Weekly Notes (Matches 10-11): Ferris Volleyball Starts GLIAC Action On The Road

September 9, 2008

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    FSU Volleyball At A Glance: The Ferris State University women’s volleyball team will open the 2008 portion of its Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) schedule this weekend (Sept. 12-13) with a pair of road matches. The Bulldogs open their league slate facing the Northwood Timberwolves this Friday (Sept. 12) in a 7 p.m. (EDT) tilt before venturing to Detroit, Mich., this Saturday (Sept. 13) to battle the Wayne State Warriors.

    Last Time Out: Ferris State registered a 2-2 record at last weekend’s (Sept. 5-6) Tampa Classic in Tampa, Fla. FSU posted victories in its initial two matches as the Bulldogs produced a 3-2 win over Eckerd last Friday (Sept. 5) and then a 3-0 decision versus Colorado State-Pueblo in the day’s final contest. Ferris State suffered a pair of 3-1 setbacks to Minnesota State and nationally fifth-ranked Tampa in last Saturday’s (Sept. 6) action.

    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 761-429 (.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. Defending NCAA Division II National Champion 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, 259-128 (.669); Career: 16th season, 377-148 (.718). 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.

    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 226-98 (.698) 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 seniors – setter-outside hitter Candice Marut (Pinconning) and setter-outside hitter 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.

    On The Road: The Bulldogs are 667-317 (.678) overall since 1981 which includes a 423-252 (.627) record in road/neutral site matches during that span. Ferris State was 4-6 in road matches a season ago while compiling a 4-2 mark in neutral site encounters.

    Bulldog Bites: Andrea Rich moved into 10th place among Ferris State’s all-time leaders in assists with a present 1,553 career total. Rich, who surpassed Wendy McCann (1984-87; 1,552 assists) with a squad-best 20 helpers against Tampa (9/6), is now 36 assists shy of tying Emily Clouse’s (2002-05) ninth-place 1,589 career assists total . . . Arielle Goodson’s 14 kills at Tampa (9/6) represented a career single-match high, eclipsing her 13 kills against Eckerd (Fla.) in the Bulldogs’ first match (9/5) of the Tampa Classic . . . Kristy Gilchrist moved into 30th place on Ferris State’s all-time kills leaders list with a current 602 career total in 69 matches. Gilchrist is now 72 kills away from tying Kelly Stosik (1986-89; 674 career total) for 29th place. She also ranks 24th in FSU annals with 211 career total blocks and is one shy of tying Tracie Henne (1990-93; 212 career total) for 23rd-place honors . . . Junior outside hitter Katie Edwards (Cedar Springs) has tallied double figures in kills six times this campaign, which includes 15 against Indiana, Pa. (8/29) and 14 at Tampa (9/6). Edwards accumulated double-digit kills on 13 occasions last season . . . Freshman outside hitter Karen Thompson’s (Holt) eight digs against Minnesota State (9/6) at the Tampa Classic marked a personal season high . . . Andrea Rich dug a season-best 17 attacks at Tampa (9/6) for her third double-digit match total this campaign. Rich’s 17 digs exceeded her 15 versus Eckerd (9/5) in a Tampa Classic match . . . Ferris State’s 53 kills at Tampa (9/6) represents a team match high this campaign, bettering the team’s 51 kills against Wheeling Jesuit (8/29) at the Ferris State Invitational.

    September Matches: Ferris State has compiled a 70-35 overall record (.667) in September outings dating back to the 2000 campaign. The Bulldogs are 21-5 at home and 49-30 in road/neutral site contests since that time. FSU was 6-6 in September matches last season – 2-1 at home and 4-5 on the road. The 2002 and 2006 teams both compiled an 11-2 record for the month while 2003 squad posted an 11-3 ledger.

    Triple Double-Double: Andrea Rich netted her second triple double-double of the 2008 season with 11 kills, 17 assists, and 15 digs against Eckerd, Fla. (9/5) at the Tampa (Fla.) Classic. Rich garnered 11 kills with 25 assists and 10 digs versus Minnesota Duluth (8/30) at the Ferris State Invitational in Big Rapids, Mich.

