Green Bay/Country Inn & Suites Tournament
Head Coach Kelly Sheffield will begin his fourth season with the Flyers on Friday.
Green Bay, Wis.
Kress Events Center
; $7 adult, $4 senior, $1 youth
Coverage: Live Stats
(Tournament subscription rate available for $7.99)
No. 19 Dayton vs. North Dakota, 5:30 p.m. ET
James Madison at Green Bay, 8:00 p.m. ET
No. 19 Dayton vs. James Madison, 12 p.m. ET
North Dakota at Green Bay, 1:30 p.m. ET
North Dakota vs. James Madison, 5:30 p.m. ET
No. 19 Dayton at Green Bay, 8 p.m. ET
No. 19 Dayton will hit the road to open the 2011 season on Friday against North Dakota in the Green Bay/Country Inn & Suites Tournament in Green Bay, Wis. The four teams participating this weekend – Dayton, Green Bay, North Dakota and James Madison – won a combined 75 matches in 2010.
Dayton has won the last six season-openers entering this weekend. Of those six teams, five went on to advance to the NCAA Tournament. It is the third time in four years under Head Coach Kelly Sheffield that the Flyers have began the season on the road – trekking to tournaments Arizona State in 2008, Purdue in 2009, and at home in 2010.
Dayton began each of the last two seasons with winning streaks – 10 in 2009 and five in 2010. In both years, Dayton went on to capture the Atlantic 10 Regular Season and Tournament crowns.
Scouting the Competition
North Dakota (25-5, 12-0 Great West)
The Fighting Sioux finished 2010 on a 15-match winning streak to capture the Great West Conference title for the second time … North Dakota returns seven starters from last season’s Championship team, but lose Great West Player of the Year, Erin Joki … Head Coach Ashley Hardee holds a 47-11 record entering her fourth season with the program … Despite having won the last two Great West postseason tournaments, UND has not been to the NCAA Tournament as the Great West is not an automatic bid conference … Next season, North Dakota will join the Big Sky Conference.
Green Bay (12-19, 8-8 Horizon League)
Host Green Bay was picked to finish fifth in the Horizon League … The Phoenix return senior outside hitter Abbey Gitter – who led the team in kills, libero Brittany Groth – who led the Horizon League in digs per set … Green Bay is coached by Debbie Kirch, who is 148-274 in her 15th season with the program.
James Madison (22-8, 10-4 Colonial)
Second-year head coach Lauren Steinbrecher is leading the Dukes in the right direction after a solid 10-4 conference campaign in 2010 and an overall 11-win improvement from 2009 to 2010 … James Madison was picked to finish second in the Colonial Athletic Association in the preseason … The Dukes return three starters and the libero from last season … Outside hitter Danielle Erb was the team leader in kills last season with 3.41 kills per set … Libero Natalie Abel averaged 2.95 digs per set as a Third Team All-CAA selection.
All About the Rankings – No. 19
Dayton will begin the 2011 season nationally ranked for the second consecutive year and the 20th consecutive week as the AVCA Preseason Poll tabbed the Flyers No. 19 ... UD’s No. 19 position to begin the season is the highest preseason ranking in program history, after beginning 2010 at No. 21 ... Dayton will face six teams which received votes in the preseason top 25, including No. 8 Illinois, T-No. 24 Tennessee, T-No. 24 Michigan, Pepperdine, Florida State and Notre Dame.
Top 25 History
Dayton's streak of 20 consecutive weeks in the top 25 began on Nov. 23, 2009, ranked No. 24 ... The Flyers’ highest position in the AVCA poll is No. 12, which came on the weeks of Oct. 15, 2007 and Nov. 22, 2010 ... The 2010 Dayton volleyball squad became the first team of any sport in Dayton history to be nationally ranked for the entire season after finishing with a No. 15 ranking in the final AVCA poll ... Dayton finished the 2009 season ranked No. 25.
Dayton graduated perhaps one of the most fruitful Senior classes in program history last season, which included two All-Americans and four first-team all-conference players … Filling the void are five new freshmen and a group of hungry returners ready to take Dayton to the next level … Returning to the lineup are senior outside hitter Yvonne Marten, junior libero Paige Vargas and junior outside hitter Rachel Krabacher.
Marten ranked sixth in the A-10 in blocks per set (0.89) last season and this season looks to take on a role in the back-row left available by the graduation of First Team All-Conference outside hitter Amanda Cowdrey … Krabacher will again be the Flyers’ top option on the outside after totaling 965 swings last season, averaging 2.75 kills per set … Vargas has started for UD since her freshman season and is taking on an active leadership role as an upperclassman as she approaches 1,000 career digs.
Home-Opener Moved to UD Arena
Dayton’s home-opener on Friday, Sept. 9 against Pepperdine has been moved to UD Arena … The move was made to accommodate the 1,000-plus elementary school students participating in the “Spike Out Bullying” event on Friday morning … The match is followed by Florida State and Michigan during the Dayton Marriott Flyer Classic … Dayton will then return to the Frericks Center on Friday evening for a 7 p.m. ET match with Florida State … All four teams in the 2011 Dayton Flyer Classic (Sept. 9-10) received votes in the AVCA preseason poll.
For the fourth consecutive year in 2010-11 Dayton brought home the AVCA Team Academic Award, given to programs with a team GPA of 3.3 or higher … Dayton is one of three top 15 teams to be given the award this season with Cal and Stanford … Dayton and Fordham are the only two teams from the Atlantic 10 Conference to earn the award.
Packin’ the House
Dayton volleyball finished the 2010 season ranked 31st in national attendance, averaging 1,244 fans per home contest ... The highest crowd at the Frericks Center last season was 1,802 against Fordham on Oct. 2 ... The Flyers are coming off back-to-back undefeated home regular seasons.
Defense Wins Championships
Dayton was named College Volleyball Update
’s national 2010 Defensive Team of the Year … UD held opponents to an NCAA defensive-best .127 hitting percentage while averaging 2.95 blocks per set and 17.25 digs per set – finishing in the top 10 for both of CVU’s blocking and digging awards … The Flyers led the Atlantic 10 in digs in 2010 and have led the conference in opponent hitting percentage and blocks the past two seasons … Three-time All-American Lindsay Fletemier and A-10 Student-Athlete of the Year Becky Novacek both averaged more than one block per set in 2010 … Libero Paige Vargas and First Team All-Conference performer Amanda Cowdrey became the only teammates in the A-10 to finish with 400 or more digs in each of the past two seasons.
2010 Team Accomplishments
Atlantic 10 Regular Season Champions
Atlantic 10 Tournament Champions
NCAA Championship Second Round
National Defensive Team of the Year by College Volleyball Update
Ranked No. 15 in the final AVCA Coaches Poll
Nationally ranked in the top 25 for 19 consecutive weeks
First team in UD Athletics history to be ranked in the top 25 for the entire season
First team in UD Athletics history to make the NCAA Tournament in four consecutive seasons
Reached the program’s highest ranking in the AVCA Coaches poll at No. 12 (11/22) and the NCAA RPI at No. 9 (11/1)
Ranked No. 12 in the final NCAA RPI
First undefeated Atlantic 10 regular season in program history (15-0)
23 match winning streak
25 match home winning streak