No. 11 Volleyball Travels North For Alaskan Road Trip

Oct. 2, 2017

WWU Volleyball | Schedule | Roster | 2017 Statistics | Career Statistics | Quick Facts | Record Book
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THIS WEEK IN WWU VOLLEYBALL

Thursday, October 5

Live Coverage

#11 WWU vs. Alaska   7 pm AKT/8 pm PT    Alaska Airlines Court

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Saturday, October 7

Live Coverage

#11 WWU vs. Alaska Anchorage   7 pm AKT/8 pm PT    Alaska Airlines Center

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All webcasts available on the GNAC channel on ROKU, Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV & Android TV

ABOUT THE VIKINGS…the 11th-ranked WWU volleyball team takes back to the road with its annual Alaskan road trip to begin a stretch of six of the next eight matches played away from Bellingham…WWU takes on Alaska (8-7, 1-5 GNAC) on Thursday and Alaska Anchorage (9-6, 4-2 GNAC) on Saturday…both matches start at 7 pm Alaskan time/8 pm PT.

THE RECORD…WWU is 11-3 overall and 5-1 in GNAC play (tied for 2nd)…5-2 in 3-set matches, while going 4-1 in 4 sets and a perfect 2-0 in 5 sets…undefeated at 6-0 when wearing dark gray jerseys…finished non-conference play with a 6-2 record (2-2 vs. ranked opponents).

2017 Record Breakdown

Overall Record

11-3

Home

4-0

Away

2-1

Neutral

5-2

GNAC Record

5-1

3-Set Matches

5-2

4-Set Matches

4-1

5-Set Matches

2-0

Ranked Opponents

2-2

By Jersey

Dark Gray

6-0

White

4-2

Light Blue

1-1

Navy Blue

0-0

THE LAST FRONTIER…the Vikings have had success playing in Alaska, winning 19 of their last 21 matches in the state of Alaska…went 3-1 in Anchorage earlier this season at the D2 West Region Volleyball Showcase…had 16-match winning streak in Alaska snapped in last season’s West Regional final falling 3-1 to eventual national runner-up Alaska Anchorage…WWU is 11-2 all-time at Alaska Airlines Center since it debuted in 2014, going 3-1 vs. UAA, with another 5 victories in the NCAA II West Regional in 2015 and 2016, and 3 wins in the D2 West Region Showcase.

TEAM STATS…the Vikings enter the week leading the GNAC and 22nd in Division II with 19.04 digs per set…16th in Division II with a league-leading 14.08 kills per set…2nd in the league in blocks (2.37/set) and assists (12.98/set)…also 3rd in the GNAC and 24th in DII with a .248 hitting percentage.

ALL AROUND ABBYAbby Phelps leads the GNAC with 12 double-doubles, and is listed amongst the league leaders in several statistical categories: Kills (4th, 3.80/set), Digs (4th, 4.88/set), Points (4th, 4.41/set), Service Aces (5th, 0.37/set) and Hitting Percentage (15th, .237).

TOUGH SCHEDULE…WWU has played one of the toughest schedules in the nation to this point, listed No. 22 for past opponents winning percentage…of 14 matches, four have come against ranked opponents (2-2) at the time the match was played…7 of 14 came against teams that were in the top 30 in the nation according to the AVCA rankings, which includes teams listed as receiving votes.

PACKED HOUSE…the home opener vs. Simon Fraser drew 1,289 fans, marking the single-game WWU Volleyball attendance record…although an early sample size, WWU ranks 4th in NCAA II with an average home attendance of 848.

ROAD WARRIORS…WWU opened the season playing its first 10 games on the road…played preseason tournaments in Florida (The Terrace Hotel Classic) and Alaska (D2 West Region Showcase), and opened GNAC play with road matches at Central Washington and Northwest Nazarene…WWU logged close to 17,450 miles in the air (and more on the ground) during the extended road trip…making its second trip this season to Alaska this week.

NATIONAL POLL…the Vikings are ranked No. 11 in the American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) Division II poll…dropped from No. 10 to No. 11 despite going 2-0 last week…preseason No. 12 ranking was 5th-higest in program history, behind only 2016 (#5), 2004 (#9), 2003 (#10) and 2008 (#10)…finished last season No. 14, the sixth time in the last seven seasons to finish in the final top 25 poll…has been present in each of the last 72 AVCA DII polls dating back to the 2012 season.

