Thursday's match at DePaul will be followed by a trip to Long Beach State on Oct. 21.

Notre Dame Heads To DePaul

Oct. 15, 2008

NOTRE DAME, Ind. – Notre Dame volleyball head coach Debbie Brown and her crew will bus to Chicago on Thursday to face DePaul at 7:30 p.m. (CT). The Irish (9-9 overall, 4-2 BIG EAST) are coming off a 3-1 home loss to Pittsburgh last Sunday but have but have not dropped a match to the Blue Demons since 1991.

Thursday’s tangle will also be DePaul’s Dig for the Cure match.

The Irish split their two contests over the past week by earning the program’s 600th overall win against West Virginia while falling to the Panthers one day later during the second annual Dig for the Cure match.

Junior Christina Kaelin continues to lead her team – and the conference – in a pair of statistical categories. In league play, Kaelin is seventh in hitting percentage (.355) and first in kills/set (4.43) while junior Jamel Nicholas is second overall in the conference with 12.10 assists/set. Most recently, Kaelin was part of the league’s weekly honor roll (Oct. 13) for the third time this season.

Notre Dame Fighting Irish
(9-9 overall / 4-2 BIG EAST)

DePaul Blue Demons
(2-16 overall / 1-5 BIG EAST)
Oct. 16 • 7:30 p.m. (CT) • McGrath Arena
Live video / stats:

Bump, Set, Spike …
• Eight team aces powered Notre Dame to win No. 600 in program history against West Virginia … after committing 17 service errors two weeks ago at Cincinnati, Notre Dame received four aces from Kristen Dealy in the first home BIG EAST match of the season … one day later, Notre Dame dropped a 3-1 contest to Pittsburgh during the team’s second annual Dig for the Cure match that raised over $6,000 for the Susan G. Komen for the Cure.
• Christina Kaelin had 11 kills with only error for a .500 clip to lead an Irish team that hit .370 in a contest with WVU (Oct. 11) … the Irish received 21 kills from Kaelin in the team’s next match versus Pittsburgh (Oct. 12) … her performance puts her in a four-way tie for third place on Notre Dame’s career list for matches with 20+ kills with six … she had 20 against Eastern Washington earlier this season … she averaged 4.57 kills/set over the two-match stretch.
• Setter Jamel Nicholas had a career-high 54 assists against Pittsburgh.
• Dealy opened the weekend with 13 kills on a .480 clip with eight digs and a career-high four aces against West Virginia … she picked up her fourth double-double on the season against Pittsburgh with 10 kills and 14 digs versus the Panthers … Dealy cleanly received 50 serves over the two-match stretch … she averaged 3.29 kills/set, 3.14 digs/set and was the only Irish player to average at least 3.00 kills/set and 3.00 digs/set).

Series History …
With five service aces and a pair of momentum shifting kills, Kim Kristoff helped propel Notre Dame to a 3-0 (30-12, 30-13, 30-15) sweep over DePaul in 2007 … it was the second-quickest match in the history of the Joyce Center … Kristoff tied a career-high total in the ace category, as Notre Dame coasted to post the widest margin of victory in the program’s history … the fifty-point spread was six more than the total number of points the Irish put on the board against Loyola in 2002 … a stifling Irish defense limited DePaul to a -.034 hitting percentage for the match, including a pair of sub-.000 games … it was the first time Notre Dame held an opponent under .000 hitting since Cincinnati finished with a -.057 mark in a 2005 match … for the first time since Notre Dame traveled to DePaul during the 2006 season to pick up a 3-0 win, not a single Irish player recorded double-digit kills … the match was played in front of 2,276 fans – the tenth-largest home crowd in Notre Dame history … the Irish took three-straight games from DePaul in 2006 … the two programs, formerly foes in the North Star Conference, will meet for the fourth time since 1995 and the 14th time overall … Notre Dame holds a 9-4 advantage in the all-time series, including wins in each of the last five matches … Notre Dame and DePaul played the fastest game in Irish history – a 40 minute match – on Sept. 26, 1995 … DePaul’s last victory against Notre Dame was a 3-1 win in the 1991 Miami Invitational in Oxford, Ohio, which was also the last time DePaul won a set against Notre Dame … the Irish hold a 29-11 advantage in sets won … the teams have never played a five-set match … all nine of Notre Dame’s victories have been in three sets … the schools first met in the 1983 Xavier Invitational in Cincinnati, Ohio, with the Blue Demons pulling out a 2-0 win … the first Irish win came one year later in a 3-0 home decision … Mary Kay Waller had 12 kills and no errors on 13 attempts for a .923 hitting percentage in a 1986 match that still stands as the highest-ever for an Irish player in any length match … in 1995, the Blue Demons finished with a -.110 hitting percentage (17 kills, 25 errors, 73 attempts), the lowest-ever by an Irish opponent.

The Dirt On DePaul …
The Blue Demons’ seven-match conference losing streak was snapped with a 3-0 victory over West Virginia on Oct. 12 … DePaul was up 2-0 on Pittsburgh on Oct. 11 before the Panthers roared through three straight sets to take a 3-2 win from the Blue Demons … junior Sarah Cullen led DePaul last weekend with 33 kills and registered double-digit kills in both matches.