MALIBU, Calif. - The final week of the pre-conference season has arrived for the #18 Pepperdine women’s volleyball team, and brings with it matches against #2 UCLA, #11 Florida State, #21 Ohio State and Houston. The Waves travel to Westwood on Wednesday, Sept. 12 to face the defending NCAA champion Bruins before traveling to Houston for the Flo Hyman Collegiate Cup on Sept. 14-15.
MATCH 9 - Wednesday (Sept. 12) at John Wooden Center: #18 Pepperdine (6-2, 0-0 WCC) at #2 UCLA (6-1, 0-0 Pac-12) at 7 p.m. Television: Pac-12 Network
MATCH 10 - Friday (Sept. 14) at Athletics/Alumni Center: #18 Pepperdine vs. #11 Florida State (6-1, 0-1 ACC) at 9:30 a.m. (PT)
MATCH 11 - Friday (Sept. 14) at Athletics/Alumni Center: #18 Pepperdine vs. #21 Ohio State (8-1, 0-0 Big Ten) at 2:30 p.m. (PT)
MATCH 12 - Saturday (Sept. 15) at Athletics/Alumni Center: #18 Pepperdine at Houston (1-6, 0-0 C-USA) at 9:30 a.m. (PT)
COVERAGE - The Pepperdine vs. UCLA match will air live on the newly formed Pac-12 Network with Anne Marie Anderson and Holly McPeak calling the action. To see if the Pac-12 Network is available in your area, see the station’s channel finder.
Live stats will be available for all four of the Waves’ matches. Additionally, a fee-based video broadcast is scheduled for Saturday’s match against Houston. For links to all available media, visit the women’s volleyball schedule page.
LOOKING BACK - The Waves opened the Rams Volleyball Classic on a flat note, losing to Colorado State in three sets. After dropping the opening frame to New Mexico State the following day, Pepperdine got back on track and defeated the Aggies 3-1. The momentum carried over into the match versus Florida International, which the Waves won handily at 3-0.
WEEKEND NOTABLES - Kellie Woolever was named to the Rams Classic All-Tournament team after posting 11.20 assists/set, 2.40 digs/set, 1.70 kills/set and a .429 hit. % last weekend. Jazmine Orozco was also an all-tournament selection after pacing the Waves with 3.50 kills/set while hitting .286 and collecting 1.50 digs/set. Kelley Larsen had a strong day vs. New Mexico State with a career-high 12 kills and four blocks. Alyssa Mason provided support off the bench with 3.20 kills/set.
LOOKING FORWARD - Pepperdine opens West Coast Conference action next week beginning at BYU on Sept. 20. The week continues with a home contest on Sept. 22 versus Portland.
PEPPERDINE ASICS CLASSIC - The Waves won their annual home tournament last weekend with wins over Cal State Fullerton and Arizona. Victoria Adelhelm was named Most Valuable Player after averaging 2.75 kills/set earned on a staggering .611 hitting percentage. The senior additionally led the team with 1.12 blocks/set. Jazmine Orozco (4.25 k/s, .307 hit. %) and Michaela Christiaansen (4.12 d/s) were named to the all-tournament team. Pepperdine also got A+ performances from Kellie Woolever (11.25 a/s, 5.38 d/s) and Taylor Racich (3.57 k/s).
UCLA - The Bruins, ranked #2 in the latest AVCA Coaches Poll, are 6-1 with their only loss coming from top-ranked Nebraska ... UCLA’s offense is led by Rachael Kidder (3.79 k/s), Tabi Love (3.65 k/s) and Karsta Lowe (2.82 k/s) ... The last time the Waves and Bruins met was on Sept. 7, 2011 inside Firestone Fieldhouse ... Pepperdine, led by Kim Hill’s 24 kills, won 3-2 (21-25, 26-24, 21-25, 25-20, 15-13) to give UCLA its first loss of a season in which they would end 30-6 and as NCAA champions.
FLORIDA STATE - The Seminoles are 6-1 after losing their ACC opener to Miami 3-1 last week ... FSU is balanced on offense and sees output from Fatma Yildririm (2.70 k/s), Elise Walch (2.29 k/s), Olivera Medic (2.50 k/s) and Marija Milosavljevic (1.96 k/s) ... The Seminoles reached the Final Four of the 2011 NCAA Tournament, before losing to UCLA in the semifinals.
OHIO STATE - OSU re-entered the rankings at #21 this past week after defeating Dayton, IUPUI and Western Kentucky at the WKU Tournament ... The Buckeyes are on a six-match win streak and their only loss came on Aug. 25 against Oregon ... Mari Hole averages 4.14 kill/set for Ohio State, followed by Emily Danks with 3.37 kills/set ... Amanda Peterson and Taylor Sherwin share setting duties with 8.57 and 7.62 assists/set, respectively.
