DU Opens Home Schedule with Pioneer Classic

Aug. 31, 2017

 Game 1: UC Davis (3-0, 0-0 Big West) vs. Denver (3-0, 0-0 Summit), Game 2: Niagara (0-3, 0-0 MAAC) vs. Denver (3-0, 0-0 Summit), Game 3: Eastern Illinois (2-1, 0-0 OVC) vs. Denver (3-0, 0-0 Summit)
 Date & Time  Friday, Sept. 1 at 6 p.m. MT/ Saturday, Sept. 2 at 11:30 a.m. and 6 p.m. MT
 Location  Hamilton Gymnasium
 Tickets  Denver Box Office
 Pioneer Movement  Donate Today
 Live Stats vs. UC Davis  Gametracker
 Live Stats vs. Niagara  Gametracker
 Live Stats vs. Eastern Illinois  Gametracker
 Game Info  Denver Game Notes (.pdf)   |   Denver Media Guide (.pdf)   |    UC Davis   |   Niagara   |   Eastern Illinois   |  Summit League
 Facebook  /DenverPioneers   |   /Denver Women's Volleyball
 Twitter  @DU_Pioneers   |   @DU_Volleyball   |    #DUGameDay, #DU1NATION


HAMPTON INN AND SUITES CLASSIC
• The Pioneers competed in the Hampton Inn and Suites Classic in Charleston, S.C., going a perfect 3-0 on the weekend.
• Denver defeated Tennessee State in three sets, USC Upstate in four sets, and host College of Charleston in four sets to claim the championship.

THE COMEBACK KIDS
• Facing set point at 24-22 in the second set against the College of Charleston, the Pioneers rallied to score the next four points to win the set 26-24, behind kills from Kayla Principato, Becca Latham and Teal Schnurr.
• In the third set against Charleston, DU was down 23-20 before they stringed together five-straight points to close out the set 25-23. Tina Boe, Latham (2) and Schnurr led the charge with kills down the stretch. KILLING IT
• DU has three players with over 20 kills, with Principato leading the team with 42 through three matches. Latham is second on the team at 35, and Cassie Baird sits at 22.
• Denver had four players with 10-plus kills against USC Upstate with Latham (14), Principato (12), Lydia Bartalo (10) and Schnurr (10).
• Latham had a career-high 15 kills against College of Charleston.
• The Pioneers have 154 kills to date with a hitting percentage of .280.

WE'LL HAVE THE DOUBLE-DOUBLE PLEASE
• The Pioneers had four double-doubles in the opening-weekend, with Piyusha Boteju recording two.
• Boteju had 29 assists and 10 digs against USC Upstate, and then had 28 assists and 11 digs later in the day against the College of Charleston. She now has 14 double-doubles in her career.
• Baird had 10 kills and 10 digs against Charleston, the fourth of her career. Bartalo had 10 kills and 12 digs in her second match as a Pioneer against USC Upstate.

BLOCK IT UP
• In the second set against the College of Charleston, the Pioneers teamed up to score three points in a row on blocks. Latham and Willis assisted on two blocks, while Willis and Bartalo teamed up on the other.
• DU has 26 total blocks through three games (2.4 blocks/ set), with Willis leading the team with 12 total blocks. THE HONOR IS ALL OURS
•Principato was named Summit League Offensive Player of the Week on Aug. 28 for her performance in Charleston.

FEARLESS FRESHMEN
• In their first action as DU Pioneers, the freshmen have made an immediate impact.
Ellie Anderson leads the team with four service aces.
• Bartalo is sceond on the team in digs with 34, Boe is second on the team in total blocks at 11 (one solo, 10 assisted), and Anderson is second on the team in assists (38).

LEAD THE WAY
• Along with Anderson (service aces), Principato (kills) and Willis (total blocks), Boteju leads the team in assists (74), Cassidy Rooke leads the team in digs (46), and Principato in points scored (45).

HOME OPENERS
• DU is 13-6 in home openers as a Division I school and 19-14 overall.
• Last season, Denver defeated No. 20 Loyola Marymount 3-1 in its home opener.
• The Pioneers have won its last six home openers.

PRESEASON POLL
• The Pioneers were picked as the Summit League favorites in the preseason poll.
• DU received the top spot for the fourth year in a row.
• They received five out of the eight first-place votes, earning 47 total points.

SUSTAINED SUCCESS
• Denver enters the season coming off of its third-straight Summit League regular season and tournament championships.
• DU has made the NCAA Tournament the last three years after winning the Summit League Tournament.

CONSISTENCY IS KEY
• The Pioneers won over 20 matches and 13 league matches each of the last three seasons.
• The Pioneers have earned the regular season title with a 13-3 Summit League record the past three seasons.

PLAYERS TO WATCH
• Junior outside hitter Becca Latham was named as "Players to Watch" in the Summit League Preseason Poll.
• Latham appeared in all 116 sets for Denver in 2016, tallying 210 kills at a mark of 1.81 per set and a hitting percentage of .206.
• Last season, Latham had career highs in kills (11, vs. North Dakota State), attacks (31, vs. North Dakota State), hitting percentage (.400, at IUPUI), assists (1, three times), blocks (6, vs. Utah State), and both solo (1, four times) and assisted blocks (5, vs. Utah State).

RELOAD, NOT REBUILD
• Denver has 10 returners from last year, including senior rightside hitter Kayla Principato who was named to the All-Summit League team last year, and for the second time in her career. Principato led the team in kills (349) and points (417).
• The Pioneers also return 2016 Summit League block leader Emma Willis, who recorded 131 total blocks (125 assisted, 6 solo). DU ranked No. 1 in total blocks last year in the Summit League with 282.5 total blocks.
Cassidy Rooke returns as the team's libero, where she led in digs (485) and aces (37) last season.
• The Pioneers will have eight new faces on the roster this season, with six incoming freshmen and two transfers.
• With the graduation of five seniors, including two-time Summit League Tournament MVP Ruth Okoye, DU will rely on the leadership and experience of their upperclassmen

NEW FACES
• As mentioned, the Crimson and Gold welcomed eight new faces this past offseason.
• Transfers Becca Mau (Sr., OH, Longmont, Colo./ Idaho) and Teal Schnurr (Sr., MB/ RSH, Westminster, Colo./ Marquette) are coming home to finish their collegiate volleyball careers.
• Joining the 2017 squad are Ellie Anderson (S, 5-8, Cedar Rapids, Iowa/ Linn-Mar HS), Lydia Bartalo (OH, 5-10, Colorado Springs, Colo./ Lewis-Palmer HS), Tina Boe (MB, 6-0, Plymouth, Minn. /Osseo HS), Macy Carrabine (L/DS, 5-11, Bargersville, Ind. / Center Grove HS), Lauren McManus (L/DS, 5-9, Waterloo, Iowa / Columbus Catholic HS) and Jaden Sandoval (RS/ OH, 6-7, Denver, Colo. / Thomas Jefferson HS).

FAMILIAR SPACES
• Denver owns a 61-10 home record in the Hamilton Gymnasium over the past five seasons, including a perfect 18-0 in 2015.
• Last season, the Pioneers protected home court with a 14-1 record, losing only to Utah State in a non-conference contest.
• Hamilton Gymnasium has hosted the Summit League Tournament the last two years and will host the 2017 Summit League Championships Nov. 17-19.