Aug. 30, 2000

Columbus, Ohio – %^$Ohio State begins the 2000 season at the Temple Volleyball Classic this weekend. The Buckeyes will face Colgate Friday (4 p.m.) and play Seton Hall (10 a.m.) and Temple at (5:30 p.m.) Saturday, OSU will then play at Marshall the following Tuesday at 7 p.m. That match will be one of seven cablecasts by the Ohio News Network.%^$


%^$Ohio State returns four starters from the 17-12 squad last year. They include setter Katie Virtue (So., St. Charles, Ill./St. Francis), the Big Ten Freshman of the Year and an Asics Freshman All-America, middle blockers Suzie Stiling (So., Glenview, Ill./Glenbrook South) a Big Ten All-Freshman Team selection and Dana Stearns (Sr., Bexley, Ohio/Bexley) and outside hitter Shelly Draeger (So., Milwaukee, Wis./Wisconsin Lutheran).%^$

%^$Other returning letterwinners include middle blockers Erin Baker (Jr., Elmhurst, Ill./York) and Sue Calligaris (So., Palermo, Italy/Liceo Linguistico), outside hitters Anne Botica (Jr., Windsor, Ont./St. Joseph) and Angelee Abbring (Sr., Wheatfield, Ind./Kankakee Valley), and defensive specialist Nikki Cisco (Jr., Dublin, Ohio/Dublin Coffman).%^$

%^$Newcomers to the team include setter Heather Whalen (Fr., Kalamazoo, Mich./Parchment) and outside hitter Erin Treadway (Fr., Dayton, Ohio/Chaminade-Julienne).%^$


%^$The Buckeyes are 21-8 in season-opening matches. In the 18-year tenure of head coach Jim Stone, OSU has won 15 opening matches. Stone is 6-3 in road openers, 7-0 in home openers and 2-0 in neutral site matches. Last season Ohio State opened at Dayton with a 3-0 victory (15-9, 15-3, 15-4). The Buckeyes have won 12 of the last 13 opening matches.%^$


%^$The Buckeyes are scheduled for seven matches on the Ohio News Network. The matches are part of a 30 plus event package between Ohio State and ONN. The following matches comprise the volleyball package (broadcast times subject to change): at Marshall, Sept. 5 (replay on Sept. 6, 11:30 p.m.), Toledo Sept. 9 (live), OSU’s match Sept. 10 (live), Cincinnati Sept. 12 (Sept. 12, 11:30 p.m.), Michigan Sept. 24 (live), Illinois Oct. 7 (Oct. 8, 1 p.m.), and Wisconsin Nov. 5 (Nov. 5, 11 p.m.).%^$


%^$The Red Raiders finished the 1999 season with a 17-18 overall record and tied for first place in the Patriot League with a 9-3 mark. This will be the first meeting with Ohio State.%^$


%^$The Pirates were 15-15 last season and finished 10th (3-8) in the Big East. Ohio State won the only meeting with Seton Hall in 1997. The 15-3, 15-10, 15-1 win was played in Columbus.%^$


%^$The Owls were 25-6 in 1999 and finished atop the Atlantic 10 Conference standings with a 16-2 mark. The Buckeyes won the lone meeting with the Owls in 1998. OSU won 15-7, 15-7, 15-9 in Columbus.%^$


%^$The Thundering Herd had a 15-15 record last season. They finished fifth in the Mid-American Conference with a 9-9 mark. OSU leads the series with Marshall 2-0. The last meeting was in 1998. OSU won 15-1, 15-3, 15-1.%^$


%^$Jim Stone is in his 19th year at Ohio State. He has a 398-181 (.687) record with the Buckeyes and is 228-99 (.697) in Big Ten play. His squads have won Big Ten championships in 1989, 1991 and 1994 and in the last 11 years has only finished below third twice. In the championship years, he was named the Big Ten Coach of the Year and in 1991 was the Volleyball Monthly Coach of the Year. For the last 11 years, OSU has participated in the NCAA Championships, advancing to the national semifinals in 1991 and 1994. Stone’s coaching career record includes three years at Wyoming (1979-1981). His 21-year career record is 448-223 (.668).%^$


%^$Head coach Jim Stone begins his 19th-year in the Big Ten at Ohio State. Closest to Stone is Mike Hebert of Minnesota who is entering his 18th season. He spent 14 years at Illinois and the last four at Minnesota.%^$


%^$After a Tuesday match at Marshall, Ohio State returns home for three matches in four days. OSU hosts the Buckeye Invitational Saturday and Sunday and plays Cincinnati Tuesday. All three matches are slated to be carried by ONN. The weekend matches are currently listed as being cablecast live.