HOUSTON - The Cougars are 1-6 after dropping to UTSA in four sets last week Friday ... Houston’s only win of the season was against Lipscomb ... Katie Norris averages 4-00 kill/set to lead the Cougars, while Natalie Keck defends the backcourt with 4.00 digs/set.
NOTING THE WAVES - Pepperdine is 728-424-2 all time and 303-73 in West Coast Conference play ... Nina Matthies is 561-322 and is in her 30th season at the helm ... The Waves have out-killed their opponents in all eight matches this season.
BEST OF THE WEST - Pepperdine averages the most kills (14.57) and assists (13.57) of any West Coast Conference school ... The Waves are tied for third in hitting percentage (.250), fifth in opponent hitting percentage (.187), seventh in digs (14.61), fifth in blocks (2.14) and seventh in eighth aces (0.93).
SINGLED OUT - Victoria Adelhelm has the highest hitting percentage (.424) in the West Coast Conference ... Adelhelm also ranks fourth in blocks (1.21) and 10th in service aces (0.32) ... Kellie Woolever ranks third in assists (11.11) and ninth in digs (3.32) ... Michaela Christiaansen ranks seventh in digs (3.71) ... Jazmine Orozco ranks sixth in kills (3.43) ... Taylor Racich ranks 10th in kills (3.07 kill/set).
RANKINGS - Pepperdine opened the 2012 campaign listed at #11 in the AVCA Coaches’ Top-25 Preseason Poll and is currently sitting at #18 in the polls.
DAYTON FLYER CLASSIC RECAP - The Waves had a solid start to 2012, shutting out Ohio and #7 Illinois in three sets before suffering a 3-1 set back to Dayton. Victoria Adelhelm was named to the all-tournament team after registering a team-best 2.70 kills/set, a .420 hit. % and 1.40 blocks/set. Kellie Woolever, with 10.90 assists/set and 2.60 digs/set, was also voted to the all-tournament team.
Victoria Adelhelm - Senior Victoria Adelhelm, who has been in the starting lineup since her freshman year in 2009, has put her veteran status on display in 2012 and has played at a consistently high level the entire season. She’s hitting a WCC-leading .424 and ranks second on the team with a 2.46 kills/set average. Against Cal State Fullerton, the senior pounded home 10 kills on 14 errorless attempts for a career-high .714 clip.
Jazmine Orozco - Illinois transfer Jazmine Orozco has made a huge impact for Pepperdine in her short time with the Waves. She leads the team with 3.43 kill/set and is the only player to have reached the 20+ kill milestone in a single match this season. Orozco tallied a tied-for-career-best 21 kills vs. Arizona. She was voted to both the Pepperdine Asics Classic and Rams Volleyball Classic All-Tournament Teams.
Kellie Woolever - Junior Kellie Woolever is back for her third season as the Waves’ starting setter. Dubbed “one of the best setters in the country” by Matthies, Woolever was an All-WCC preseason selection in 2012. She picked up AVCA All-American and All-Pacific Region honorable mention accolades, and was an All-WCC first team pick in as a sophomore 2011. She was named to the Dayton Flyer Classic All-Tournament team after averaging 10.90 assists/set and 2.60 digs/set. At the Asics’ Classic, she averaged 11.38 assists/set and 5.38 digs/set, including a 25-dig performance against Arizona. She picked up all-tournament team honors for a second time this past weekend at the Rams Classic after scattering 11.20 assists/set and averaging 1.70 kills/set while hitting .429.
Taylor Racich - Freshman Taylor Racich made her first start of the season against Cal State Fullerton and did not disappoint. From the right side, Racich paced the Waves with 17 kills earned on a blazing .438 (17 kills-3 errors-32 attempts) hitting percentage. The freshman added five digs and five blocks for a match-high 19.5 points. In the follow-up match against Arizona, Racich came through with a clutch kill and service ace in back-to-back points to help lift Pepperdine to a 15-12 win in the fifth and deciding set.
CHECK THE RECORD - Victoria Adelhelm currently ranks seventh all-time at Pepperdine with 357 blocks. With 364, the senior will move up into the sixth spot and 366 would move her to fifth place ... Kellie Woolever has dished 2,725 assists to rank sixth. With 874 more assists, the junior takes over fifth place ... Adelhelm’s career hitting percentage entering her senior year as a Wave stood at .315 which counts as the seventh-highest clip all-time in Malibu. Her current career percentage of .324 ranks sixth ... With 142 blocks in 2011, Samantha Cash nearly set a new rally scoring era single-season record. Sophia Milo holds to top spot with 143 blocks in 2005.
