MATCH 11: Arkansas State (5-5) vs. Georgetown (6-3)
Friday, Sept. 15 • 10:00 a.m. CDT
Tudor Fieldhouse • Houston, Texas
Series: First Meeting
Live Stats: RiceOwls.com; Live Video: None
MATCH 13: Stephen F. Austin (11-2) vs. Arkansas State (5-5)
Saturday, Sept. 16 • 12:30 p.m. CDT
Tudor Fieldhouse • Houston, Texas
Series: A-State trails 5-6
Live Stats: RiceOwls.com; Live Video: None
This season marks the 43rd year of volleyball at Arkansas State and A-State has an all-time mark of 1,009-512-5 (.663) and became the 18th program in Division I history to eclipse 1,000 victories. The Red Wolves began last season with 979 wins.
The Red Wolves traveled to Conway, Ark., for the UCA Classic Sept. 7-9. A-State went 2-1 at the event with wins over UCF and Southern, while the loss came to the host Central Arkansas. A-State improved to 6-0 against UCF and 3-0 against Southern all-time, while dropping to 23-2 against the Sugar Bears. A-State is 5-5 on the year.
Kenzie Fields made her first career All-Tournament team at the competition while playing setter, a position she hadn’t played since high school, because of injuries at the position. She handed out 100 assists, had 28 digs, 10 kills, four blocks, and had a double-double.
Freshmen Madison Brown and Sara Betts both made their Red Wolves’ debuts against Southern and had their first career kills.
A-State vs. Georgetown Series History
The Red Wolves and Hoyas have never faced each other in volleyball.
Arkansas State is 9-3 against the Big East all-time, with the last matchup against a Big East school coming in 2004 when A-State dropped a 3-0 decision to Creighton at the Missouri Tiger Classic.
A-State head coach David Rehr has never faced a school from the Big East, but the Red Wolves have played Butler (2-2), Creighton (1-1), Seton Hall (1-0), Marquette (2-0), Xavier (2-0), and DePaul (1-0).
Georgetown enters the weekend with a 6-3 record and hasn’t left the Washington, D.C., area in nonconference play until this weeked. The team played in the D.C. Volleyball Classic, Service Academy Challenge (Arlington, Va.), and their host tournament, the Georgetown Classic.
A-State vs. Rice Series History
Arkansas State and Rice have played twice in history with A-State taking both meetings over the Owls.
The Red Wolves won the first meeting over the Owls at the Rice Invitational II in 2010 by a score of 3-2 before taking a 3-1 decision in 2012 at the Rice University Invitational.
A-State head coach David Rehr is 1-0 against Rice all-time with the win in 2012 over the Owls. The win over Rice was the first win of his career at Arkansas State and was the second match he coached in after falling to BYU to open the tournament.
Arkansas State is 116-78 against schools currently in Conference USA and has played every school in the league at least once. Most of A-State’s matchups came against former Sun Belt foes North Texas, Western Kentucky, Florida Atlantic, Florida International, Middle Tennessee and Louisiana Tech.
Head coach David Rehr is 3-9 against teams currently in C-USA with five of those meetings coming against WKU as a SBC member. Last season, A-State played the No. 19 Hilltoppers at the Marcia E. Hamilton Classic in St. Louis, but dropped a 3-1 decision.
Rice enters the weekend with a record of 7-4 including a 3-1 win over SMU, who defeated A-State on Sept. 2 by a score of 3-0. The Owls have also played SBC foe Louisiana and swept the Ragin’ Cajuns.
A-State vs. Stephen F. Austin Series History
The Red Wolves are 5-6 all-time against the Ladyjacks, but won the last meeting between the two schools 3-0 in 2015 at the Golden Hurricane Classic in Tulsa, Okla. Carlisa May posted 15 kills on a .423 hitting percentage in the match, while Markie Schaedig tallied 22 digs. Mallory Warrington handed out 32 assists, while Darby Graff and Anna Murphy had five and four blocks, respectively.
A-State is 110-44 all-time against current Southland Conference schools after dropping a 3-1 decision to Central Arkansas last week.
Prior to winning the 2015 meeting with the Ladyjacks, A-State had lost two straight matches to Stephen F. Austin in 2006 and 2010 with the 2010 contest taking place at a tournament hosted by Rice. The Red Wolves defeated SFA in 2004, but lost to the Ladyjacks in 1995 and twice in 1993 after topping the team 3-0 in 1991. Arkansas State won meetings in 1988 and 1989, but lost the first meeting between the two schools in 1987.
