginaw Valley State improved to 19-5 overall and 9-4 in the GLIAC’s North Division after winning its second consecutive match with a 3-1 league home victory versus Northern Michigan last Saturday (10/25). The Cardinals, who currently sport a 14-3 ledger in away/neutral site outings this fall, visit nationally-ranked Grand Valley State this Friday (10/31) prior to its encounter at Ferris State. SVSU is coached by sixth-year head coach Will Stanton, the 2007 GLIAC Coach of the Year Award recipient. Tia Brandel-Wilhelm vs. SVSU – 21-4.