The Utes went 4-0 en route to the Utah State Invitational title.
Aug. 27, 2012
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Utah Valley Match Live Stats
Off to its best start since 2009, the University of Utah volleyball team has another busy four-match schedule this week. The Utes host their first home match of the season on Tuesday against Utah Valley. First serve against the Wolverines is at 7 p.m. MT.
Utah then returns to the road for three more matches at the UC Davis Aggie Invitational on Friday and Saturday. The Utes take on Santa Clara Friday at 11 a.m. PT, host UC Davis on Friday at 7 p.m. PT, then North Carolina on Saturday at 1 p.m. PT.
Utah is 4-0 to start this season after claiming the Utah State Invitational last weekend in Logan, Utah. Dating back to Nov. 19, 2011, Utah has won six consecutive matches.
Keep Up With the Utes: Live stats for Tuesday's match against Utah Valley will be available at utahutes.com. Access the complete schedule for the UC Davis Aggie Invitational as well as information on all three of Utah's opponents at ucdavisaggies.com.
Starting Right: Utah's four straight wins marks its best season-opening streak since 2000 and is already tied for the fourth-best in school history. Tuesday against Utah Valley, the Utes are looking to go 5-0 for the first time since 2002.
The 2000 team had the best start in school history after going 8-0, while the 1992 edition won seven straight matches at the beginning of the season.
Best Starts in Utah Volleyball History
1. 2000 8-0
2. 1992 7-0
3. 2002 5-0
T-4. 2009 4-0
T-4. 2012 4-0
Getting Defensive: The Ute defense was stout all weekend, holding its opponents to a .048 hitting percentage. That mark leads the Pac-12 Conference after the opening weekend. After finishing third as team in blocking in the Pac-12 Conference in blocking last season, Utah posted a league-high 3.29 block-per-set average over the first four matches of 2012, compared to a 2.68 mark for its opponents. The Utes outblocked their opponents in three of four matches.
Aggression on the Attack: Utah averaged 13.93 kills per set through its first four matches this season, while its opponents went for just an 8.21 clip. A distinct differential could also be seen in the hitting percentages as the Utes are currently hitting for a .234 percentage, .186 better than the mark for their oponents.
Ute Aces Are Wild: Ute servers have registered 24 aces already this season and their opponents have only turned in 11. Utah is third in the Pac-12 with 1.71 aces per set. Junior outside htiter Morgan Odale (Star, Idaho) leads the team and ranks third in the conference with nine this season for a 0.64 ace-per-set-average. Junior middle blocker Erin Redd (Spanish Fork, Utah) is second on the squad and sixth in the Pac-12 with six aces for a 0.43 clip.
MVP! MVP! MVP!: Redd was named Utah State Invitational Most Valuable Player after posting an impressive all-around performance, while helping Utah start a season 4-0 for the first time since 2009. Redd hit .395 through the weekend, which ranks seventh in the Pac-12, to go along with 2.93 kills, 1.14 blocks and 0.43 service aces per set. Redd posted a match-high 13 block assists, which sets a new school record for block assists in a five-set match, to help the Utes to their biggest victory of the weekend on Friday night over the host Utah State Aggies. It was the third double-digit block performance of her career.
All-Tournament Utes: Aside from Redd being named the MVP, three other Utes received Utah State Invitational All-Tournament Team accolades. Morgan Odale, sophomore outside hitter Chelsey Schofield (Provo, Utah) and senior setter McKenzie Odale (Star, Idaho) were each honored.