Wildcat volleyball team to start big week off with No. 22 Cyclones

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After two big wins against West Virginia University and Baylor University, K-State’s volleyball team will look to keep their winning streak rolling Wednesday night against Iowa State University. 

Last season, the Wildcats fell to the Cyclones, losing both matches in straight sets. However, this is not the same Iowa State squad that K-State struggled against in 2011. The Cyclones are currently 8-5 and are No. 22 in the nation, while the Wildcats hold a near perfect record at 15-1 and come in to the match ranked No. 14.

The Wildcats will have an advantage playing inside of Ahearn Field House. K-State is 8-0 this season when playing in front of their home crowd, while Iowa State is just 1-3 on the road.

K-State will look to build off last Saturday’s victory in Waco, a place they had not won in since 2008. Senior middle blocker Alex Muff discussed what that win meant for the team.

“We lost the first set at Baylor just like we did at Oklahoma, but we didn’t give in,” Muff said. “It showed our level of maturity. At OU, we struggled in the first set and it affected us the rest of the way, and we were not able to overcome the deficit. Against Baylor, we showed more resilience, and were able to get the victory.”

Junior middle blocker Kaitlynn Pelger continues to pave the way for the Wildcats this season. Pelger earned her second Big 12 Player of the Week award for her performances against West Virginia and Baylor last week. 

The player to watch for on the Cyclones’ team is freshman hitter Mackenzie Bigbee. Coming out of high school, Bigbee was ranked No. 36 in the nation by Prepvolleyball.com, named a first team Under Armour All-American and is leading the Cyclones in kills so far this season.

Despite playing the two teams that were picked ahead of them in the Big 12 preseason rankings, Muff said her teammates are focused on themselves and playing their game.

“Right now, we have to worry about our side of the net,” she said. “We can’t go into the match against Iowa State and think that this is the team that beat us last season. We are both different teams, and we are looking forward to the challenge of beating a great team in front of our fans.”

Opening serve is scheduled for 7 p.m. at Ahearn Field House.

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