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This Week in WAC Volleyball - Oct. 22

This Week in WAC Volleyball - Oct. 22

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KANSAS CITY'S LUKES, NM STATE'S HART NAMED WAC PLAYERS OF THE WEEK
Kansas City senior middle hitter Tyrecia Lukes and NM State junior middle blocker Megan Hart have been named the Western Athletic Conference Offensive and Defensive Volleyball Players of the Week, respectively, for the week of Oct. 15-21. This is the second WAC Player of the Week honor of the season and of her career for Lukes and the first-ever honor for Hart.

Lukes, a Miami, Fla., native led the WAC with a .632 hitting percentage last week. In a sweep of Grand Canyon, she finished with 13 kills on 19 attempts with just one hitting error for the .632 clip and a 4.33 kills per set average. It was the fifth time this season Lukes has hit over .600. She currently leads the WAC and ranks ninth in the NCAA in hitting percentage (.418) while averaging 3.19 kills per set.

Hart, a Kelowna, British Columbia, Canada native, had an outstanding week defensively for the Aggies, both at the net and in the back row. She led the WAC with 1.86 blocks per set and also averaged 1.86 digs per set as NM State went 2-0 on the week to extend its home winning streak to 20 matches. The middle blocker posted her first career double-double when she recorded 12 kills and 11 digs in a four-set victory against Utah Valley, adding a team-high six blocks in the match. Hart closed out the weekend with a match-high seven blocks in a sweep of CSU Bakersfield. She currently ranks fifth in the WAC with 1.05 blocks per set.

Other offensive nominees included: Tesa Oaks of California Baptist averaged 4.25 kills on .265 hitting and 0.22 service aces per set as the Lancers went 2-0 on the week ... Grand Canyon's Melody Horton averaged 3.33 kills on .327 hitting ... Megan Hart of NM State averaged 2.71 kills on .447 hitting, 0.57 assists and 0.29 service aces per set as the Aggies went 2-0 on the week ... UT Rio Grande Valley's Ragni Steen Knudsen averaged 4.050 kills on .250 hitting and 0.29 service aces per set.

Other defensive nominees included: CBU's Nicole Abreu averaged 5.00 digs per set ... Emma Dyer of Kansas City averaged 1.33 blocks per set ... UTRGV's Gysell Zayas averaged 6.57 digs per set.

WAC STAT LEADERS
Kansas City leads the WAC in hitting percentage (.234), assists (12.76) and kills (13.51), while NM State is tops in opponent hitting percentage (.155). Utah Valley leads the WAC in blocks (2.56), California Baptist is tops in service aces (1.58) and UT Rio Grande Valley leads the WAC in and digs (17.68).

Individually, Kansas City's Tyrecia Lukes leads the WAC in hitting percentage (.418), while Utah Valley's Kazna Tarawhiti is the leader in kills (4.09) and points (4.55) and teammate Makaila Jarema is tops in blocks (1.50). CBU's Natalie Zimmerer leads the WAC in assists (10.50), CSU Bakersfield's Desiree Sukhov is tops in service aces (0.42) and Chicago State's Megan Klavitter leads the league in digs (5.66).

In WAC matches only, Kansas City leads the league in hitting percentage (.239), assists (13.36) and kills (14.18), while UTRGV is tops in service aces (1.79) and digs (19.18). NM State is tops in opponent hitting percentage (.138) and Utah Valley leads the WAC in blocks (2.90).

Individually in WAC play, Lukes leads the league in hitting percentage (.387) and blocks (1.63), while UTRGV's Ragni Steen Knudsen is the leader in kills (4.45) and points (4.89). Zimmerer leads the WAC in assists (10.49), Sukhov is tops in service aces (0.53) and Klavitter leads the WAC in digs (5.62).

FOUR WAC PLAYERS RANK AMONG NCAA ACTIVE CAREER LEADERS
Chicago State's Lauryn Dela Cruz currently ranks fifth among NCAA active career leaders in attacks per set (11.20). Meanwhile, UT Rio Grande Valley's Ragni Steen Knudsen ranks 20th in kills per set (3.67) and 43rd in total kills (1,198), teammate Alexandra Ecker ranks 31st in sets played (440) and NM State's Tatyana Battle ranks 37th in total kills (1,247).

NM STATE EXTENDS HOME WIN STREAK TO 20 MATCHES
After posting a pair of home wins last week, NM State has now won 20 straight matches at the Pan American Center, dating back to Sept. 1, 2017, when the Aggies fell to No. 11 UCLA. NM State's longest home winning streak took place from the 2005-07 seasons and lasted 29 matches.

UTAH VALLEY RANKS FIFTH NATIONALLY IN TOTAL BLOCKS
With 235.5 total blocks, Utah Valley is one of the top blocking teams in the nation as it is currently ranked tied with Cleveland State for fifth in the country in that category. Utah Valley is two and a half blocks behind fourth-place UALR (238). Charlotte leads the nation with 269 blocks, while Wyoming ranks second (252) and Florida is third (249.5).

CSUB'S WICKS JUST OUTSIDE PROGRAM TOP 10 FOR CAREER ASSISTS
CSU Bakersfield redshirt junior Sidney Wicks has 1,392 career assists. The setter needs one more to move into the all-time program Top 10.

