AMES, Iowa – The West Virginia University volleyball team will kick off the month of November with a trip to Ames, Iowa, where the Mountaineers will square off with Iowa State on Wednesday in a 7:30 p.m. ET match at Hilton Coliseum.
This week marks the second meeting between the Mountaineers (12-12, 3-7) and the Cyclones (12-9, 4-5). The two last met on Sept. 30, when Iowa State picked up its first Big 12 win of the season with a 3-2 triumph in Morgantown. WVU hit .290 to ISU’s .337 in the match with nine team blocks. Payton Caffrey
hit .339 with a team-best 29 kills while Mia Swanegan
hit .391 with 10 kills. Katelyn Evans
hit a team-best .441 with 17 kills in the loss. Iowa State leads the series 11-1 and is 4-0 in Ames.
“I think we’re got some good momentum going after our win over Texas Tech,” said coach Reed Sunahara. “Iowa State is a very good team, who’s made it to NCAAs, so it will be a good challenge for us. We played them tough at our place and did some nice things, but couldn’t come away with the win.”
WVU is coming off a five-set win over Texas Tech on Saturday at the WVU Coliseum. Caffrey led the Mountaineers with her tenth double-double of the season, netting 23 kills and 12 digs.
The Mountaineers’ five-set win over the Red Raiders marked the seventh time this season WVU has gone to a fifth set. West Virginia went to five against Indiana State, Marshall, Morehead State, TCU, Iowa State, Kansas State and Texas Tech and is 4-3 overall n those matches and 2-2 in conference play. Payton Caffrey
leads the team with 167 kills for an average of 4.77 per set in those matches, while Mia Swanegan
averages 1.53 blocks per set for a total of 46.
West Virginia posted a team-high 18 blocks in Saturday’s match, surpassing the previous team high of 16.5 (vs. Oklahoma on Oct. 8). Swanegan led the effort with nine block assists, while Erin Slinde
had seven and Hannah Shreve
added six. The Mountaineers are tied for first in the league in blocking with 2.56 blocks per set.
Slinde has put up career numbers against both K-State and Texas Tech. The freshman setter had a career-high 10 blocks and was just two assists shy of her career best with 27 assists in the loss to the Wildcats on Oct. 22. She proceeded to shatter her career mark with 49 assists in the win over the Red Raiders on Saturday.
Though she’s known for her blocking prowess, Swanegan has contributed to the Mountaineers’ offensive efforts all season long. In Saturday’s five-set win over Texas Tech, the junior middle blocker tied her career high with 13 kills, hitting a team-best .320 in the process. Swanegan ranks third on the team with 1.93 kills per set and a .236 attacking percentage. She’s also third with 12 service aces on the season.
After adding 16 digs this weekend against TTU, Gianna Gotterba
enters Wednesday’s tilt with a career total of 996 - just four shy of her 1,000th dig. A total of 1,118 would tie for 10th on the school’s all-time digs list. Gotterba is sixth in career digs among active liberos in the Big 12.
The Mountaineers return home to host Kanas State on Wednesday at the WVU Coliseum. The match is scheduled for a 6 p.m. start.