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Aug. 5, 1997

1996 Volleyball Season in Review

LUBBOCK, Texas -- When Jeff Nelson arrived two seasons ago, he set a goal of building a national championship-caliber volleyball program at Texas Tech University. After two years, that goal could soon become a reality.

With two-straight NCAA Tournament appearances and an impressive 47-win total, it appears he is well on his way towards achieving his goal.

In 1996, the Red Raiders won 25 matches and advanced to the NCAA Tournament for the second-straight season and the fifth time in school history. The 25 wins were the most for a Red Raider team since 1990. Also, Texas Tech was the first Big 12 team to reach the 20-win plateau in the league's first year.

The Raiders were also ranked in the AVCA/USA Today and Volleyball Magazine top-25 for the majority of the season. Tech finished No. 26 in the AVCA/USA Today poll. Tech also won four tournament titles along the way including its first Red Raider Classic championship since 1991. Other tournament titles included the Nevada-Taco Bell, New Mexico State Roadrunner and Northwest Times Invitationals.

Senior Jill Burness completed her career as a Red Raider as one of the most accomplished players in school history. She was named the GTE/CoSIDA Academic All-America of the Year and was a Rhodes Scholar finalist. Burness set school records in hitting for a season and career and recorded at least one block in each of the 67 matches she played during her Red Raider career. Also, senior Cristine Martin set a school record for most aces in a season with 55.

A win over nationally-ranked and defending national champion Nebraska highlighted a 12-8 record and 6th-place finish in the first season of the Big 12. Other top-flight wins included victories over Kansas State, as well as come-from-behind wins over Colorado and Baylor.

Texas Tech also set records for attendance as it doubled its previous year's totals. Attendance topped the 10,000-mark for the season for the first time ever and the Red Raiders also had five matches that exceeded 1,000-mark in attendance. The Raiders also notched the best attendance increase in NCAA Division I from 1995 to 1996 as they climbed 28 spots from No. 56 to 28th overall.

1996 TEAM ACCOMPLISHMENTS

  • Earned second straight NCAA Tournament appearance
  • Made fifth NCAA Tournament appearance in the 1990s
  • Second consecutive season with 20 wins (25-9)
  • Won 25 matches- most for a Texas Tech team since 1990 when the Red Raiders won 30
  • Ranked among the top 25 NCAA Divison I schools in AVCA/USA Today and Volleyball Magazine polls for the majority of the season.
  • First Big XII volleyball team to reach the 20-win plateau. Tech defeated No. 5 ranked Nebraska at home for its 20th win. Since it was the Big XII's inaugural season, Tech will go down in the record books as the first team to ever win 20 games in the Big XII.
  • Drew five 1,000+ home crowds, the most in school history for a season.
  • Recorded largest move on average home attendance list in nation from 1995 to 1996. The Red Raiders climbed 28 spots from No. 56th ranked in NCAA Division I to 28th overall.
  • Shattered previous season's home attendance figures in total attendance and average attendance per game (1996-10,253 fans; 1995-4,489 fans)
  • Only conference team to defeat conference champion Nebraska.
  • Won four tournament titles (Nevada-Taco Bell, New Mexico State Roadrunner, Four-Points/Red Raider Classic and Northwest Times Invitationals)
  • Defeated two nationally ranked opponents (Kansas State/Nebraska)
  • Finished ranked No. 26 nationally by AVCA/USA Today poll.
  • Finished season ranked seventh in Region 5

1996 SCHOOL RECORDS BROKEN

  • Jill Burness- Season Hitting Pct., .336
  • Jill Burness- Career Hitting Pct., .319
  • Jill Burness- Season Kills, 427
  • Lisa Hilgers- Game Assists- 85
  • Cristine Martin- Career Aces- 150
  • Cristine Martin- Season Aces, 55
  • Team- Season Assists Per Game- 14.11
  • Team- Season Block Assists- 479
  • Team- Match Kills- 101
  • Team- Match Assists Per Game- 24.5

TECH IN THE NATIONAL RANKINGS

  • Jill Burness- 20th in Blocks, 1.50
  • Team- 25th in Team Blocks, 3.00

1996 INDIVIDUAL HONORS

Jill Burness
Big XII All-Conference First Team
All-Region 5 Selection
Tournament MVP- Taco Bell Invite, Nevada-Reno Tournament MVP- Roadrunner Classic, New Mexico State Tournament MVP- Four Points Classic, Texas Tech