SOCIAL HUB - There are several ways to interact with the Waves online. Fans can follow the women’s volleyball team on Twitter @PepperdineWVB and “like” the team on Facebook by searching for Pepperdine Women’s Volleyball. You can follow “PepperdineWaves” on Instagram, or subscribe to “Pepperdine Athletics” on YouTube. Visit PepperdineSports.com for the Waves’ complete social media directory.
WAVECASTS - All Pepperdine women’s volleyball home matches are broadcast live and for FREE via WaveCasts. In addition to live broadcasts, WaveCasts also offers a large selection of game highlights, interviews, features and more!
TICKETS - Single-session prices are $8 for adults, $5 for students/seniors/children and free to all Pepperdine students, faculty and staff with a valid Pepperdine ID. An all-sports pass, which provides admission to all Pepperdine home sporting events, with the exception of men’s basketball, is $100. Call the Ticket Office at (866) WAVE-TIX for more information.
Nina Matthies - Now in her 30th season as head coach of the Waves, Nina Matthies’ career record currently stands at 561-322 (.635), which includes 11 conference championships and 19 NCAA Tournament appearances. She is by far the WCC’s all-time winningest coach and is a 10-time WCC Coach of the Year, most recently winning the award in 2011. Matthies was among the world’s top players and is a member of the Beach Volleyball Hall of Fame. In 2009, Dig Magazine rated her and former partner Linda Hanley as the second-best women’s beach team of all time. She won two AIAW national championships as a player at UCLA.
2012 WCC PRESEASON COACHES POLL - The Waves were picked to finish third in the West Coast Conference, behind Saint Mary’s and San Diego, who were tied for first in the vote. BYU was voted to finish fourth followed by San Francisco, Loyola Marymount, Santa Clara, Portland and Gonzaga. Kellie Woolever and Samantha Cash were voted to the preseason all-conference team.
OLYMPIC CONNECTION - Pepperdine assistant coach Marcio Sicoli guided Misty May-Treanor and Kerri Walsh Jennings to an unprecedented third gold medal at the London Olympics in 2012. He follows in the footsteps of the Waves’ Troy Tanner, who was May-Treanor and Walsh Jennings’ coach in 2008. In fact, a coach with Pepperdine ties has directed a gold-medal winning beach team at three of the last four Olympics.
2011 RECAP - The Waves had a banner year in 2011, finishing the season with a 25-7 record and ranked #6 in the final AVCA Coaches’ Poll. After winning the WCC title with a 15-1 record, Pepperdine played host to the NCAA first and second rounds. Pepperdine shut out Missouri State and North Carolina, before blanking Kansas State in the regional semifinals in Honolulu, Hawaii. The Waves nearly upset top-ranked USC in the regional final, but the Trojans escaped with a narrow 3-2 victory. Kim Hill was named an AVCA first team All-American, while Kellie Woolever earned a mention on the honorable mention squad. Pepperdine reaped several conference awards, including a WCC Player of the Year in Hill and a Freshman of the Year in Samantha Cash. All-WCC first team honors were given to Hill, Cash, Woolever and Lilla Frederick, while Stevi Robinson was voted to the honorable mention squad. Cash and Katie Messing were named to the WCC All-Freshman squad.
SAND VOLLEYBALL - In the inaugural season of collegiate sand volleyball, Pepperdine was unmatched among the first set of schools to adopt the NCAA emerging sport. Led by former beach great Nina Matthies, the Waves steamrolled the competition and posted a 14-0 overall record. At the AVCA Collegiate Sand Volleyball National Championships in Gulf Shores, Ala., the Waves posted wins in the double-elimination team event over College of Charleston and Long Beach State twice. It was Pepperdine’s 12th national championship by its teams, but first by a women’s program. Lilla Frederick, Kim Hill, Caitlin Racich and Summer Ross were named All-Americans. Racich and Ross won the pairs title a day later, fighting off three match points in the third and final set to beat the 49ers’ Caitlin Ledoux and Tara Roenicke.
ABOUT PEPPERDINE - Pepperdine boasts a one-of-a-kind athletic department with unprecedented success for a school of its size. The Waves have won NCAA Division I championships in five different men’s sports - one of just 16 schools to have accomplished this feat - and nine overall. Of this elite group, Pepperdine has the smallest enrollment and is the only school not in a major conference. Located in scenic Malibu, Calif., the university overlooks the Pacific Ocean and its campus and athletic facilities are regularly voted among the nation’s most beautiful. Pepperdine, which is affiliated with the Church of Christ, ranks #55 overall on U.S. News and World Report’s list of America’s best colleges.