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Long Beach State in Utah for Wolverine Invitational

Complete LBSU Game Notes Get Acrobat Reader

Thursday, Aug. 31
Long Beach State vs. Montana
Time: 4 p.m. PT
Location: Orem, Utah
Live Stats | Listen | FloVolleyball Stream

Friday, Sept. 1
Long Beach State vs. No. 9 Kansas
Time: 1 p.m. PT
Location: Orem, Utah
Live Stats | Listen | FloVolleyball Stream

Saturday, Sept. 2
Long Beach State at Utah Valley
Time: 11 a.m. PT
Location: Orem, Utah
Live Stats | Listen | WAC Digital Network Stream

• Long Beach State opened the 2017 season at the LBSU Baden Challenge, dropping a pair of matches to now No. 1-ranked Stanford and Iowa, sandwiched around a sweep victory over Wright State.
• Junior Megan Kruidhof led the Beach in kills in all three matches, posting seven against Stanford, 12 against Wright State and a career-high 14 against Iowa. She also collected her fourth career double-double in the victory over Wright State by adding a team-high 14 digs.
• Senior setter Alexis Patterson filled the stat sheet in that match, dishing out 31 assists while posting eight digs and seven kills on a .538 attack percentage.
• Patterson is one of seven players to make her Long Beach State debut over the weekend, joining Emma Kirst, Monika Simkova, Brooke Earkman, Fayth Rascon-Ryn, Radi Marinova, and Mary Jo McBride.

• The Beach starts off the weekend against the Grizzlies of Montana, who are also under a first-year head coach in Allison Lawrence. Montana played in the North Texas Invitational last weekend, scoring a four-set win over UTEP and a five-set win over Tulsa before losing to the hosts, North Texas, in a sweep. Redshirt junior MB Mykaela Hammer leads the way so far with 3.25 kills/set and a .281 hitting percentage. She also has a team-leading 1.25 blocks/set.
• Long Beach State is 4-1 in the all-time series with Montana, with the last meeting coming Dec. 12, 1994.
• Next up will be another nationally ranked opponent as LBSU takes on No. 9 Kansas. The Jayhawks were at the Wolfpack Invitational in Raleigh, NC last weekend, earning two wins over host NC State plus a 3-1 win over Missouri State. As a team, KU averaged 3.0 blocks/set, plus an impressive 17.23 digs. Senior pin hitters Kelsie Payne (4.54 kills/set, .343 hitting) and Madison Rigdon (3.92 kills/set, 2.38 digs/set) are the top weapons for Kansas so far this season.
• The Beach has only played Kansas once, in the 2003 NCAA Tournament. The Jayhawks were three-set winners on Dec. 4 of that year.
• The final opponent of the weekend will be the hosts, Utah Valley. The Wolverines started the year 0-3 before a 3-0 road win over Southern Utah on Tuesday night. UVU was in the Bay Area to open the season, picking up three four-set defeats against Pepperdine, Fresno State and Nevada in the SJSU/USF Invitational.
• This will be the first ever meeting between Long Beach State and Utah Valley.

• For the first time in over three decades, there is a new head coach of the Long Beach State women's volleyball program. Former LBSU setter Joy McKienzie-Fuerbringer has returned to the Beach as head coach, and is joined by her husband, associate head coach Matt Fuerbringer on the new coaching staff.
• McKienzie-Fuerbringer won a national championship with Long Beach State in 1993, then returned as an assistant coach following an overseas playing career. She has previous assistant coaching experience at UCLA, where she helped the Bruins to a national championship in 2011.
• Fuerbringer was a terrific player at Stanford, where he was a four-time All-American and the career kills leader for the Cardinal. He went on to a professional career indoors and on the beach before spending the last four years coaching with the US Men's National Team. Included in that stretch was a bronze medal at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio.
• Also new to the Beach is volunteer assistant coach Justine Wong-Orantes, who just completed a stellar career at Nebraska. Wong-Orantes was a two-time AVCA All-American libero for the Cornhuskers, starting all four years and winning a national championship in 2015.
Mike Campbell remains on the coaching staff for his fourth season as assistant coach while remaining the head coach of LBSU's beach volleyball squad.

• There are 10 new players on the Long Beach State roster this season, including a handful of transfers and a crop of local and international freshman talent.
• Senior setter Alexis Patterson comes to Long Beach from UNLV and she will be an immediate contributor in charge of the LBSU attack. Utah transfer Emma Kirst is a redshirt junior who, at 6-foot-4, brings great size to either side of the net. Sophomore Kristyna Adamcikova transfers in from San Francisco and could be headed for a redshirt season as she recovers from injury. JUCO transfer Mary Jo McBride adds depth to the setting ranks after coming over from nearby Long Beach City College, where she played for LBSU great Misty May-Treanor. San Diego transfer Gigi Alex joins the indoor roster after playing beach volleyball at Long Beach State last season.
• Among the incoming freshmen, outside hitter Monika Simkova projects to see the most playing time. Hailing from Slovakia, she is one of three incoming freshman from Europe, along with setter Mina Andjelkovic (Serbia) and middle blocker Radi Marinova (Bulgaria).
• The other two incoming freshmen are local products: outside hitter Gina Lipscomb from Yorba Linda and defensive specialist Fayth Rascon-Ryn from Redondo Beach.

• The Big West Preseason Coaches Poll had Long Beach State slated for a third-place finish in 2017, behind defending champion Hawai'i and Cal Poly.
• Each of the top three teams in the poll received a first-place vote, with Hawai'i leading the way with six, followed by two for Cal Poly and one for LBSU.

• All of Long Beach State's non-televised home matches will be streamed live online and free of charge on BigWest.TV.
• Every LBSU match, home and away, can be heard live on KBeach Radio. Listen in at or via the free KBeach Radio app.



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