All-Tournament Selections
Brande Brown, Taco Bell Invite, Nevada-Reno; Lisa Hilgers, Taco Bell Invite, Nevada-Reno; Kristen Holmes, Roadrunner Classic, New Mexico State; Brande Brown, Four Points Classic, Texas Tech; Lisa Hilgers, Four Points Classic, Texas Tech; Jill Burness, NW Arkansas Times Invite, Arkansas; Lacy Nye, NW Arkansas Times Invite, Arkansas

Big XII Player of the Week
Lisa Hilgers, Oct. 20-26, 1996

1996 ACADEMIC AWARDS

Jill Burness
GTE Volleball Academic All-America of the Year (GTE Academic All-America); NCAA 5,000 Post-Graduate Scholarship; NACDA Scholarship; Margaret Wilson Award; Jeannine McHaney Award; Big XII Academic All-Conference

Big XII Academic All-Conference
First Team: Jill Burness, Courtney Thames Second Team: Lisa Hilgers, Kristen Holmes, Cristine Martin 4.0 Grade Point Average: Jill Burness, Courtney Thames, Kim Breitbach

1996 SEASON STATISTICS

Overall Record: 25-9 Home: 10-3 Away: 8-6 Neutral: 7-0

Name                 MP  GP     K    E      TA      Pct.    Ast     SA      SE  RE  Digs    BS  BA  TB      BE  BHE
Breitbach, Kim       31  69     2    0      4       .500    1       3       11  7   46      0   0   0       0   1
Burness, Jill        34  114    427  126    912     .330    16      28      25  12  146     48  123 171     28  3
Brown, Brande        34  113    330  110    743     .296    23      17      33  17  195     25  97  122     25  5
Moric, Sonia         24  36     31   11     72      .278    0       0       2   1   6       3   13  16      6   2
Hilgers, Lisa        34  116    75   22     228     .232    1453    32      34  2   370     6   38  44      25  34
Martin, Cristine     34  112    354  164    1001    .190    35      55      65  42  319     20  57  77      11  5
Nye, Lacy            34  111    322  162    843     .190    44      25      47  28  270     6   79  85      6   6
Putnam, Courtney     21  46     56   27     191     .152    1       0       2   1   36      1   7   8       2   0
Holmes, Kristen      34  103    153  88     449     .145    102     8       53  12  203     13  45  58      11  5
Cooper, Angela       28  65     99   63     265     .136    8       8       9   0   45      2   16  18      2   2
Fife-Berres, Heather 16  20     7    6      18      .056    3       1       4   3   21      0   3   3       1   0
Thames, Courtney     34  114    6    9      49      -.061   21      18      25  17  229     0   1   1       1   1
Texas Tech           34  121    1862 788    4775    .225    1707    195     310 142 1886    124 479 363.5   114 64
Opponents            34  121    1680 869    4756    .171    1482    139     307 193 1701    53  490 298     108 90

MATCHES STARTED: Hilgers and Martin 34 each; Thames, 32; Burness 30; Brown 26; Holmes 23; Nye 22; Cooper 2; Moric 1.

1996 BIG XII CONFERENCE STATISTICS

Conference Record: 12-8 Home: 7-3 Away: 5-5

Name                MP  GP  K     E     TA      Pct.    Ast     SA  SE  RE  Digs    BS  BA  TB      BE  BHE
Breitbach, Kim      20  46  1     0     3       .333    0       3   1   0   4       25  0   0       0   0
Burness, Jill       20  72  253   79    562     .310    11      13  15  7   91      21  70  91      17  3
Brown, Brande       20  72  224   86    532     .259    16      8   16  14  141     16  64  80      12  2
Fife-Berres, Heather 8  10  1     0     4       .250    1       0   2   1   11      0   1   1       0   0
Hilgers, Lisa       20  73  55    17    161     .236    944     17  27  2   235     6   22  28      14  21
Martin, Cristine    20  70  248   110   707     .195    26      27  46  27  215     12  23  35      8   4
Moric, Sonia        13  21  10    4     32      .188    0       0   1   1   1       1   5   6       3   1
Nye, Lacy           20  72  211   122   588     .151    26      20  37  21  181     2   47  49      1   4
Putnam, Courtney    18  38  48    26    168     .131    1       0   1   1   33      1   7   8       2   0
Cooper, Angela      15  26  44    30    121     .116    3       3   6   0   26      1   8   9       1   0
Holmes, Kristen     20  65  87    61    273     .095    41      4   26  7   123     6   21  27      7   4
Thames, Courtney    20  70  3     7     33      -.121   17      7   11  12  143     0   1   0       1   0
Texas Tech          20  75  1185  542   3184    .202    1086    102 198 97  1225    66  281 206.5   65  40
Opponents           20  75  1186  543   3170    .203    1085    95  199 102 1151    33  334 200     49  52

MATCHES STARTED: Hilgers 20; Thames 19; Martin 18; Holmes and Nye 17 each; Burness 14; Brown 13; Cooper and Moric, 1 each.

