Air Force Set to Host 2011 Falcon Invitational

    Victoria Foster

    Victoria Foster

    Sept. 6, 2011

    The Air Force volleyball team returns to the Academy this weekend to host the 2011 Falcon Invitational at Falcon Court at East Gym. The Falcons will host Utah Valley on Friday, Sept. 9, at 7 p.m., before facing South Carolina-Upstate (11 a.m.) and Northern Arizona (7 p.m.) on Saturday, Sept. 10.

    Match Notes 03: Falcon Invitational Get Acrobat Reader

    Air Force's tournament will feature two matches on Friday and four on Saturday - a complete schedule is below. All six matches will have live stats available on, while Air Force's two 7 p.m. matches will be video-streamed.

    5 p.m.: Northern Arizona vs. South Carolina-Upstate
    7 p.m.: Air Force vs. Utah Valley

    11:00 a.m.: Air Force vs. South Carolina-Upstate
    1:00 p.m.: Utah Valley vs. Northern Arizona
    5:00 p.m.: South Carolina-Upstate vs. Utah Valley
    7:00 p.m.: Air Force vs. Utah Valley

    There are several promotions lined up for Air Force's matches at the Falcon Invitational. It will be Family Friday on Sept. 9, where fans can purchase four tickets for $4. In addition, the first 200 fans will receive Air Force mesh shorts. On Saturday, Sept. 9, fans attending the 11 a.m. match can redeem their ticket stub for free admission to the 7 p.m. match. The Falcons' evening contest will feature an ice cream sundae bar (while supplies last) and fans can receive free admission with their ticket stubs from the morning match or the TCU football game.

    Utah Valley is 5-2 on the season, although the Wolverines will host BYU Hawaii before traveling to Colorado. Utah Valley's match against Air Force will mark the first time this season that UVU has played outside of Orem. South Carolina-Upstate is 2-4, while Northern Arizona is a perfect 6-0. Saturday's match between NAU and Utah Valley will be the second time that the two teams have faced off this year, as the Lumberjacks defeated the Wolverines in four on Aug. 27.

    Air Force is 1-1 against Utah Valley and holds a 2-1 lead in its short series history with Northern Arizona. The Falcons have never faced South Carolina-Upstate.

    Maiya Perich was voted as the Best Libero of the Denver Invitational by the tournament coaches and Ayesha Hein was also selected to the all-tournament team. It is the second straight week that the pair has earned all-tournament honors. Perich dug 70 balls over the weekend, led all players in digs during all three Air Force contests and successfully converted 104 of 110 serves. Hein recorded 37 kills and eight total blocks over the three-match weekend, highlighted by a hitting clip of .500 (15k-1e-28a) in the Falcons' win over Bryant.

    Cami Richan and Ayesha Hein combined for 30 kills as Air Force defeated Bryant in four sets at the Denver Invitational (Sept. 2).

    Maiya Perich set a new Air Force Division I single-match record on Sept. 1, as she accounted for 36 digs in the Falcons' 3-2 loss to Denver. Perich, who easily broke the program's four-year old record of 29, was one of three Falcons to tally double-digit dig totals as the squad combined for 80 total digs.

    As the Division I single-match record-holder, Maiya Perich is in good company on the program's digs list. Current assistant coach Louella Maxwell holds the program's all-time record with 45 digs in a match during the 1993 season.

    Air Force collected its first set win over Northern Colorado (25-21) since 2004.

    After the two weeks of action, Air Force leads the Mountain West with 1.88 service aces per set, while Josalynn Wise (fifth, 0.39) and Ayesha Hein (ninth, 0.36) are ranked among the conference's top 10 in service ace production. In addition, Wise and Hein are tied for first in the league with their respective four-ace outings against Northern Colorado and Bowling Green.

    In addition to the Falcons' standings in ace production, Air Force players are listed among the league's top 10 in other categories. Maiya Perich is ranked third with 4.56 digs per set, while Hillary Keltner is ranked seventh with 7.08 assists per set. Ayesha Hein is ranked seventh in hitting percentage (.344) and eighth in both kills (2.92 per set) and points (3.60 per set), while Cami Richan is tied with Hein for eighth with 2.92 kills per set and ranked ninth with 3.32 points per set.

    Air Force is the youngest team in the country, as 93.7% of its roster is made up of freshmen and sophomores. The Falcons edged out Buffalo (92.8%), as those were the only two programs in the nation to feature a roster with at least 83% of its team in either their first or second-year of competition.

    The Air Force volleyball team is on Facebook! Just type "Air Force Falcons Volleyball" in the search box and become a fan today for the most up-to-date information on the volleyball program.

    The Falcons will conclude the non-conference tournament season on Sept. 16-17, when they travel to Davis, Calif., for the annual Aggie Invitational. Air Force will face Seattle on Sept. 16, before facing UC Davis and Hofstra on Sept. 17.



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