Volleyball team posts win in 1st day of Nike Portland Invitational during pre-Big 12 play


    Coming off the heels of a 2-1 showing in the Mortar Board Premier, the K-State volleyball team earned a 3-1 win over California, Irvine in the Nike Portland (Ore.) Invitational.
    K-State, ranked No. 20 in the American Volleyball Coaches Association poll, entered the tournament in pursuit of coach Suzie Fritz’s 150th career win. Before the game, Fritz was just one victory from the milestone.
    In addition, she is just 20 wins shy of becoming the winningest volleyball coach in school history.
    The Wildcats began tournament play with a Thursday evening showdown against the California, Irvine. K-State entered the match with an 0-1 mark against the Anteaters, with the only meeting coming in 1984.
    Action will resume at 2 p.m. today when the Wildcats take on Arizona State, followed by a 9:30 p.m. match against tournament host Portland, a team that K-State holds a 1-1 all-time record against.
    Today’s matchup will be the first meeting between the Wildcats and Sun Devils.
    The team will wrap up tournament play with a Saturday afternoon finale against the University of South Florida. The Wildcats also faced the Bulls in 2003 and the all-time series is tied at one.
    The Wildcats entered the season ranked No. 14 in the AVCA preseason poll, but fell six spots after dropping a 1-3 decision to then-No. 25 Purdue in the final match of the Mortar Board Premier on Aug. 30.
    No other team participating in the Portland Invitational received votes in this week’s poll.