SERIES HISTORY…here is a look at the all-time history between WWU and its opponents this week:

  • Alaska → WWU leads the all-time series 41-7, including a current 17-match winning streak (dates back to 2008)…19-6 all-time in Fairbanks (21-0 in Bellingham, 1-1 neutral)…last 11 wins have been 3-0 sweeps.
  • Alaska Anchorage → WWU leads the all-time series 31-17, including an 18-9 record in Anchorage…leads the series 24-10 in GNAC contests…won 5 of last 6 vs. UAA in Anchorage and is 11-2 all-time at the Alaska Airlines Center…away team has won 8 of last 9 meetings.

WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW

  • Double-DoublesAbby Phelps leads the GNAC with 12 double-doubles (kills-digs) this season.
  • Running the Offense Brette Boesel is 2nd in the GNAC and 10th in NCAA II averaging 11.49 assists/set.
  • In the Middle Michaela Hall ranks 4th in the GNAC with a .322 hitting pct. and is T4th with 1.18 blocks/set.
  • Bopray’s Blocks Joslyn Bopray is T4th in the GNAC averaging 1.18 blocks per set.
  • 20 Win Seasons – Went 23-8 last season, securing the 27th 20-win season in program history (45 seasons).
  • The Last 6 – WWU is 129-32 (.801) over the last six seasons (85-15/.850 in GNAC play).
  • Career Double-Doubles Abby Phelps (42), Brette Boesel (26), Joellee Buckner (17), Arielle Turner (1).

CAREER RECORDS…here is a look at where current Vikings rank in the WWU record book:

  • Abby Phelps: Kills (883, 18th), Kills/Set (3.23, 9th), Digs (1108, 11th), Points (1016.0, 22nd)
  • Joellee Buckner: Digs (1165, 10th), Total Blocks (223, 20th), Block Assists (208, 17th)
  • Brette Boesel: Assists (2249, 6th), Assists/Set (8.03, 13th)
  • Michaela Hall: Total Blocks (236, 17th), Block Assists (206, 18th)
  • Kristina Tribley: Assists (2021, 10th)
  • Arielle Turner: Service Aces (90, 23rd), Aces/Set (0.39, 12th)

RECAPPING LAST WEEK…the Vikings went 2-0 last week, recording a pair of three-game sweeps vs. Concordia and Western Oregon…Abby Phelps led the way averaging 3.83 kills and 5.00 digs per set…Michaela Hall averaged a team-high 1.83 blocks per set and Brette Boesel averaged 11.33 assists  per set…crowds of 907 (CU) and 876 (WOU) attended the games.

A LOOK AT THE GNAC…the Vikings are currently tied for 2nd place in the GNAC with a 5-1 record…trail league leader and undefeated Northwest Nazarene (14-0, 6-0 GNAC)…here is a look at the current standings heading into this week’s action:

GNAC STANDINGS

CONF

PCT

OVERALL

PCT

HOME

AWAY

NEUTRAL

STREAK

Northwest Nazarene

6-0

1.000

14-0

1.000

8-0

3-0

3-0

Won 14

Western Washington

5-1

.833

11-3

.786

4-0

2-1

5-2

Won 4

Central Washington

5-1

.833

10-4

.714

5-3

3-0

2-1

Won 5

Seattle Pacific

4-2

.667

9-5

.643

2-1

3-2

4-2

Won 2

Alaska Anchorage

4-2

.667

9-6

.600

4-2

4-2

1-2

Lost 2

Simon Fraser

3-3

.500

6-8

.429

2-0

1-4

2-5

Lost 1

Montana State Billings

2-4

.333

6-9

.400

2-2

0-4

4-3

Won 1

Alaska

1-5

.167

8-7

.533

1-2

1-3

6-2

Lost 2

Concordia

1-5

.167

6-7

.462

3-2

1-3

2-2

Lost 5

Saint Martin's

1-5

.167

6-8

.429

3-3

1-4

2-1

Lost 4

Western Oregon

1-5

.167

5-8

.385

2-4

1-3

2-1

Lost 5

BOPRAY PLAYER OF THE WEEKJoslyn Bopray was named the GNAC Defensive Player of the Week for Sept. 4-10 after averaging 1.47 blocks per set in the four matches in the D2 West Region Showcase…she also averaged 1.27 kills per set during the week.

HOME SWEET HOME…the Vikings debuted WECU Court at Carver Gym with the last four matches (4-0 record), marking the first official event in the renovated on-campus facility…WWU played its home matches at Whatcom Community College in 2015-16…went 77 matches between home games at Carver Gym (59-18 record)…have a current 11-game winning streak in Carver…head coach Diane Flick-Williams has led the program to a 150-19 (.888) record in home matches, with a 134-15 (.899) record on the Sport Court at Carver Gym.

