VB to Host Pair of Top 10 Opponents
Nov. 9, 2017

Purdue vs. Minnesota
Friday, Nov. 10 / 5:30 p.m. ET
Holloway Gymnasium / West Lafayette, Indiana
Live Stats / Watch / Listen

Purdue vs. Wisconsin
Saturday, Nov. 11 / 7 p.m. ET
Holloway Gymnasium / West Lafayette, Indiana
Live Stats / Watch / Listen

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - No. 21 Purdue (18-7, 8-6 B1G) has an opportunity to make a statement as the Boilermakers are set to host No. 5 Minnesota and No. 10 Wisconsin at Holloway Gymnasium. Purdue seeks redemption against the Golden Gophers while this is its first and only time this season the Boilermakers will square off with the Badgers.

Due to men's basketball's season opener in Mackey Arena, the Boilermakers are slated to take on Minnesota on Friday, Nov. 10, at 5:30 p.m. ET before they host Wisconsin on Saturday, Nov. 11, at 7 p.m. With both events taking place Friday evening, fans attending the volleyball match must park in the R-Lot as the F-Lot is reserved for personnel with men's basketball F-Lot parking passes.

The Golden Gophers have yet to lose a match since their loss to Nebraska on September 29, giving them 11 consecutive wins over Big Ten opponents. The streak includes Purdue's first meeting with the Golden Gophers in Minneapolis, Minnesota, in which the Boilermakers' four-match winning streak was snapped by a three-set loss. The Badgers are just 7-7 this season in Big Ten play but have registered key wins over No. 20 Michigan and No. 4 Nebraska. Last season, the Boilermakers were edged in five sets by Wisconsin in both meetings with Kelly Sheffield's crew.

Purdue is coming off a big weekend in which it nearly upset No. 6 Nebraska on its home floor and finished the weekend with a five-set victory over Iowa. Ashley Evans registered her 1,000th career dig against the Cornhuskers to become the first Boilermaker in program history with 3,000 assists and 1,000 digs in their career. She's the 18th Boilermaker to reach the 1,000-career dig milestone.

Evans has set her hitters well all season as the Boilermakers' .319 hitting percentage this season ranks third in the nation, but she has set three hitters in particular to a whole new level. Danielle Cuttino finished the weekend hitting .494 with 47 kills to average 5.22 kills per set with ten blocks in the middle. Sherridan Atkinson was right behind her with 36 kills, 4.00 kills per set, a .375 hitting percentage and seven blocks on the right side. Azariah Stahl seems to elevate her game each week as she complimented Purdue's offensive output with 18 kills and a 2.00 kills per set average. However, it has been her ability to contribute in all areas that has been most impressive as she also registered an ace, eight blocks, 24 digs and a 2.67 digs per set average.

The four upperclassmen have been remarkable over the course of the last five matches as Evans has set the offense to a .325 hitting percentage with Cuttino and Atkinson averaging 3.75 and 3.65 kills per set respectively. Cuttino is hitting .397 with 75 kills and 20 blocks in that span while Atkinson is hitting .444 with 73 kills, 10 blocks, 23 digs and five aces. Stahl has 50 kills with a 2.50 kills per set average and a .242 hitting percentage while adding 15 blocks, three aces and 41 digs for a 2.05 digs per set average.

Brooke Peters continues to improve her play in her first season as Purdue's libero as she averages 3.74 digs per set in conference play. Jena Otec has complemented Peters' efforts in the back row with a 1.52 digs per set average against Big Ten opponents but has made the biggest impact with her serve. The freshman has aced Big Ten defenses 16 times which is tied for the third most in the conference and is the best total among first-year student-athletes in the Big Ten.

Notes

  • Purdue advances to No. 21 in this week's AVCA Top-25 Coaches Poll and has been ranked in all 12 polls this season. The Boilermakers boast the nation's 25th best RPI.
  • Purdue's total home attendance of 26, 270 fans this season ranks 15th in the nation.
  • Purdue is hitting .319 this season and ranks third in the country.
  • Ashley Evans is averaging 11.31 assists per set ranking her third in the conference. She ranks fourth in the Big Ten since conference play began as she is averaging 11.26 assists per set through 14 Big Ten matches.
  • Danielle Cuttino is hitting .348 this season with a 4.09 kills per set average. Her kills per set average is good for second in the Big Ten and she ranks second in total kills with 352. Cuttino is averaging 4.22 kills per set with 211 kills in Big Ten play to rank second in the conference in both categories.
  • Brooke Peters continues to improve in her first season as Purdue's libero as she has earned a 3.74 digs per set average in conference play. The average is the second best in the conference among first-year liberos.
  • Since the beginning of Big Ten competition, the Boilermakers have aced opponents 58 times to average 1.16 service aces per set and rank sixth in the league. Azariah Stahl and Jena Otec combine for 30 of Purdue's 58 service aces against Big Ten opponents. Otec leads all freshmen with 16 service aces in league play.
     

     

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