Widgets Magazine

Stanford looking to build momentum against Colorado as postseason play lies ahead

No. 7 Stanford women’s volleyball (18-6, 12-4 Pac-12) returns to Maples Pavilion to take on Colorado (16-12, 8-8) this Thursday evening. Dropping one spot in the rankings after last week’s loss to now-No. 2 Washington, Stanford seeks to establish momentum before heading into postseason play.

Four-time Pac-12 Freshman of the Week and outside hitter Hayley Hodson (above) is currently leading the team with 3.85 kills per set. She also ranks second behind senior setter Madi Bugg with 2.50 digs per set. (MACIEK GUDRYMOWICZ/stanfordphoto.com)

Four-time Pac-12 Freshman of the Week and outside hitter Hayley Hodson (above) is currently leading the team with 3.85 kills per set. She also ranks second behind senior setter Madi Bugg, marking 2.50 digs per set. (MACIEK GUDRYMOWICZ/stanfordphoto.com)

When Stanford and Colorado faced off in Boulder earlier this season, Colorado won in four sets, and Stanford fell to its lowest ranking yet this season. But Stanford bounced back from that loss to a six-game winning streak that was only recently snapped.

This time, the Cardinal have home-court advantage against the Buffs, and they have only lost one match at Maples this season. Stanford leads the all-time series with Colorado, 14-1.

The Buffaloes will put up a strong fight. Coming off of upset wins against then-No. 21 Arizona State and then-No. 19 Arizona, Colorado has a chance to enter the top 25 of the AVCA Coaches’ Poll if it continues to play well.

Senior outside hitter Alexis Austin will pose a big offensive threat to the Cardinal. Ranked fifth in the conference in kills, Austin paces the team with 4.04 kills per set. Her particularly strong performances against the Arizona teams led her to be named the Pac-12 Offensive Player of the Week. Over the course of those two wins, Austin hit .408 and managed to record 4.62 kills per set.

Senior setter Nicole Edelman coordinates the offense with 1,059 assists this season for an average of 9.81 assists per set – good enough for seventh place in the Pac-12.

Freshman middle blocker Naghede Abu is also on the conference leaderboard, as her 1.20 blocks per set place her eighth, just behind Stanford’s Merete Lutz.

As a team, Stanford has been dominant of late, winning all but one of its last eight matches. October’s five-set victory over Washington proved something of a turning point for the Cardinal. Since then, they have surrendered only one set to an unranked opponent and have swept four of their last seven matchups.

Look for the Cardinal to continue their well-balanced attack when they take on Colorado. Three players are averaging more than 3 kills per set, with freshman outside hitter Hayley Hodson leading the team with 3.85. Junior middle blocker Merete Lutz comes in second with 3.22 kills per set, while also ranking seventh in the Pac-12 with 1.22 blocks per set. Senior outside hitter Brittany Howard rounds out the top three with 3.03 kills per set.

The Cardinal will look to build momentum as they kick off their three-match homestand. They face off against the Buffs in Maples Pavilion at 4 p.m. on Thursday, Nov. 19. The match will be streamed live on GoStanford.com.


Contact Olivia Hummer at ohummer ‘at’ stanford.edu.

About Olivia Hummer

Olivia Hummer '17 is a managing editor of The Daily's sports section and writes about volleyball, football and baseball. When she's not filling in as an emergency copy editor, she can be found curled up in a ball bemoaning the misfortunes of her beloved Seattle Mariners or cursing the misuse of the Stanford Athletics logo. Olivia is a senior majoring in history from Covina, California, and can be reached at ohummer 'at' stanford.edu.
  • jimidavis.com (soulful indie)

    Elephant In The Farmhouse

    Painful is the only way to describe the Cardinal serve/receive in last week`s match against Washington. Stanford players sacrificing skin, diving in different directions attempting to retrieve and pass “tough” serves as Coach Dunning refers to the incoming round missles.
    Husky High level free points did not stand out as much as the Cardinal lack of serving.
    Yes, Stanford`s most effective server, Hayley Hodson, was missing in action, but her
    absence only magnified the sore issue of Stanford`s sad serving state of affairs.
    Coach Dunning, (the creme da la creme of collegiate volleyball coaching) revealed
    earlier in the season, that he doesn`t micro-manage players`serving style or choices.
    It appears his laissez-faire leadership on team serving has evolved with mixed results.
    But why are we having this backward conversation at the tournament`s door steps?
    Hear-me-right! Stanford volleyball has a legitimate ALL AMERICAN OFFENSE,
    Stunning Blocking and a Star Wars Defense Shield when all their “planets” line-up!
    Why is Stanford serving mediocre? “Where your treasure is, there your heart will be also”

  • jimidavis.com (soulful indie)

    Peaceful Focus -The Nerve To Serve

    Peaceful Focus: A Clear Mind and a Confident Heart,
    Cultivated in Truth and Trust; opposite of perfection/expectation/frustration.

    Peaceful Focus helps you relax, “lock” into the moment, and serve Fearlessly!
    Peaceful Focus helps balance mechanical transtitions for consistent follow-through.
    Peaceful Focus forgets the past and negotiates *stress issues for future consideration.
    Peaceful Focus frees information filters for processing and recognizing space in serving.
    Peaceful Focus accepts and applies the team`s winning game plan for aggressive serving.
    *Note: “Most” stress issues are false and fade…

  • jimidavis.com (soulful indie)

    PT.1: Serving On The Curve
    PT. 2: Is God Mexican?

    Cardinal serving was much improved against Colorado: lower to the net, “darting” movement, accuracy to space and staying peacefully focused with minimal errors.
    But observing Cardinal serving is like forgetting to put HOT SAUCE on your taco; something is missing… Spicy Bite! Stanford`s serves lack speed and dynamic breaks.
    Yes, much of their serve selection is “off-speed”, but when the majority of serves are slow, opponent`s eyes recognize and respond with “drooling” confidence, and transition into “high and hard kills” (as Washington volleyball players preach in PAC-12 interviews!)
    Pass the jalapenos, please!
    PT: Dos
    Most Musical lovers agree the timeless masterpiece,”The Messiah”, floated down from heaven into Handel`s heart for all the world to hear in majestic purity and atomic power!
    Is it possible that God is Mexican? Angels appearing in Mexico, (disguised as priests) treating warm, souful, artistic Mexican families to tasty chicken fajitas, chile rellenos, beef enchiladas, and chile verde nachos all complemented by harmonic rice and frioles!
    Gettin`n hungry, here!

  • jimidavis.com (soulful indie)

    Stanford Serving Steps Up In Time For The Holidays! Hal..lelujah! Hallelujah! Hallelujah!!

    How refreshing to witness Cardinal “TROUBLE” serves disarming Utah`s transition, and positioning Stanford`s defense/offense to dictate pace and play in “FRONT” of the point!
    The Cardinal tapped into their coaching, courage and skill to take reasonable risks and
    put Purpose, Power, Spin, Angle & Effect into their “trouble-making” serves>>~- to space!
    Fine-tuning Cardinal “dink” defense and critical accurate passing in these next 2 matches
    will eliminate “egg on your face” inconcinnities and create the special “mileu” required for competitive completeness and peaceful focused performance in the NCAA tournament.