1996 MISCELLENEOUS STATISTICS

1996 TEXAS TECH PLAYER OF THE WEEK

Period Player (Statistics)
Aug. 25-31      Jill Burness (45-10-91, .385, 11 digs, 22 blocks)
Sept. 1-7       Jill Burness (48-15-98, .337, 11 digs, 13 blocks)
Sept. 8-14      Jill Burness (28-7-54, .389, 18 blocks)
Sept. 15-21     Lacy Nye (45-13-86, .372, 28 digs, 11 blocks)
Sept. 22-29     Brande Brown (17-3-27, .519)
Sept. 30-Oct. 5 Cristine Martin (22-8-54, .259, 11 digs) 
Oct. 6-12       Lisa Hilgers (2-0-17, .118, 95 assists, 29 digs)
Oct. 13-19      Brande Brown (26-3-44, .523, 9 digs)
Oct. 20-26      Lisa Hilgers (10-2-19, .421, 121 assists, 34 digs)
Oct. 27-Nov. 2  Jill Burness (28-8-64, .313, 13 blocks) 
Nov. 3-9        Cristine Martin (33-15-106, .170, 23 digs)
Nov. 10-16      Lisa Hilgers (5-1-13, .308, 88 assists, 23 digs)
Nov. 17-23      Jill Burness (36-9-62, .435, 11 blocks)
Nov. 24-30      Brande Brown (32-11-68, .309, 25 blocks)
Dec. 1-7        Lacy Nye (10-5-22, .227, 5 digs)

1996 INDIVIDUAL HIGHS

No. Name                K   E   Att. Pct.   A   SA  SE  Dig BS  BA  BL
2   Courtney Putnam     11  4   31  .625    0   0   0   6   0   4   1
3   Courtney Thames     1   1   3   .500    3   3   4   16  0   1   1
4   Lisa Hilgers        8   3   16  .714    85  4   3   21  2   4   4
5   Kristen Holmes      17  7   30  .700    7   2   5   14  3   5   5
6   Heather Fife-Berres 3   2   4   1.000   2   1   1   4   0   1   1
7   Brande Brown        21  10  47  .667    3   4   3   15  4   6   8
8   Kim Breitbach       1   0   1   1.000   1   3   2   6   0   0   0
9   Cristine Martin     22  12  54  .538    5   5   7   22  2   4   6
10  Lacy Nye            23  10  50  .571    8   2   3   18  2   6   6
13  Sonia Moric         5   2   8   .667    0   0   0   2   1   3   3
14  Angela Cooper       12  7   24  .800    2   2   2   8   1   2   2
16  Jill Burness        26  8   55  .667    3   3   3   12  4   8   9
Totals may have been duplicated during the season. 

1996 TEAM HIGHS AND LOWS

Kills
Most: *101 vs. Baylor 11-28
Fewest: 33 at Texas A&M 10-6
Opponent-Most: 97 by Baylor 11-28
Fewest: 19 by New Mexico State 9-6-96.

Errors
Most: 43 vs. Kansas State 11-1
Fewest: 7 vs. New Mexico State 9-6
Opponent-Most: 43 by Kansas 10-11
Fewest: 12 by Washington 12-4.

Attacks
Most: 228 vs. Colorado 10-25
Fewest: 70 at New Mexico State 9-6
Opponent-Most: 234 by Nebraska 10-26
Fewest: 64 by SMU 8-30.

Hitting Percentage
Highest: .507 (45-8-73) vs. SMU 8-30
Lowest: .065 (35-38-107) vs. Washington
Opponent-Best: .365 (76-19-156) by Nebraska
Lowest: -.030 (22-25-101) by Oklahoma 11-30.

