ASU Volleyball travels to Kansas to participate in the Kansas Volleyball Invitational
From Arkansas State University
SERVING IT UP: The Arkansas State volleyball team will travel to Lawrence, Kansas to participate in the Kansas Volleyball Invitational. They will play Nebraska-Omaha, Tulsa, Sam Houston State and Kansas.
FIRST VICTORY: Head Coach David Rehr collected his first victory as a Division I head coach with the win over Rice Aug. 25.
KILL IT: Jasmine Terry tied her career high for digs with 18 against Rice. She previously had 18 digs against Troy in 2010 as a sophomore.
DIG IT: Taylor Szypulski set a new career-high with 16 digs against Rice on Saturday.
ALL-TOURNAMENT TEAM: Kelsie Hodges and Megan Baska were each named to the Rice Invitational All-Tournament team.
RECORD WATCH: Junior libero Megan Baska moved into 9th place on the all-time digs list with 1,117 for her career. She collected 57 total digs over the weekend at the Rice Invitational to move up from 11th place.
DOUBLE-DOUBLES: Amanda Chaparro, Allison Kearney and Taylor Szypulski all had double-doubles against Rice on Aug. 25. Chaparro notched 10 kills and 10 digs against the Owls, while Kearney had 55 assists and 11 digs. Szypulski added 15 kills and 16 digs to complete the trifecta.
SIBLING RIVALRY: Megan Baska's brother, David Baska, is entering his junior season as a punter on the Air Force Academy football squad.
NEW FACES: ASU welcomed three new faces to the 2012 squad. Freshmen Hannah McRee and Haley Townsend join the squad after enjoying solid prep careers. Kelsey Sullivan joined the team after transferring from Pittsburg State and will have two years of eligibilty remaining.
THE REHR FILE: David Rehr was named the seventh head coach in ASU volleyball history after serving as the head volleyball coach at Blinn College the previous nine years. During his time at Blinn he led the Buccaneers to two NJCAA National Championships (2008 and 2011), was a two-time NJCAA National Tournament Coach of the Year, a three-time AVCA Southwest Region Coach of the Year and a nine-time NJCAA District Coach of the Year.
LOOKING AHEAD: As another volleyball season approaches, the excitement surrounding the Arkansas State Red Wolves volleyball program continues to build. There have been of changes over the last year that have raised the level of excitement around the program.
The Red Wolves enjoyed a successful 2011 campaign that saw them finish the season with a 20-11 record and 12-4 record in conference play which earned the squad a third straight Sun Belt Conference Western Division Crown and their first Western Division crown outright since 1998.
Building on the momentum from three straight winnings seasons, Director of Athletis Dr. Dean Lee announced Jan. 11 that David Rehr had been selected as the seventh head coach in school in school history, giving the coach his first Division-I head coaching job after enjoying a successful stint at the junior college level. Rehr came to Arkansas State after serving as the head coach at Blinn College the previous nine years. During his time at Blinn he led the Buccaneers to two NJCAA National Championships (2008 and 2011), was a two-time NJCAA National Tournament Coach of the Year, a three-time AVCA Southwest Region Coach of the Year and a nine-time NJCAA District Coach of the Year.
Rehr worked quickly to establish his first coaching staff, and hired Jessicca Weynand to serve as assistant coach. Weynand previously worked with Rehr at Blinn College where she helped lead the team to the 2011 NJCAA National Championship with a perfect 38-0 record that ended with four-set victory over Western Wyoming in the championship match. Rehr also added assistant coach Jeremy Thornburg in August to serve as the team's travel coordinator, video coordinator and assistant in the day-to-day operations of the volleyball program.
Upon being named head coach, Rehr immediatly began working on his first recruiting class that included a junior college transfer from Pittsburg State and an incoming freshman. The pair will have large task to fill the void left by Cayla Fielder, who was one of the most successful players in A-State volleyball history.
With a strong recruiting class a talented group of returning players the excitement for the 2012 season is high. The Red Wolves return 12 lettermen, including five starters and its libero. Among the returning players are All-SBC second team selections Allison Kearney and Ashley Tipps. Kearney, a senior, is among the best setters in the SBC and ranks eighth on the all-time ASU career assists lists. Tipps enjoyed a career season finishing with career bests in kills, hitting percentage, matches played and a career low in hitting errors.
Senior Jasmine Terry will anchor the front line attack for A-State. In 2011 she was second on the team with 314 kills and a .255 hitting percentage. Junior Shelby Crncic also returns and was among the team's best servers, while seniors Kelsie Hodges, Taylor Coughlin and Amanda Chaparro will provide leadership and will see increased time in 2012.
Libero Megan Baska will anchor the defense after another strong year. She is 11th on ASU's all-time career digs list and had a career-high 40 digs against Alabama-Birmingham which was the third most in the rally scoring era in Sun Belt Conference history.
LAST TIME OUT: The Arkansas State volleyball team opened its 2012 home slate with a 25-17, 25-19, 25-19 victory over Memphis at the Convocation Center on Tuesday night.
The match marked the first time in over a year that ASU (2-2) volleyball team had played in The Convo and it was also the first meeting between the Red Wolves and Tigers (0-4) since 2009.
The Red Wolves controlled the pace for much of the match and out hit the Tigers .297 to .198. Memphis also committed 11 errors on the night, while ASU finished with a sideout percentage of 70 percent.
"It is nice to get win at home," ASU volleyball coach David Rehr said. "We played really well which is really good. A good Memphis team came in and we just kind of handled our own business. We played the scouting report really well and we did what we are supposed to do and played as team. If we play as a team we are tough to stop."
A-State received even distribution from its attackers on the night. Taylor Szypulski collected seven of her team-high 10 kills in the first set, while Ashley Tipps and Kelsie Hodges each added eight. Amanda Chaparro and Jasmine Terry each had seven kills, while Allison Kearney led ASU with 33 assists on the night. Megan Baska led the team with 11 digs.
The Red Wolves quickly jumped out to a 17-11 lead in the first set thanks to the play of Szypulski. The redshirt-sophomore helped the Red Wolves to a .406 attacking percentage in the set and put away the set with a block assists on the final point.
The blocking game proved useful in the second as well, as the Red Wolves combined for three blocks during the frame to help them take a 2-0 advantage in the match.
Memphis briefly held a 7-6 lead in the third set, but ASU pulled away late, including collecting the match's final four points to put away the Tigers in a three-set sweep.
"The crowd was fantastic," Rehr said. "For a Tuesday night with a lot of other distractions going on around town it was really good and hopefully we can get even more people here the next time we play. The crowd was awesome and it was awesome to play in front of all those people."
The Red Wolves will return to the courts Aug. 31-Sept. 1 at the Kansas Invitational where they will play four matches in two days. The field includes Kansas, Nebraska-Omaha, Same Houston State and Tulsa.