Thursday, November 20, 2003
WHAT: Mid-Continent Conference Tournament.

WHEN: Friday-Saturday, November 21-22, 2003.

WHERE: ARC (5,000), Valparaiso, Ind.

SEMIFINALS: #1 Valpo (25-7, 13-1 Mid-Con) vs. #4 UMKC (8-24, 6-8), 7:30 p.m. CST, #2 Oral Roberts (20-12, 12-2) vs. #3 IUPUI (16-14, 9-5), 5 p.m. CST.

CHAMPIONSHIP: Semifinal winners meet for the Championship on Nov. 22 at 7 p.m. CST.

RADIO: WVUR (95.1-FM), Valparaiso, Ind. JR Radcliffe will handle the play-by-play, while Ken LaVicka will provide color commentary. Friday's match will be joined in progress following the men's basketball game. Saturday's match will be tape-delayed.

THE COACHES: Valparaiso is led by Carin Avery, who is in her 4th season of coaching, and 2nd with the Crusaders. She is 100-41 overall, and 45-17 at Valpo. UMKC is led by Steve Dallman, who is 107-181 in his eighth season overall and 75-113 in his 6th season with the Kangaroos. Oral Roberts is led by Sheera Sirola who is 20-12 overall and with the Golden Eagles in her 1st season. IUPUI is led by Steve Payne who is 96-123 in his 7th season overall and with the Jaguars.

SERIES RECORD WITH UMKC: Valparaiso leads the overall series 14-8 with the Kangaroos and has won the last three meetings between the schools. The Crusaders downed UMKC in three games (30-25, 30-27, 30-26) at the ARC on October 3, and won in five games (30-28, 29-31, 30-21, 29-31, 15-9) in Kansas City on November 1.

SERIES RECORD WITH ORAL ROBERTS: Oral Roberts leads the overall series with Valpo 11-4, but the Crusaders have won the three meetings between the schools. The Crusaders downed the Golden Eagles in three games (30-23, 30-27, 30-27) on September 27 in Tulsa, Okla. and in five games (22-30, 30-23, 29-31, 30-16, 15-11) at the ARC on October 24.

SERIES RECORD WITH IUPUI: IUPUI leads the all-time series. The Crusaders won in Indianapolis on October 11 in five games (19-30, 30-26, 30-24, 23-30, 15-13), but the Jaguars took the rematch at the ARC in five games (17-30, 30-26, 30-27, 20-30, 15-10) on November 7.

Valparaiso will play host to the 2003 Mid-Continent Conference volleyball championships this weekend for the first time since the Crusaders hosted the event in 1996.

NORMAN EARNS ACADEMIC ALL-DISTRICT HONOR: Cyndi Norman was named to the 2003 CoSIDA Academic All-District V Second Team. A biology and psychology major, she has also led the Crusaders as a setter over the past four seasons. She ranks second in Valpo history with 4,776 assists, and is third in Mid-Continent Conference history. She needs 215 assists to become Valpo's all-time assist leader.

MIKOS LEADS NATION IN BLOCKS: Valpo sophomore Liz Mikos currently leads the nation in blocks per game with 1.80. She has also set a new single season school records with 180 total blocks, and 44 solo blocks on the year.

PLAYERS OF THE WEEK: Valpo has had its share of Mid-Continent Conference Players of the Week this year. On the offensive side, Cyndi Norman (Sept. 8 and Oct. 13) earned the honor twice, while Lauren Moulton (Nov. 10) also picked up the accolade. Defensively, Sara Silcox (Sept. 15 and Nov. 3) earned the honor a pair of times as did Liz Mikos (Sept. 2 and Nov. 10). Heather Hynds (Oct. 6) also earned the award once.

AVERY EARNS 100th WIN: Head coach Carin Avery recorded her 100th career coaching victory last Saturday in Valpo's three-game win over Oakland. Her career record now stands at 100-41 in four seasons overall and 45-17 in two years with the Brown and Gold.

SILCOX CLOSING IN ON DIG RECORD: Sara Silcox needs just 28 digs to set a new school single season record for digs. She enters the tournament with 502 on the season, and is chasing Karen Kulick's 1991 mark of 529. Silcox also ranks 18th in the nation with 4.65 digs per game this year.