Assists
Most: *98 vs. Baylor 11-27
Fewest: 28 vs. New Mexico State 9-6
Opponent-Most: 87 by Baylor 11-28
Fewest: 13 by SMU 8-30.

Digs
Most: 102 vs. Nebraska 10-26
Fewest: 17 vs. SMU 8-30
Opponent-Most: 87 by Baylor 11-28
Fewest: 13 by SMU 8-30.

Solo Blocks
Most: 11 vs. UNLV 9-13
Fewest: 0 at Baylor 11-28 and at Washington 12-4
Opponent-Most: 6 by Texas 10-4 and Nebraska 11-23
Fewest: 0 by 10 opponents.

Assist Blocks
Most: 30 vs. Texas A&M 11-8
Fewest: 4 vs. Wichita State and vs. Missouri 9-27
Opponent-Most: 32 by Kansas State 11-1
Fewest: 4 by SMU 8-30.

Total Blocks
Most: 20 vs. Texas A&M 11-8
Fewest: vs. Texas A&M 10-6 and vs. Washington 12-4
Opponents-Most: 17 vs. Stephen F. Austin
Fewest: 2 vs. three opponents.

1996 SEASON TOTALS

Tech Totals
G       K       E       Att.    Pct.
1       525     184     1231    .277
2       544     252     1386    .211
3       547     240     1420    .216
4       201     92      546     .200
5       43      22      145     .145
Tot.    1862    788     4775    .225
Opponent Totals
G       K       E       Att.    Pct.
1       451     236     1364    .157
2       471     265     1388    .148
3       508     273     1409    .167
4       205     86      546     .218
5       43      19      142     .169
Tot.    1680    869     4756    .171

1996 BIG XII CONFERENCE TOTALS

Tech Totals
G       K       E       Att.    Pct.
1       313     142     810     .211
2       333     168     896     .184
3       336     136     881     .227
4       159     67      425     .216
5       35      20      131     .115
Tot.    1186    542     3184    .202
Opponent Totals
G       K       E       Att.    Pct.
1       318     150     846     .199
2       340     155     893     .207
3       328     162     860     .193
4       168     68      438     .228
5       39      14      133     .203
Tot.    1186    543     3170    .203

BIG XII CONFERENCE STATISTICS

1996 Final Team Standings

Pl. School          Conf    Pct.    Overall     Pct.
1.  *Nebraska       19-1    .950    30-4        .882
2.  *Texas          16-4    .800    23-7        .766
3.  *Texas A&M      15-5    .750    25-8        .757
4.  *Kansas State   13-7    .650    26-9        .743
    *Colorado       13-7    .650    19-10       .655
6.  *Texas Tech     12-8    .600    25-9        .735
7.  Oklahoma        8-12    .400    17-15       .531
8.  Baylor          7-13    .350    18-16       .529
9.  Kansas          4-16    .200    10-24       .294
10. Iowa State      3-17    .050    7-25        .219
11. Missouri        0-20    .000    0-28        .000
*NCAA Tournament Teams

1996 Big XII Conference Awards
Player of the Year: Lisa Reitsma, Nebraska
Newcomer of the Year: Megan Korver, Nebraska
Freshman of the Year: Sarah Butler, Texas
Coach of the Year: Terry Pettit, Nebraska
All-Conference Team: Fiono Nepo, Nebraska; Lisa Reitsma, Nebraska; Demetria Sance, Texas; Kristie Smedsrud, Texas A&M; Sonya Barnes, Texas; Jill Burness, Texas Tech; Kelly Campbell, Colorado; Kate Crnich, Nebraska; Kate DeClerk, Kansas State; Megan Korver, Nebraska; Rachel Wacholder, Colorado; Page White, Texas A&M; Jane Winkel, Texas.
All-Academic Team: Jill Burness; Courtney Thames, Texas Tech
TTU Honorable Mention: Lisa Hilgers, Kristen Holmes, Cristine Martin

Texas Tech in the Big XII Conference
(1996 Season Individual Statistics)

