Following home losses to the top-ranked Baylor Bears and the Texas Tech Red Raiders last week, Iowa State volleyball plays its third home game in a row on Wednesday — this one coming against the TCU Horned Frogs.
These two teams split the season series last year. Iowa State swept TCU in Ames, Iowa, 3-0 and TCU won against Iowa State 3-1 in Fort Worth, Texas.
The Horned Frogs have struggled to find a rhythm and a consistent starting lineup this season, as 13 out of their 16 players have made a start.
However, Iowa State head coach Christy Johnson-Lynch believes TCU has found a consistent starting lineup.
“They’re starting to play better and it seems like they settled on a lineup for them,” Johnson-Lynch said.
The Horned Frogs have struggled this season, only holding a 6-9 (1-4 Big 12) record — putting them in a three-way tie for seventh place in the conference. The Horned Frogs do have a win over Texas Tech, who beat Iowa State on Saturday.
Statistically, TCU has struggled this season. On the attack, TCU has a hitting percentage of .189, which is eighth out of the nine teams in the Big 12. Defensively, TCU is the worst in the league, as the Horned Frogs allowed their opponents to hit .237 against them on average.
What TCU does well is not allowing its opponents to get a lot of kills and digs per set. TCU has been holding its opponents to 12.21 kills per set, which is third in the conference, and 12.79 digs per set, which is second in the conference.
Iowa State struggled hitting the ball last week, only hitting .155 in seven sets. Despite this, the team felt good about its offense at Monday’s practice.
“We’ve been passing well [this season], but we dipped a little bit, but we got back into a groove today,” said freshman outside hitter Annie Hatch.
In conference play, Iowa State has a hitting percentage of .218, but the Cyclones also have a season hitting percentage of .256, which is third in the conference. Iowa State has a middle of the pack defense in the Big 12 with a .212 opponent hitting percentage, which is fifth in the conference.
The Cyclones currently sit at 11-6 (2-3 Big 12) in fifth place in the Big 12.
The Cyclones have controlled the series since the Horned Frogs joined the Big 12 in 2012, winning 11 out of the 14 matches. Wednesday’s match starts at 6:30 p.m. in Hilton Coliseum.
“We’ve got to control the things that we can control, such as our energy, our talk and play consistent,” said sophomore right-side player Eleanor Holthaus.