GOING THE DISTANCE…WWU is 2-0 in 5-set matches this season, beating Florida Southern and Cal State San Bernardino…over last three seasons (since 2015), the Vikings are 12-3 in matches that go to five sets (6-0 in ’15, 4-3 in ’16)…

ALL-SHOWCASEAbby Phelps and Joellee Buckner were named to the D2 West Region Volleyball Showcase All-Tournament Team out of the 'A' pod that featured the top teams in the west region playing in Anchorage…Phelps averaged 3.33 kills and 4.13 digs per set, and recorded three double-doubles in the showcase…Buckner averaged 2.53 kills and a team-high 4.80 digs per set, and also recorded 11 blocks (0.73 per set) and 5 service aces.

PRESEASON ALL-GNAC TEAMAbby Phelps and Arielle Turner were voted to the inaugural GNAC Volleyball Preseason All-Conference Team…Phelps is a two-time First-Team All-GNAC selection and led WWU and finished 8th in the GNAC with an average of 3.21 kills per set last season…Turner was also a First Team All-GNAC pick in 2016, finishing 2nd in the conference with 0.41 aces per set and 11th averaging 3.58 points/set.

GNAC PRESEASON POLL…the Vikings were voted to finish second in a tightly packed 2017 GNAC Preseason Coaches Poll, receiving three of the 11 first-place votes and a total of 109 points…finished one point back of defending conference champion Alaska Anchorage (5 first-places votes) and three points ahead of third-place Northwest Nazarene (106 points, 3 first-place votes)…the GNAC sent a record five teams to the NCAA II West Regional last year and has featured the host school for the West Regional each of the last three seasons.

20-WIN SEASONS…the Vikings have recorded 27 seasons with 20 or more victories in the 45-year history of the program…head coach Diane-Flick Williams has tallied 12 seasons with 20+ wins in her 17 seasons at the helm of the program…over the last six seasons (since 2012), WWU has combined to go 129-32 (.801), advancing to the NCAA Tournament in each season.

COACH FLICK-WILLIAMSDiane Flick-Williams is in her 18th season directing the WWU Volleyball program and is the winningest coach in program history…owns a career record of 378-102 (.788)…Flick has guided the Vikings to 12 seasons of 20 or more victories, 11 NCAA Championships, a pair Final Four appearances, 7 Great Northwest Athletic Conference championships and received GNAC Coach of the Year honors 8 times (2001-03, 2006, 2007, 2010, 2012-13)…amongst active Division II coaches, she enters the 2017 season ranked 13th in winning percentage and 34th by victories…her .788 winning percentage heading into the 2017 season is 12th-best in Division II history (min. 10 years as a DII head coach).

2016 SEASON IN REVIEW…went 23-8 overall and advanced to the NCAA II West Regional Championship, falling one win short of a repeat trip to the Elite 8…fifth consecutive trip to the NCAA Championships and 11th overall in program history…finished 2nd in the GNAC with a 17-3 mark…finished the season No. 14 in the AVCA Division II rankings, the 4th-highest in program history…fifth consecutive 20-win season…tied for the 10th-toughest schedule in the nation, facing 9 ranked opponents, including five matches vs. national championship match teams Concordia-St. Paul (0-2) and Alaska Anchorage (1-2)…had 11-match winning streak Sept. 24-Oct. 29…won 18 of 19 matches prior to falling to UAA in the West Region Championship in Anchorage…Abby Phelps, Kayleigh Harper and Arielle Turner were all named First Team All-GNAC.

INSIDE THE NUMBERS

11
WWU’s current ranking in the AVCA DII top 25.

11
The Vikings have appeared in the NCAA II Championships 11 times, including each of the last five seasons.

42
Career double-doubles by Abby Phelps, including 12 in 14 matches this season (leads GNAC in double-doubles this season).

236
Career blocks by Michaela Hall (60.0 this season) to rank 17th in WWU history.

848
Average attendance for 4 home matches this season to rank 4th in NCAA II…WWU record 1,289 attended home opener 9/19 vs. SFU.

883
Career kills by Abby Phelps (3.23 per set) to rank 18th in WWU history.

2,249
Career assists by Brette Boesel, 6th-most in program history…ranks 2nd among GNAC setters this season with 11.49 assists/set.

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