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2011 Cyclone Volleyball Season Review

AMES, Iowa – The 2011 season was another banner year for Iowa State volleyball as head coach Christy Johnson-Lynch led the Cyclones to their six-straight NCAA tournament culminating in the team’s second Elite Eight appearance in four years and a final national ranking of eighth. Iowa State finished the season 25-6 overall and 13-3 in the Big 12, placing second in the league. 2011 is only the second season in which an Iowa State volleyball team has ever recorded 25 wins. Individually, four Cyclones earned all-America and league honors and a record 10 players were named to Big 12 all-academic teams.

Iowa State started the season with a program-best 9-0 record, including a come-from-behind win at No. 9 Florida on Labor Day. The win over the Gators was the sixth win over a top-10 team in Cyclone history, all six wins coming under Johnson-Lynch. The squad finished the season with a 5-5 record against ranked opponents, tying the 2007 Cyclones for the most wins against ranked opponents in a single season.

Johnson-Lynch, who was the fastest Iowa State coach to clinch 100 victories with the Cyclones, became the winningest volleyball coach at Iowa State as she coached the Cyclones to a straight-sets win at Texas Tech for her 136th coaching victory. After seven seasons at the helm, Johnson-Lynch holds a 150-73 overall record and has led the Cyclones to an 87-50 mark in the Big 12.

Setter Alison Landwehr led the Cyclones with a selection to the American Volleyball Coaches Association First Team All-America. Landwehr is the third Cyclone volleyball player in school history to be named to the first team following Ashley Mass (2009) and Victoria Henson (2010). Outside hitter Carly Jenson finished her Cyclone career garnering a spot on the all-America second team while libero Kristen Hahn and middle blocker Jamie Straube were named all-America honorable mentions. It was the first nod for Landwehr, Jenson and Hahn. Straube picked up her second award, having been an honorable mention in 2010.

Hahn led the all-league honors for the Cyclones, named the Big 12 Libero of the Year after her first season as Iowa State’s starting libero. Hahn’s top libero honor is the fourth-straight for Iowa State after Mass took home the award from 2008-10. Jenson was unanimously selected to the conference’s top team and was joined there by Landwehr and Straube.

As always, the Cyclones were as successful in the classroom as they were on the court, finishing the fall semester with an all-time best team grade-point average of 3.43 and naming 10 players to the league academic teams, including eight first team selections. Hahn, Jenson, Landwehr, Caitlin Mahoney, Kelsey Petersen, Deb Stadick, Straube and Hannah Willms garnered top academic honors and Rachel Hockaday and Tenisha Matlock took home second team honors.

Looking ahead to 2012, the Cyclones will welcome six freshmen to the squad including three top-50 recruits, three Under Armour All-Americans and two junior national’s champions. Texas natives Andie Malloy (Allen) and Caitlin Nolan (Southlake) are the first recruits from the Lone Star State since 2009. Johnson-Lynch’s hotbed states for recruiting provide the rest of the 2012-13 class as Mackenzie Bigbee (Williamsburg), Morgan Kuhrt (Waverly) and Natalie Vondrak (Sioux City) hail from Iowa and Bria Rasmussen (Grand Island) comes to Iowa State from Nebraska.