David Rehr is 1-0 against SFA all-time and has a 6-1 record against teams from the Southland Conference.
Stephen F. Austin enters the weekend with an 11-2 mark with two of their wins being sweeps over SBC teams ULM and Little Rock, but their second loss was to the Sun Belt’s Texas State on Sept. 12.
Red Wolves Win Two of Three at UCA Classic
A-State made the short drive to Conway to take on Central Arkansas, UCF, and Southern at the UCA Classic Sept. 7-9. The Red Wolves lost to UCA, but defeated Central Florida and Southern to improve to 5-5 on the year.
The loss to UCA was just the second in 25 matches against the Sugar Bears for the Red Wolves. Kenzie Fields had to step in at setter and handed out a career-high 37 assists, while Drew Jones tallied a season-high 17 kills in the match. Tatum Ticknor had 23 digs in the match to lead the team.
The Red Wolves bounced back with a 3-1 win over UCF to improve to 6-0 all-time versus the Knights. Drew Jones led the team with 13 kills and Carlisa May registered 10. Tatum Ticknor finished one dig shy of a career high with 26, while Kenzie Fields posted her first double-double of the season with 35 assists and 14 digs.
A-State claimed a 3-0 triumph over Southern to improve to 3-0 all-time against the Lady Jaguars. Peyton Uhlenhake recorded a career-high 11 kills, while Madison Brown (four) and Sara Betts (three) posted their first kills of their careers in their first career action. Brown also added three blocks, while Betts had one as well. Madison Turner had a career-high two kills and a career-high three blocks, while Ryley Gill had her first career kill and service ace.
Fields Earns First Career All-Tournament Nod
Redshirt sophomore Kenzie Fields had to fill in at setter due to injuries and earned her first career All-Tournament selection of her career at the UCA Classic.
In her first action at setter since high school the Bartlett, Tenn., native handed out 100 assists for a 9.09 per set average and had 28 digs, 10 kills, and four blocks.
She picked up her first double-double of the season against UCF with 35 assists and 14 digs. Fields registered six double-doubles a season ago.
A-State Goes 1-2 at Home Tournament
A-State hosted Virginia Tech, SMU, and Ole Miss in this season’s version of the A-State Invitational and the Red Wolves lost to Virginia Tech 3-1 on Friday night (Sept. 1) before dropping a 3-0 decision to SMU Saturday morning. The team rebounded with a 3-1 victory over Ole Miss Saturday night (Sept. 2).
In the loss to Virginia Tech, the Red Wolves fell to 9-20 all-time against ACC schools with Coach Rehr moving to 1-2 against them. A-State now leads the all-time series with the Hokies 2-1. Carlisa May led the team with 22 kills to give her three 20+ kill matches on the year, which is a new career high. Drew Jones was second on the team with 15 kills and had 10 digs for a double-double. Madison Turner registered her first career kill and block.
The 3-0 setback to SMU dropped A-State to 49-45 all-time against AAC schools and Coach Rehr to 5-3. A-State had also lost its only other previous meeting to the Mustangs. A-State only hit .099 in the match to mark the first time since Aug. 30, 2014 versus Auburn that the Red Wolves were held under a .100 hitting percentage, a span of 96 matches.
However, the Red Wolves bounced back with a solid win over Ole Miss 3-1 on Saturday night. Carlisa May led the team with 17 kills, while Drew Jones (11) and Jessica Uke (10) also registered double-digit kills. Tatum Ticknor led the team with 23 digs. The win over an SEC foe was the first in 10 tries for Coach Rehr and improved A-State to 21-36 against Ole Miss and 53-65 against teams in the SEC.
This is the second straight year and only the second time the Red Wolves have hosted a home tournament under head coach David Rehr. The Red Wolves went 2-1 in last season’s event with 3-0 wins over UCA and UT Martin and a 3-0 loss to Tulsa, who went undefeated in the tournament.
Records indicate that A-State’s first home non-conference tournament was in 1988 and has hosted 26 all-time with an all-time record of 78-12 in the events. The team had only posted a losing record in a home tournament once prior to this season in 2007 (1-2).
A-State’s Drew Jones was named to the All-Tournament team at the A-State Invitational after registering a double-double in each match, all in kills and digs.
