Tuesday, Aug. 31 - 7 p.m. ET
Promotion: Pepsi "Refresh Your World" Night
Sept. 3-4 - Tucson, Ariz.
Friday, Sept. 3 - 12:30 p.m. ET
Butler vs. Cal State
Friday, Sept. 3 - 7 p.m. ET
Saturday, Sept. 4 - 1 p.m. ET
The First Serve
Butler volleyball will play its first match at Hinkle Fieldhouse this season before heading to Arizona for three weekend matches. BU will host local foe Marian University Tuesday, Aug. 31 at 7 p.m. before playing Arizona, Cal State Bakersfield and Louisville Sept. 3-4.
The team’s trip to Arizona this weekend is the second of three early-season tournaments for the Bulldogs. After the tourney in Tucson, the Dawgs host a tournament at Hinkle Fieldhouse Sept. 10-11.
BU faced a series of strong tests to open the season last weekend, dropping three matches at Baylor’s tournament. The Bulldogs were edged in four sets by SMU and in five sets by Stephen F. Austin before falling 3-0 to host Baylor. Senior Jessica Wolfe was named to the all-tourney team at Baylor, averaging 4.75 kills and 4.88 points per set. For her efforts, she was named Horizon League Offensive Player of the Week.
Following this week’s four-match schedule, Butler will host Army, UNC-Wilmington and Xavier in the Butler Invitational Sept. 10-11 at Hinkle Fieldhouse.
DOGS HIT ON 21: Butler enjoyed one of its best seasons in years in 2009, winning more than 20 matches for the first time since 1997. The 21 wins was Sharon Clark’s highest mark at BU; her 2003 team went 20-12. Butler also went 9-0 at home last year and won one in-season tournament.
WOLFE THE TOP DOG IN HL: Outside hitter Jessica Wolfe, this week’s league player of the week, led the Horizon League in kills per set (4.01) and points per set (4.62) last season. She also ranked fourth in aces (0.30). Her 4.01 kills rate finished as the eighth best season of hitting in school history. Of Butler’s last five in-season tournaments dating back to last year, Wolfe has been named all-tournament in four of them.
WOLFE REGIONALLY AND NATIONALLY: Not only was Jessica Wolfe prominent among the Horizon League leaders, the 6-2 outside hitter also garnered national attention. Wolfe was named AVCA All-Midwest Region and then capture honorable mention AVCA All-America honors. Nationally, Wolfe finished 47th in kills and 44th in points.
BUTLER IN THE NATIONAL RANKINGS: BU finished the 2009 season ranked among the national leaders in three categories. The Dogs placed 43rd in kills (13.68), 42nd in digs (16.67) and 48th in assists (12.69)
COACHING MILESTONES FOR CLARK: Sharon Clark is likely to reach the record for volleyball coaching wins at Butler this season. Now in her 11th season at BU, Clark owns 156 wins, just 13 shy of Sharon Dingman’s (1992-99) record of 169. Last season, Butler’s 3-0 win over Alabama A&M on Homecoming was career victory No. 250 for Sharon Clark.
DAPRILE KEEPS DIGGING: Katie Daprile had 73
digs in the season’s opening weekend, and in the process
moved into fifth on Butler’s all-time digs list with 1,508.
The 5-11 senior has put together two of the most prolific digs
seasons in school history. After posting a school record 541 digs
in 2008, the libero recorded 556 digs last season. She ranked fifth
in the Horizon League in digs (4.48) last season.
VERA SETTING IT UP: The setter on the other end of Butler’s attack success is sophomore Gina Vera, who was named to the league’s all-newcomer squad last season. The Joliet, Ill., native stood second in the Horizon League with 10.79 assists per set last season, and she finished 45th in the national assist rankings. Vera averaged 10.17 assists per set at Baylor.
BU vs. THIS WEEK’S OPPONENTS: Butler is 18-12 all-time against its four opponents this week. The Bulldogs defeated are 16-5 against Marian and 2-7 vs. Louisville. This week will be the first time Butler meets Cal St. Bakersfield and Arizona in volleyball.
LESTER TRYING ANOTHER SPORT: Susan Lester was a standout basketball player for BU the past four years, scoring 1,275 points and grabbing 781 rebounds. The all-league hoops player, now in grad school, is spending her fifth year playing volleyball.
UP NEXT: Butler will host Army, UNC-Wilmington and Xavier in the Butler Invitational Sept. 10-11.