After picking up its first BIG EAST Conference victory on Sunday, the DePaul volleyball team goes for two in a row on Thursday when it welcomes league rival Notre Dame to Lincoln Park. The Blue Demons and Irish tangle at 7:30 p.m. in McGrath Arena. T
CHICAGO After picking up its first BIG EAST Conference victory on Sunday, the DePaul volleyball team goes for two in a row on Thursday when it welcomes league rival Notre Dame to Lincoln Park. The Blue Demons and Irish tangle at 7:30 p.m. in McGrath Arena. The match can be seen live www.depaulbluedemons.com.
The Blue Demons join more than 200 schools across the nation as Thursday’s match has been dubbed the Dig for a Cure match. Fans are encouraged to wear pink in support of breast cancer research. Individuals can also make a flat donation as all funds raised will support Chicago’s Susan G. Komen foundation office.
Thursday’s match marks the 15th meeting between the two programs while the Irish (9-9, 4-2 BIG EAST) hold a 10-4 series advantage. Since reuniting in the BIG EAST in 2005, the Irish have won all three league matches, 3-0. DePaul's last series win came in 1991, a 3-1 victory in Chicago. The two programs were previous conference foes when the Blue Demons and Irish were both members of the North Star Conference (1983-1991).
As travel partners in the BIG EAST, both DePaul and Notre Dame went 1-1 last week. Each fell to conference leader Pittsburgh, but picked up a victory over West Virginia.
The Blue Demons (2-16, 1-5 BIG EAST) snapped their seven-match conference loosing streak with their sweep of the Mountaineers on Sunday. Sarah Cullen led DePaul’s efforts with her 11th double-double (19k, 14d) of the season. With her impressive numbers in both matches Cullen picked up her first ever BIG EAST Weekly Honor Roll accolade. The junior outside hitter registered 33 kills, 21 digs and four service aces last week. Cullen also ranks second in the BIG EAST by averaging 3.72 kills per set.
Blue Demon Hits
Junior Sarah Cullen has 11 double-doubles (kills-digs) this season and 19 in her career...Cullen has finished the last 13 of 14 matches with double-digit kill totals and... Cullen ranks second in the conference by averaging 3.72 kills per set (264 kills)... sophomore Jacie Fiedler has registered double-digit kill totals in 12 of the Blue Demons’ 18 matches, while she has finished 27 career matches in double-digit kill totals... the Blue Demons picked up their first BIG EAST victory against West Virginia a 3-0 sweep on Oct. 12... although 2-16, the team has only lost four matches 3-0, while they have played nine, four set and four, five set matches.
Fighting the Irish
Notre Dame enters with match with a 9-9 and 4-2 league record... they have won four of their last six matches... Christina Kaelin leads the Irish and ranks fifth in the conference with 3.63 kps... Kellie Sciacca boasts a team-best .319 clip that ranks 10th in the league... ND is second in the league with 12.45 assists per set.
Last Time Out
The Blue Demons swept the West Virginia for their first BIG EAST victory of the season. Sarah Cullen paced the Blue Demons with 19 kills and 15 digs, while Chrisy Landschoot dished out 38 assists. Kate Letcher and Landschoot each registered attack percentages above .400 in the victory.
Looking a Week Ahead
The Blue Demons go on a three-match road trip next week. Staying close to home on Tuesday, the Blue Demons make the short trip to Chicago State, while the weekend sends the squad to BIG EAST Conference foes Seton Hall and Villanova. DePaul squares-off with Pirates on Saturday and Wildcats on Sunday.
BIG EAST Honor Roll
Sarah Cullen was named to the BIG EAST Weekly Honor Roll after leading the Blue Demons to a 1-1 record the weekend of Oct. 11-12. The Blue Demons dropped a tough 3-2 match to Pittsburgh, but bounced back and swept West Virginia the following day. Cullen paced the Blue Demon offense with 33 kills, while she chipped in 21 digs and four service aces. Cullen joins Fiedler as the only other DePaul player to earn the conference honor this season.
Sensational Sarah x2
Junior outside hitter Sarah Cullen was named to the DePaul Invitational All-Tournament team after leading the Blue Demons with 54 kills and a pair of double-doubles. Against Ball State, Cullen tallied a career-high 21 kills. For an encore, the junior was named to the Hawkeye/Holiday Inn Challenge All-Tournament team. During the challenge, Cullen average 4.55 kills per set and registered double-doubles against Portland and Tulsa.
Jacie Fielder was named to the all-tournament at the Chicagoland Classic and the Golden Bear Invitational. At the Chicagoland, Fiedler tallied 24 kills and team-best .310 attack percentage. Fiedler outdid her opening weekend performance at the Golden Bear Invitational the following weekend. She again led DePaul with a .415 attack percentage and 42 kills. Against No. 5 Cal, Fielder registered a season-high .667 (14-0-21).
BIG EAST Fiedler
Jacie Fiedler was named to the BIG EAST weekly honor roll after being named to the Golden Bear Invitational all-tournament team. Fiedler led the Blue Demons with a .415 attack percentage and 42 kills (3.50 kps) in three matches at Cal. Fiedler also led DePaul with five total blocks on the week.
Hawkeye/Holiday Inn Challenge
DePaul struggled at the Iowa tournament, dropping matches to Tulsa, Iowa and Portland State. The Blue Demons pushed Tulsa and Portland State to four sets, but were unable to take home a “W” from the tournament. Sarah Cullen was named to her second all-tournament team of the season by averaging 4.55 kills per set.
DePaul Invitational Review
The Blue Demons stumbled last weekend at the DePaul Invitational, dropping matches to tournament champion UTSA, Ball State and Denver. Junior outside hitter Sarah Cullen was named to the all-tournament team after tallying 54 kills and a pair of double-doubles (kills-digs).
Golden Bear Recap
The Blue Demons grabbed their first win of the season with a 3-2 come from behind victory over James Madison at the Golden Bear Invitational. Jacie Fiedler was named to the all-tournament team after leading the Blue Demons with a .415 attack percentage and 42 kills (3.50 kps) in three matches. Fiedler also led DePaul with five total blocks. DePaul started out the tournament by dropping matches to No. 5 Cal and UC Riverside.
2008 BIG EAST Championship
The 2008 BIG EAST Volleyball Championship will be conducted Nov. 21-23 in Pittsburgh, Pa. The single-elimination tournament includes eight of the league’s 15 teams. The top eight teams, based on regular season conference records qualify for the event and are seeded according to their finish in the league standings. The 26th annual championship will be hosted by the University of Pittsburgh at the Fitzgerald Field House. ESPNU will air the championship game live on Nov. 23. The champion receives the league’s automatic bid to the 64-team NCAA Division I Women’s Volleyball Championship.
The Louisville Cardinals are the top choice in the 2008 BIG EAST Volleyball Preseason Coaches’ Poll. Eight of the BIG EAST’s 15 head coaches gave Louisville first-place votes, edging out defending conference champion St. John’s, which had four first-place tallies.