CHICAGO STATE'S KLAVITTER IS PROGRAM CAREER DIGS LEADER
Chicago State's Megan Klavitter, who earlier this season became the only active player in the WAC with 1,000 or more digs, became the program Division I career digs leader on Oct. 13 at Grand Canyon when she recorded her 1,315th dig. Klavitter now has 1,364 career digs and needs 52 to enter the WAC Top 10. Klavitter posted a career-high 38 digs against Brown on Sept. 14. She leads the WAC in digs per set (5.71) and total digs (491).

CBU'S ABREU POSTS SIXTH-MOST DIGS IN PROGRAM HISTORY
California Baptist libero Nicole Abreu posted a career-high 26 digs at CSU Bakersfield on Oct. 13. The 26 digs rank sixth in CBU's single-match history in the NCAA era (2013-18).

CSUB'S BOISEAU TIES PROGRAM HITTING PERCENTAGE MARK
CSU Bakersfield redshirt freshman Brooke Boiseau recorded a .529 hitting percentage against Seattle U on Oct. 8. It tied CSUB's Division I record for a five-set match.

CHICAGO STATE BEATS UMKC FOR FIRST TIME IN 14 YEARS
On Oct. 11, Chicago State defeated Kansas City in five sets to pick up its first win over the 'Roos in 14 years, snapping a 17-match losing streak. It marked the first victory for the Cougars in the series with since Oct. 22, 2004, when they earned a five-set win at the Swinney Recreation Center in Kansas City.

CSUB SUFFERS FIRST HOME LOSS OF SEASON
The loss to California Baptist on Oct. 13 was CSU Bakersfield's first of the season at home. The 'Runners were 8-0 prior to the defeat, the program's best start at home in the school's Division I history and the best since 1999. CSUB has now won 17 of its last 20 home matches dating back to Oct. 15, 2016. With at least three home matches remaining, CSUB already has eight wins in the Icardo Center. The most victories any CSUB team has recorded at home at the Division I level is nine (9-4, 2014).

UTAH VALLEY'S ATOA GETS 400TH CAREER WIN
Utah Valley head coach Sam Atoa recorded his 400th career victory on Oct. 6 at Grand Canyon. Atoa, who is currently in his 20th season as Utah Valley's head coach, boasts a 401-232 career record (.633). The 2016 WAC Coach of the Year holds a 263-201 (.567) mark during his 16 seasons of coaching Utah Valley at the NCAA Division I level, as well as a 138-31 (.775) clip during his four seasons of coaching the Wolverines during the school's junior college era. He is Utah Valley's winningest active coach in any sports, as well as the school's winningest coach at the NCAA Division I level.

WAC POSTS 72-48 NON-CONFERENCE RECORD
As a conference, the WAC has posted a 71-47 (.600) non-conference mark. Eight of the nine WAC schools have non-conference records of .500 or better. In the previous four years, the league posted non-conference records of 49-64 (434), 51-64 (.443), 47-65 (.420) and 58-64 (.475).

UTRGV'S ZAYAS RANKS SECOND IN CAREER DIGS PER SET
UT Rio Grande Valley libero Gysell Zayas has a career digs per set average of 4.85 which ranks second all-time in program history behind Carol Marcengo (2003-04), who averaged 5.51 digs per set on her career. Zayas is averaging 5.45 digs per set this season, which ranks second in the season record books behind Marcengo's 6.12 average during the 2004 season.

UTAH VALLEY HAS PLAYED 10 FIVE-SET MATCHES THIS SEASON
Utah Valley has played a total of 10 five-set matches this season, including a string of nine out of 11 matches. The Wolverines hold a 4-6 record in five-set contests.

CSUB'S HERNANDEZ BREAKS PROGRAM DIGS RECORD
CSU Bakersfield sophomore libero Krista Hernandez posted 37 digs in a five-set victory over Utah Valley on Sept. 29, breaking CSUB's five-set match record. Hernandez's 37 digs ranks second in the WAC this season for a single match. With 435 digs this season, Hernandez is currently seventh on CSUB's single-season list, 106 away from sixth place.

UTRGV'S OLIVEIRA RANKS IN TOP 10 FOR BLOCK ASSISTS VS. GCU
UT Rio Grande Valley's Talita Oliveira posted a career-high nine blocks vs. Grand Canyon on Sept. 27. She had eight block assists, tying for the seventh-highest single-match total in program history. The nine total blocks were one shy of breaking into the top 10.

NM STATE SENIORS MOVE UP CAREER RECORD BOOKS
NM State senior setter Briana Ainsworth currently ranks seventh all-time with 2,527 career assists. Meanwhile, Tatyana Battle ranks fourth with 3,579
career attempts and ninth with 1,247 kills, three shy of eighth place.

UTRGV'S VUKOJA RANKS SECOND ALL-TIME IN TOTAL ASSISTS
UT Rio Grande Valley senior setter Dubravka Vukoja ranks second all-time in the UTRGV record books with 2,799 total assists. She trails only UTRGV Senior Associate Athletic Director for External Operations Chelsea Blakely, who finished her career with 3,905 assists.

CSUB'S SUKHOV TIES PROGRAM SERVICE ACE RECORD
CSU Bakersfield sophomore outside hitter Desiree Sukhov finished with five service aces against UT Rio Grande Valley on Sept. 20 to tie the program four-set match record.

UTRGV'S KNUDSEN JOINS 1,000-KILL CLUB
In her team's match against Texas Tech on Sept. 14, UT Rio Grande Valley's Ragni Steen Knudsen recorded her 1,000th career kill. Knudsen now ranks fourth with 1,198 career kills, 154 away from third place, and currently holds the program record for kills per set (3.67).