    All-Conference Returnees: The Bulldogs return a pair of All-GLIAC performers from the 2007 season in 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.

    GLIAC Openers: Ferris State is 13-5 (.722) in conference openers dating back to 1990, which includes a 5-3 road mark in those matches during that span. The Bulldogs have been victorious in eight of their last 10 league-opening matches to date after garnering a 3-1 home triumph over Lake Superior State in last season’s (9/14) conference opener at Big Rapids. FSU suffered a 3-0 loss at Northwood (9/14/05) in its most recent GLIAC road opening outing.

    Diggin’ It: Redshirt freshman libero Lisa Tobiczyk (Marysville) has chalked up a double-digit digs total in five matches this season, including 11 apiece in the Bulldogs’ most recent two matches against Minnesota State (9/6) and at Tampa (9/6). Tobiczyk turned in a season-best 22 digs effort versus Indiana, Pa., earlier this season (8/29) at the Ferris State Invitational.

    Double Trouble: Ferris’ current top two kills leaders this season, Katie Edwards(83 kills) and Arielle Goodson (74 kills) have combined to generate 39.9% (157-393) of the Bulldogs’ total kills production.

    Force In The Middle: Sophomore middle hitter Arielle Goodson (Grand Rapids/Central) leads the 2008 team with a 0.96 blocks per set average and has totaled a squad-best 27 blocks (24 block assists) in nine matches. In her first nine outings a season ago, Goodson posted a squad-high 29 blocks (19 block assists) while averaging 0.94 a set.

    NCAA Statistical Rankings: Ferris State ranks 54th in service aces per game (2.0 avg.) among the latest NCAA-II national statistical leaders through matches of Sept. 7. The Bulldogs are 75th in blocks (1.91 avg.), 86th in kills (11.91 avg.), 95th in assists (10.61 avg.), and 107th in hitting percentage (.194). Individually, Arielle Goodson is 77th in hitting percentage (.329) and 79th in blocks per set (0.96 avg.). Andrea Rich is listed 153rd in hitting percentage (.292) and 194th in assists per set (5.03 avg.). Candice Marut ranks 219th in assists per set (4.3 avg.) while Katie Edwards is 246th in kills per set (2.59 avg.).

    A Look At This Week's Opponents:

    Northwood: Ferris State sports a 27-20 mark in its all-time series versus Northwood despite the Timberwolves prevailing in 12 of the last 19 meetings to date. The two teams split last season’s series with Northwood registering a 3-0 decision in Midland (9/21). The Bulldogs, who are 12-13 on the road in the series, avenged the loss later in the season (11/3) by posting a 3-0 home victory over the Timberwolves in Big Rapids. Northwood is presently 3-5 overall and 0-0 in the GLIAC to date this season. The Timberwolves, under fifth-year head coach Tim Koth, are midst a two-match winning streak which includes a 3-1 non-conference triumph over Metropolitan State (Colo.) last Saturday (9/6) at the Colorado Premier Challenge in Denver, Colo. NU began the campaign winning one of its initial six contests. Northwood was 18-12 overall and 6-12 in the GLIAC’s North Division last season. Tia Brandel-Wilhelm vs. NU – 12-16.

    Wayne State:Ferris State’s contest against Wayne State will represent the 70th matchup between the teams with the Bulldogs holding a 42-27 lead in the all-time series. In the last meeting (10/13) a season ago, Ferris claimed a 3-0 home win over the Warriors in Big Rapids. FSU, which has won the last 10 series matches to date, boasts a 22-21 all-time road/neutral mark against Wayne State. The Warriors, under first-year head coach Phil Nickel, are 5-3 overall and 0-0 in GLIAC action to date after producing a 3-0 non-league decision over Gannon last Saturday (9/6) in the TownePlace Suites Classic at Findlay, Ohio. The Warriors have won four of their last six matches to date, which included a 2-2 record at the TownePlace Suites Classic. Wayne State was 10-15 overall and 5-12 in the GLIAC’s South Division a season ago. Tia Brandel-Wilhelm vs. WSU – 10-3.

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