THIS WEEK: Dakota State (4-6 overall record) continues their busy schedule this week. The Trojans will be playing four matches in seven-day span, starting Tuesday night at Presentation (S.D.) (1-7). First serve is set for 7 p.m. at the Strode Center in Aberdeen, S.D. DSU travels to Briar Cliff (Iowa) (6-5) on Thursday night before returning home to start their seven-match home stand at DSU Fieldhouse. Match time for DSU-BC match is 7 p.m. at the Newman Flanagan Center in Sioux City, Iowa. DSU entertains Concordia (Neb.) (3-6) on Saturday at 1 p.m. and in-state rival Mount Marty (1-7) next Monday (Sept. 17) at 7 p.m.
LAST MEETING: Dakota State swept the season series with Presentation (S.D.) last season. The Trojans recorded a hitting percentage of .323 to sweep the Saints in three straight sets (25-11, 25-13 and 27-25) at the Strode Center in Aberdeen, S.D. on Sept. 14, 2011. DSU hit .359 versus Presentation at the DSU Fieldhouse on Sept. 28 for a 3-0 victory (25-18, 25-14 and 25-18). Briar Cliff defeated Dakota State in both teams' season opener at the DSU Fieldhouse on Aug. 24 in a five-set thriller. The Trojans jumped to a 2-0 match lead (26-24 and 25-18), while the Chargers won the next three sets (25-23, 25-13 and 15-8) to gain a 3-2 match victory. Both teams struggling in hitting percentage where BC hit .083 compared to the Trojans' .045. Concordia (Neb.) won the last meeting with DSU on Sept. 11, 2010 in the Hastings Classic. The Bulldogs won by the score of 25-22, 25-23 and 25-15. Dakota State smashed 64 kills on Sept. 4, 2012 to defeat in-state rival Mount Marty in a five-set thriller. The Trojans posted scores of 25-19, 22-25, 25-19, 21-25 and 15-8 at the Cimpl Arena in Yankton, S.D. The Trojans had won the last seven meetings with the Lancers.
ENCORE, DIPAOLA: Kristen DiPaola nearly posted an encore performance on Sept. 4, 2012 as she recorded 30 kills in DSU's 3-2 victory over Mount Marty at the Cimpl Arena. She posted the second most attacks in a single match in DSU volleyball record book. DiPaola currently holds the school record of 31 kills in a single match, which happened in the same arena (Cimpl Arena) when DSU defeated Mount Marty 3-2 after trailing 0-2 in the match.
DSU GOES 2-2 AT CORN PALACE CLASSIC: Dakota State struggled in the first day of the Corn Palace Classic on Sept. 7 in Mitchell, S.D. The Trojans suffered 3-0 defeats to NCAA Division II South Dakota Mines (25-13, 25-22 and 25-20) and Clarke (Iowa) (25-15, 25-20 and 25-16). The Trojans bounced back in the winning column on Sept. 8. DSU defeated Saint Mary (Neb.) in three straight sets (25-22, 25-18 and 25-18). Dakota State concluded the classic with a four-set victory over in-state rival Dakota Wesleyan (27-25, 28-26, 25-16 and 25-15). The Trojans had won the last four meeting with the Tigers. Kristen DiPaola was named to All-Tournament team.
INDEPENDENT VOLLEYBALL JAMBOREE: Six independent schools will play in the Independent Volleyball Jamboree at DSU Fieldhouse on the weekend of Sept. 21-22. Teams included in the jamboree are host-team Dakota State, Ashford (Iowa), Jamestown (N.D.), Mayville State (N.D.), South Dakota Mines and Valley City State (N.D.). The jamboree hits off at 10 a.m. on Sept. 21 and 9 a.m. on Sept. 22 with six matches scheduled on each day.
DSU IN THE NATIONAL RANKINGS: According to the NAIA-DakStats statistical website, Dakota State ranks 31st in the nation in digs per set (17.0) and 43rd in total digs (681). Kristen DiPaola leads the Association of Independent Institutions (A.I.I.) in kills per set (4.8) and ranks second in the nation. She is sixth in the nation in total kills (193). Stacey Schuller is 33rd in the nation in total assists (365) and 47th in assists per game (9.1). Katie Green ranks 37th in total digs (197) and 43rd in digs per set (4.9).
TROJANS QUICK LEADERS: Katie Green leads DSU with eight service aces and 197 digs. Kristen DiPaola records a total of 194 attacks this season. Stacey Schuller amasses 365 set assists. Taylor Mosco records 33 blocks (0.8 blocks per set).
REGIONALLY SPEAKING: Dakota State remains at No. 6 spot in the latest edition of the independent weekly rankings. The rankings are used to determine for teams to qualify for the Association of Independent Institutions (A.I.I.) post-season tournament in November. The rankings are (overall record): 1) Cal State San Marcos (13-5); 2) La Sierra (Calif.) (10-6); 3) Jamestown (N.D.) (9-2); 4) Mayville State (10-3); 5) Ashford (Iowa) 5-5); 6) Dakota State (S.D.) (4-6); 7) Valley City State (N.D.) (1-11) and 8) Rochester (Mich.) (3-11).
COACHES' CORNER: Amy Veenhof enters her fourth season as head coach at Dakota State. She has coached three all-conference players and seven NAIA Academic All-American scholar athletes. Megan Kusler is in her first season as an assistant coach.
STAY CONNECTED: Stay connected with Dakota State volleyball and athletics all season long at www.dsuathletics.com. The Trojans are also on Twitter; just log onto www.twitter.com/GoDaSUAthletics. The Dakota State University Athletics can be found on Facebook.
WATCH IT: Presentation (S.D.) will be carrying a live video webcast on Tuesday night. The link can be found on http://www.ustream.tv/channel/saintsid. On Thursday, Briar Cliff will have a live stream on http://www.bcuchargers.com/f/BC360.php. All Dakota State home volleyball matches will be webcast live and free of charge. Fans wanting to follow the action can go to the following link: http://streaming.dsu.edu/Athletics-Live. The link also will be available on www.dsuathletics.com in the 'Live Games' tab above the Upcoming Events.'
LIVE STATS/PLAY-BY-PLAY: Live stats and play-by-play will be available in all Dakota State's home games. The live stats link is available on game day on www.dsuathletics.com under 'Live Games' tab above the 'Upcoming Events.'
UP NEXT: Dakota State will be hosting the Independent Volleyball Jamboree on Sept. 21-22. Six independent teams will be competing in the jamboree. They are: host-team DSU, Ashford (Iowa), Jamestown (N.D.), Mayville State (N.D.), South Dakota Mines and Valley City State (N.D.) Each team will play four matches in the tournament. All the matches will be held at the DSU Fieldhouse. There will be a total of six matches on each day, starting at 10 a.m. on Sept. 21 and 9 a.m. on Sept. 22. The Trojans will play Ashford (Iowa), Valley City State (N.D.), South Dakota Mines and Mayville State (N.D.) in the jamboree.
Nick Huntimer, Dakota State University Sports Information Director