Oct. 3, 2003
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The Air Force volleyball team will truly be tested at home this weekend when the host BYU (Oct. 3) and Utah (Oct. 4). The Falcons, who are 10-4 and undefeated in conference matches, are off to one of their best starts ever at the Division I level. They are coming off a 3-0 win over New Mexico and hope to keep their momentum rolling.
Air Force vs. BYU -- Oct. 3 at 7 p.m.
Air Force vs. Utah -- Oct. 4 at 7 p.m.
East Gymnasium (1,000)
The matches against BYU and Utah mark the second weekend of conference play. Records are below:
Air Force -- 10-4 (1-0 MWC)
BYU -- 10-4 (1-1 MWC)
Utah -- 7-6 (1-1 MWC)
AIR FORCE vs. BYU:
The Falcons have defeated the Cougars just one time in the team's history. Last season, Air Force upset BYU in Provo, marking the first time in school history that a women's team defeated the Cougars in a head-to-head match up. AFA is 1-9 all-time against BYU:
The Cougars had been working their way up the polls and were poised to crack the top 25 before being swept by Colorado State at home. That loss snapped a five-match winning streak. They are led by Kim Wilson, who is averaging 4.02 kpg. April Varner is also having a great year (3.57 kpg). Uila Crabbe leads the team with 3.51 dpg, while setter Lauren Richards is averaging 11.45 apg.
AIR FORCE vs. UTAH:
The Falcons have never defeated the Utes in 10 meetings. In 1999, the team came close, losing in five games.
Utah's 7-6 record may be a bit deceptive, as the Utes are still a powerhouse and a contender for the MWC championship. They lost to CSU at home, but have defeated several solid teams, including nationally ranked Missouri. They are led by the dynamic duo of Kim Turner (3.78 kpg) and Shelly Sommerfeldt (3.69 kpg). Turner also leads the team with 2.51 dpg. Setter Kelsie Kartchner is averaging 10.59 apg and and 1.82 dpg.
OPPOSING PLAYERS TO WATCH:
The two players who did the most damage against the Falcons last season were Allison Larsen and Karina Puikkonen. Both have graduated. Utah's Turner had 27 kills in six games against the Falcons last year (4.5 pg) and six blocks.
Entering the Portland State tournament, two players were ranked in the top 10 nationally. Kristin Huitt was sixth in the nation in assists per game. At the time, she was averaging 13.86 apg. Delavane Diaz was averaging 5.75 kills, which ranked eighth in the nation. It marks the first time in the team's Div I history that two players ranked in the top 10 nationally. They are both currently ranked in the top 25 nationally at their respective categories.