Kills
1.  Lisa Reitsma, NU, 1996          611
2.  Kristie Smedsrud, A&M, 1996     558
3.  Sonya Van Helden, ISU, 1996     505
4.  Melissa Peterson, OU, 1996      495
5.  Patrice Arrington, OU, 1996     464
10. Jill Burness, TTU, 1996         427
Kills Per Game
1.  Lisa Reitsma, NU, 1996          5.05
2.  Kristie Smedsrud, A&M, 1996     4.94
3.  Melissa Peterson, OU, 1996      4.50
4.  Sarah Lodge, CU, 1996           4.43
    Sonya Van Helden, ISU, 1996     4.43
    Rachel Wacholder, CU, 1996      4.43
10. Jill Burness, TTU, 1996         3.75
Hitting Percentage
1.  Kate DeClerk, KSU, 1996         .365
2.  Sunny Spoonland, OU, 1996       .340
3.  Jill Burness, TTU, 1996         .330
4.  Tonia Tauke, NU, 1996           .326
5.  Page White, A&M, 1996           .315
9.  Brande Brown, TTU, 1996         .296
Attacks
1.  Lisa Reitsma, NU, 1996          1,468
2.  Sonya Van Helden, ISU, 1996     1,433
3.  Melissa Peterson, OU, 1996      1,265
4.  Kristie Smedsrud, A&M, 1996     1,258
5.  Patrice Arrington, OU, 1996     1,192
Attacks Per Game
1.  Sonya Van Helden, ISU, 1996     12.57
2.  Lisa Reitsma, NU, 1996          12.13
3.  Melissa Peterson, OU, 1996      11.50
4.  Rachel Wacholder, CU, 1996      11.47
5.  Kristie Smedsrud, A&M, 1996     11.13
Service Aces
1.  Cristine Martin, TTU, 1996      55
2.  Devon Ryning, KSU, 1996         47
3.  Abbie Brown, KSU, 1996          41
4.  Farah Mensik, A&M, 1996         39
    Melissa Peterson, OU, 1996      39
Service Aces Per Game
1.  Cristine Martin, TTU, 1996      .49
2.  Devon Ryning, KSU, 1996         .41
3.  Jodi Maune, MU, 1996            .38
4.  Jen Lansink, ISU, 1996          .36
    Robin Wieskus, OU, 1996         .36
Solo Blocks
1.  Jill Burness, TTU, 1996         48
2.  Sarah Butler, UT, 1996          34
3.  Megan Korver, NU, 1996          30
4.  Demetria Sance, UT, 1996        27
5.  Tonia Tauke, NU, 1996           26
Blocking Assists
1.  Megan Korver, NU, 1996          155
2.  Val Wieck, KSU, 1996            141
3.  Tonia Tauke, NU, 1996           127
4.  Cindy VanderWoude, A&M, 1996    127
    Cindy Lothspeich, A&M, 1996     127
6.  Jill Burness, TTU, 1996         123
Total Blocks
1.  Megan Korver, NU, 1996          185
2.  Jill Burness, TTU, 1996         171
3.  Val Wieck, KSU, 1996            164
4.  Tonia Tauke, NU, 1996           153
5.  Cindy VanderWoude, A&M, 1996    149
Blocks Per Game
1.  Megan Korver, NU, 1996          1.53
2.  Jill Burness, TTU, 1996         1.50
3.  Cindy VanderWoude, A&M, 1996    1.39
4.  Valerie Wieck, KSU, 1996        1.37
5.  Tonia Tauke, NU, 1996           1.33
Digs
1.  Stacy Sykora, A&M, 1996         441
2.  Kate Crnich, NU, 1996           390
3.  Jaime Krondak, NU, 1996         387
4.  Kim Zschau, KSU, 1996           386
5.  Demetria Sance, UT, 1996        371
6.  Lisa Hilgers, TTU, 1996         370
Digs Per Game
1.  Stacy Sykora, A&M, 1996         4.01
2.  Demetria Sance, UT, 1996        3.57
3.  Melissa Peterson, OU, 1996      3.35
4.  Kate Crnich, NU, 1996           3.31
5.  Jaime Krondak, NU, 1996         3.25
8.  Lisa Hilgers, TTU, 1996         3.19
Set Assists
1.  Fiona Nepo, NU, 1996            1,653
2.  Kelly Campbell, CU, 1996        1,519
3.  Farah Mensik, A&M, 1996         1,511
4.  Devon Ryning, KSU, 1996         1,498
5.  Lisa Hilgers, TTU, 1996         1,453
Assists Per Game
1.  Kelly Campbell, CU, 1996        14.75
2.  Fiona Nepo, NU, 1996            13.66
3.  Farah Mensik, A&M, 1996         13.37
4.  Devon Ryning, KSU, 1996         13.03
5.  Lisa Hilgers, TTU, 1996         12.53

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