Volleyball Weekly Notebook (Oct. 21)
Monday, October 21, 2013
Volleyball Weekly Notebook (Oct. 21)

Halfway through the league schedule, the top five teams in the standings are separated by just three games. Illinois State and Wichita State will begin the second-half of the conference slate with league-leading 8-1 records, while UNI (7-2 MVC) and Southern Illinois (6-3 MVC) trail the Redbirds and Shockers by one and two games, respectively. Missouri State sits in fifth with a 5-4 MVC record. 

On the conference calendar, Missouri State and Wichita State will host UNI and Drake, Evansville and Southern Illinois will greet Bradley and Loyola, while Illinois State will take on Indiana State in Terre Haute.

This week, just two matches dot the non-conference slate – as Indiana State welcomes Saint Louis and Illinois State hosts Valparaiso in a pair of Tuesday night showdowns.

NCAA RPI
In the NCAA's most recent RPI ratings (Oct. 21), the Valley boasts four teams in the top-75, including Wichita State (No. 39), Illinois State (No. 62), Missouri State (No. 66) and UNI (No. 72).

Southern Illinois (No. 140), Loyola (No. 170), Bradley (No. 204), Evansville (No. 237), Indiana State (No. 275) and Drake (No. 294) round out the rest of the league rankings.

NCAA Division I Top-20 Statistical Rankings
The league has several teams and individuals that rank in the nation's top-20 in various statistical categories, including:

UNI - 12th in Digs/Set (17.29)
Wichita State - 10th in Hitting Percentage (0.286)
UNI - 20th in Kills/Set (14.19)
Wichita State - 20th in W-L Percentage (0.826)
Katie Klages, Evansville - 5th in Digs/Set (5.63)
Ashley Andrade, Wichita State - 8th in Hitting Percentage (0.453)

This week's Missouri Valley Conference Players of the Week are Wichita State's Ashley Andrade, Illinois State's Emily Orrick and Southern Illinois' Hannah Kaminsky.

MISSOURI VALLEY CONFERENCE PLAYER OF THE WEEK:
Ashley Andrade, Sr., MB, Wichita State
Andrade led the Shockers to a 3-0 week with wins over Louisville, Bradley and Loyola. She averaged 3.18 kills, 0.64 assists, 0.27 digs, 1.45 blocks and 3.91 points per set in the three matches and hit .517. In the five-set win over Louisville, she had 11 kills on 23 swings and hit .348. She also added one assist, one dig and a match-high eight blocks. In the three-set win over Bradley, she had 10 kills on 18 swings and hit .500 along with five assists and three blocks. In the three-set win over Loyola, she had a match-high 14 kills on 17 swings and hit a career-best .765. She also had one assist, two digs and a match-high five blocks.

Other Notable Performances: Amy Angelos (BU); Capris Quaites (DU); Kaitlyn Early (ILS); Loni Mackinson (INS); Maureen Carls (LU); Kaitlin Jaeger (MSU); Macy Ubben (UNI); Jessica Whitehead (SIU).

MISSOURI VALLEY CONFERENCE DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK:
Emily Orrick, Jr., DS, Illinois State
In her first season as an Illinois State Redbird, Emily Orrick continues to gel nicely as the starting libero. Orrick collected 60 digs, nine assists and two service aces over the Redbird’s two matches against Northern Iowa and Drake this past weekend. The Mackinaw, Ill., native averaged 8.57 digs per set and 1.29 assists per set while effectively locking down the back court for ISU. Consistent throughout, Orrick had 30 digs in each match while helping to limit the opposition to a combined .112 hitting percentage. The 30 dig performances tie a career-high for the former two-time community college All-American selection. Orrick also successfully converted 39 of 41 service reception chances, generating a .951 passing percentage. Against Drake, Orrick was a perfect 20 for 20 in service receptions.

Other Notable Performances: Lauren Zerante (BU); Sarah Madden (DU); Cassandra Willis (INS); Ashley Mason (MSU); Kinsey Caldwell (UNI); Alex Rivera (SIU); Ashley Andrade (WSU).

MISSOURI VALLEY CONFERENCE FRESHMAN OF THE WEEK:
Hannah Kaminsky, Fr., S, Southern Illinois
Kaminsky paced Southern Illinois in its lone match of the weekend. The freshman setter recorded her ninth double-double of the season as she tallied 51 assists and 15 digs in the Salukis’ 4-1 win over Evansville. Kaminsky also knocked in four kills for SIU.

Other Notable Performances: Capris Quaites (DU); Bree Spangler (INS); Amie Held (UNI); Dani Mostrom (WSU).

Race to the Midpoint = Regular Season Champ?
Since the inclusion of women's sports under the Valley umbrella in 1992, teams that have reached the midpoint of the season with at least a share of first-place have gone on to claim at least a share of the regular-season championship in 19 of 20 seasons. The lone exception was the 1996 Drake team that started the season 9-0, finished in second place at 16-2, a game behind Illinois State (17-1).

Currently, Illinois State and Wichita State are the midpoint leaders at 8-1. The Shockers have been the leader/co-leader at the midpoint four previous times, and each time Wichita State has won the regular-season title, while the Redbirds have been at the top of the league standings at the halfway point in three previous seasons, winning the regular-season championship in those seasons twice.

Since 1992, no team has captured the MVC conference race with more than two league losses.

Year Mid-Point Leader Record Regular-Season Champ Final Record
1992 Missouri State 8-0 Illinois St./Missouri St. 14-2
1993 Illinois State 8-0 Illinois St./Missouri St. 14-2
1994 UNI 9-1 UNI 19-1
1995 UNI 10-0 UNI 20-0
1996 Drake 9-0 Illinois State 17-1
1997 Illinois State 9-0 Illinois State 17-1
1998 UNI 9-0 UNI 18-0
1999 UNI 9-0 UNI 18-0
2000 UNI 9-0 UNI 18-0
2001 UNI 9-0 UNI 17-1
2002 Missouri State/UNI 8-1 UNI 17-1
2003 Missouri State 9-0 Missouri State 17-1
2004 Wichita State 9-0 Wichita State 17-1
2005 Wichita State 9-0 Wichita State 18-0
2006 Missouri State/UNI 8-1 UNI 16-2
2007 Missouri St./Wichita St. 8-1 Wichita State 17-1
2008 Wichita State 9-0 Wichita State 18-0
2009 UNI 9-0 UNI 18-0
2010 UNI 9-0 UNI 18-0
2011 UNI  9-0 UNI 18-0
2012 Creighton/UNI 8-1 Creighton 17-1
2013 Illinois State/Wichita State 8-1 ????? ?????