Cyclone Notebook
• Iowa State advanced to the NCAA Regional Final for the second time in four years in 2011 before falling to Florida State in five sets.
• The Cyclones finish the season with a 25-6 record, only the second time in school history the team has compiled 25 wins.
• With five wins over ranked opponents, the 2011 Cyclones tied the 2007 squad for most wins over ranked teams in a single season.
• Four Cyclones were named to the American Volleyball Coaches Association All-America teams or honorable mention list: Alison Landwehr (first team), Carly Jenson (second team), Kristen Hahn (honorable mention) and Jamie Straube (honorable mention). It is the first honor for Landwehr, Jenson and Hahn and the second for Straube.
• Jenson (unanimous), Landwehr and Straube were all members of the All-Big 12 first team and Hahn was the conference’s top libero.
• The Cyclones set a record with 10 players named to the Academic All-Big 12 Teams, including eight first team selections.
• Head Coach Christy Johnson-Lynch broke the record for most wins by a volleyball coach at Iowa State in 2011 and finished the season with a career record of 150-73.
• Attendance continued its boom in the Johnson-Lynch era in 2011 as 28,926 fans took in matches at Hilton Coliseum, the second-highest season attendance total in program history.
• 4,929 fans came out for the Cyclones’ Oct. 2 tilt with No. 8 Texas, the third-largest crowd in school history. The Nov. 5 match against Texas Tech ranked 10th all-time with a crowd of 2,660.
• With a 12-3 road record, the 2011 Cyclones recorded the most road wins in a single season.
• Iowa State was 2-0 on neutral courts until running into Florida State in the NCAA Elite Eight. The Seminoles were the only neutral court loss of the season for Iowa State and only the second team to beat the Cyclones when trailing in kills.
• The Cyclones were nails on defense again in 2011, out digging 27 (87 percent) of their opponents in 2011 and finishing the season 20-0 when leading in blocking.
• The squad was 4-6 when trailing in blocks.
• Jenson finished the season with her second-straight 300 kill-300 dig season, totaling 425 kills and 368 digs on the year. The senior is only the fifth Cyclone to ever go 300-300 twice in a career.
• Landwehr is the seventh player in program history to record 100 digs, kills and assists in a season, finishing with 278, 100 and 1,283 in the respective categories.
• The junior’s 242 assists in the postseason are the second-most for a single postseason in school history. Landwehr’s average of 12.10 assists per set in a single postseason run is also second-best at Iowa State.
• With a career-record 66 assists against Florida State, Landwehr set a Cyclone record for assists in a NCAA tournament match.
• Hahn recorded 14 matches with 20 or more digs in her first season as Iowa State’s starting libero and was the only Big 12 player with 35 digs in a match.
• Straube hit .652 against Miami (FL) in the second round of the postseason, the second-best hitting percentage by a Cyclone in a NCAA match. Straube is also fourth on the list after hitting .500 against George Mason in 2009.
• Freshman Victoria Hurtt lit up Miami (FL) for a .429 clip, ranked fifth at Iowa State for a NCAA match.
• Hurtt scored 24 kills on 56 attempts against Florida State in the NCAA Elite Eight, the second-most kills and attempts in a match for a Cyclone freshman.
• Caitlin Mahoney tied the Iowa State record for aces in a four-set match in the rally scoring era with five aces against Cincinnati, tying Dana Koziol who had five against UW-Green Bay in 2002.
• Sophomore Tenisha Matlock moved from right side to middle blocker at the beginning of the 2011 season and finished the season with 102 block assists, the first player to compile more than 100 block assists in a single season since 2008.
• Kelsey Petersen’s nine block assists at Minnesota in the NCAA Sweet 16 is second-best at Iowa State in a postseason match.
• Petersen played in 12 postseason matches in her Cyclone career, tying former Cyclone Kaylee Manns for the most postseason matches played at Iowa State.
• 2011 mirrored 2009 in many ways for the Cyclones. The teams’ records were identical at various markers during the season: through 10 matches (9-1), 15 matches (12-3), 20 matches (17-3) and 25 matches (21-4).

Streaks and Trends
• Iowa State opponents have hit over .300 just 15 times in 223 matches under Johnson-Lynch.
• Iowa State went 14-3 in three set matches in 2011. Under Johnson-Lynch, Iowa State is 89-32 in three set matches.
• In true Johnson-Lynch fashion, Iowa State out-dug 27 of its opponents this season.
• Behind Johnson-Lynch’s leadership, the Cyclones win 88% (121-16) of their matches when earning the first set victory.
• Iowa State has collected 20 wins in five-consecutive seasons under head coach Johnson-Lynch. The Cyclones have had 11 20+ win seasons since 1982.
• Under Johnson-Lynch, the Cyclones have won at least one match over a top 25 opponent in each of her seven seasons and have defeated at least two top 25 teams in each of the last five seasons.
• The Cyclones tied a program record with their win over No. 19 Minnesota as both the 2011 and 2007 squads won five matches against ranked opponents.
• This season, six players led the Cyclones in kills during a match. Only three players ever led the team in kills in 2010.
• Blocking is key to victory for the Cyclones. In 2011, Iowa State was a perfect 20-0 when leading in blocks. The team finished 4-6 when trailing in blocks.

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