She posted 40 kills and 37 digs overall with 15 kills and 10 digs against Virginia Tech, 14 kills and 14 digs versus SMU, and 11 kills and 13 digs in the win over Ole Miss.
The Fort Smith, Ark., native leads the team with five double-doubles this year to give her 13 for her career. As a team, A-State only had seven double-doubles in kills and digs last season.
For her efforts Jones was named to the A-State Invitational All-Tournament squad, her fourth career all-tournament nod.
Ticknor Earns SBC Defensive Player of the Week
Freshman libero Tatum Ticknor earned her first career weekly award Monday when she was named the SBC Defensive Player of the Week.
The Grapevine, Texas, native picked up 79 digs for a 5.27 per set average to take home the honor. She had 25 digs in the midweek win over SIU and had 23 more in the win over Ole Miss. She’s posted double-digit digs in all but one match this season, which was when she got nine against Kentucky when she didn’t start the match.
Ticknor continued her strong play at the UCA Classic with 59 digs for a 5.36 per set average. She continues to lead the Sun Belt with a 5.43 per set average that ranks as 21st best in the nation.
May Takes Home All-Tournament; SBC Honors
A-State’s Carlisa May was named to the All-Tournament team at the Bluegrass Battle after tallying 45 kills for a 4.50 per set average that leads the Sun Belt Conference. The Lee’s Summit, Mo., native also added 22 digs, six blocks, two assists, and one ace. The All-Tournament accolade was the sixth of her career.
Additionally, the junior outside hitter garnered SBC Offensive Player of the Week honors for her effort in week one. It’s the 11th weekly award in her career and fourth OPOW award.
May had 50 digs a season ago and already has 40 two weeks into the season. She’s got 114 total kills to rank first in the league and 18th in the country, while her 4.56 kills per set mark is first in the SBC and 22nd in the nation.
She has a season-best of 23 kills versus Southern Illinois and has three matches of 20+ kills a season ago, matching A-State’s total as a team and setting a new career high for her. She leads the squad with 143 kills for a 4.27 per set average that ranks as second in the league and 37th in the country.
Watkins Named Setter of the Week
Junior Ellie Watkins picked up SBC Setter of the Week honors after her performance at the Bluegrass Battle in her first weekend at Arkansas State after transferring from Pittsburgh. She handed out 111 assists for an 11.10 per set average that leads the conference.
Additionally, the Weldon Spring, Mo., native posted 13 kills on a .520 hitting percentage, 18 digs, four blocks, and a team-high three service aces.
What a Senior Class
Arkansas State lost five seniors off last season’s team in Markie Schaedig, Mallory Warrington, Kelsey Reis, Jessica Heuertz, and Shelby Holmes.
Schaedig and Warrington were both All-Americans a season ago, with Schaedig earning the school’s first All-American honor as a sophomore in 2014. Schaedig ended her career with the third most digs in school history (2,153). Warrington became the ninth member of the 1,000-1,000 Club with 4,296 career assists and 1,183 digs. The 4,296 assists were the third most in school history. Schaedig was a three-time SBC Defensive Player of the Year, while Warrington received the Setter of the Year award from the league twice.
Reis was no slouch as she was a back-to-back First-Team All-Conference performer and finished her career with 399 blocks, good for eighth most in school history. She is also responsible for the seventh-highest hitting percentage in school history of .302. Heuertz played in 121 matches in her career with 684 digs as a defensive specialist, while Holmes played in 65 with 246 kills.
A-State has eight newcomers on the squad.
Red Wolves Non-Conference Notes
A-State is 5-5 this year in non-conference action with wins against the AAC, SEC, SWAC, and Missouri Valley. The losses came to the PAC-12, SEC, ACC, Southland, and AAC. A-State will take on opponents from the Big East, Conference USA, and Southland at its final nonconference tournament.
Arkansas State went 8-6 in non-conference last season with wins against teams from the ACC, Big 10, Summit League, Southland (2-0), Atlantic 10, Big West, and Ohio Valley.
The losses were to teams from the Big 12, SEC, American Athletic, Horizon League, Missouri Valley, and Conference USA.
The two wins over teams from “Power” leagues (North Carolina State and Indiana) are the most in a single season for A-State since 2000 when the Red Wolves defeated Marquette and LSU.
The Red Wolves are now 41-33 in nonconference action under head coach David Rehr.