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Cyclones Will Dig Pink Against Sooners

AMES, Iowa – No. 22 Iowa State (10-7, 4-3 Big 12) will host its annual Dig Pink match on Saturday when Oklahoma (16-6, 5-2 Big 12) visits Hilton Coliseum.

Iowa State is returning home after losing at No. 8 Texas in five sets on Wednesday and the Sooners bring a two-match win streak with them into the contest. Oklahoma is receiving votes in the latest American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) poll, one of five Big 12 teams receiving votes or ranked in the poll.

Last year in Ames, Jamie Straube paced the Cyclones with 14 kills and .400 hitting while fellow middle blocker Tenisha Matlock collected six blocks (two solo, four assists) in Iowa State’s 3-1 victory. Matlock also contributed 13 kills in the match.

The Sooners are led on offense and net defense by junior Sallie McLaurin who is averaging 3.04 kills per set on .380 hitting in Big 12 play while picking up 1.46 blocks per set. Grace Whitely is also averaging more than 1.00 blocks per set, at a 1.10 mark. Libero Maria Fernanda ranks third in the league with 4.12 digs per set.

For Iowa State, sophomore Victoria Hurtt has been on a tear since the Cyclones loss at No. 11 Kansas State. Hurtt is hitting .306 over Iowa State’s last five matches, averaging 3.44 kills per set and moving her into the top-10 in the Big 12 this season in hitting, kills and points.

Matlock has also had a hot hand offensively, hitting .390 since the match in Manhattan, Kan. and enters the weekend ranked sixth with a .308 hitting mark against Big 12 opponents, following a season-high .429 hitting jag at Texas.

Prior to Saturday’s match, the Cyclones will host a free Youth Skills Clinic at the Lied Recreation Center from noon-1 p.m. CST for kids in the 8th grade or younger. All clinic participants will receive complimentary admission to Saturday night’s match.

Also this week, fans can purchase 4-packs of tickets for the Oklahoma match. The 4-packs include four general admission tickets, four hot dogs and four drinks for $25. The offer is only available until this Friday and will not be for purchase at the door on Saturday.

First serve on Saturday is slated for 6:30 p.m.

Cyclone Notebook                                                                                                      
• Iowa State will host its annual Dig Pink match on Saturday while hosting the Oklahoma Sooners at Hilton Coliseum.

• Prior to Saturday night’s match, the Cyclones will host a free Youth Skills Clinic at the Lied Recreation Center from noon-1 p.m. for kids in the 8th grade and younger. Participants in the clinic will receive free admission to the volleyball match.

• Fans can also purchase 4-Packs of tickets for the Dig Pink match this week. 4-Packs include 4 tickets, 4 hot dogs & 4 drinks for $25. The offer is only available until the day before the match. Seating is general admission.

• Iowa State is returning home after falling in five sets at No. 8 Texas on Wednesday night.

• The Cyclones led 2-0 in the match before Texas staged a comeback. The Cyclones are 3-3 this season when they lose the third set of a match and 4-1 when they win the first set out of intermission.

• Overall, Iowa State is 5-6 in third sets this season.

• The Cyclones led the Longhorns in both kills (67-65) and digs (74-64).

• Libero Kristen Hahn recorded her second 30-dig match of the season with 30 digs at Texas. Hahn is the only Big 12 player this season with two matches of at least 30 digs.

• Texas aced Iowa State nine times on Wednesday, the most aces by a Cyclone opponent this season.

• For their part, the Cyclones served up six aces, marking the second time this season the team has collected at least six aces in a loss. (Iowa State had six aces in their 0-3 loss at K-State).

• 28 attack errors hurt the Cyclones’ effort at Texas while the home team committed just 12 attack errors, five coming in the first set.

• Texas added 16 blocks to their performance, the largest difference between the teams inthe match, four blocks coming in the fourth set. Khat Bell and Sha’Dare McNeal each collected seven total blocks, including three solo blocks from McNeal.

• Iowa State outside hitter Victoria Hurtt put up 22 kills on the Longhorns, a season-high for the sophomore and two kills shy of her career-high 24 from last season’s Elite Eight match against Florida State.

• Hurtt has led the Cyclones in kills six times this season but the team is 1-5 in those matches.

• In league play, Hurtt ranks in the top-10 in hitting (.286), kills (3.44) and points (3.67).

• Another heavy hitter for the Cyclones, middle blocker Tenisha Matlock, posted a season-high .429 hitting percentage at Texas. The North Platte, Neb. native ranks sixth in the Big 12 this season, hitting .308 against league foes.

• Matlock’s fellow middle, Jamie Straube, recorded 13 kills for the fourth time this season in Wednesday’s contest.

• Setter Alison Landwehr tied a season-high with 59 assists in the showdown, the most assists by a Big 12 player during conference play this season.

• Longhorn sophomore Haley Eckerman led Texas with 23 kills in the match, the first time an opposing player has reached 20 kills since Iowa State’s loss to Syracuse on Sept. 8.

• The Cyclones remain the only team digging better than 17.00 balls per set, averaging 17.04 digs per set in Big 12 matches.


Streaks and Trends                                                                                                                        

• Iowa State opponents have hit over .300 just 18 times in 240 matches under Johnson-Lynch.

• Iowa State went 14-3 in three set matches in 2011 and is 4-2 in 2012. Under Johnson-Lynch, Iowa State is 93-32 in three set matches.

• Behind Johnson-Lynch’s leadership, the Cyclones win 87% (129-19) 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 eight seasons and have defeated at least two top 25 teams in each of the last six seasons.

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