Brother Rice will host the inaugural “Crusader Chicago Challenge” NAIA men’s volleyball match between the Fighting Bees of St. Ambrose University and the Cougars of neighboring St. Xavier University at 7:00 p.m. on Tuesday, February 2.
St. Xavier is fielding a men’s volleyball team for the first time. The Cougars’ roster features 12 freshmen from the Chicago area. Among the familiar names are outside hitter Matt Yerkes from Marist, setter Jack Malone from Brother Rice and 6-foot-6 middle Evan Muys from Sandburg.
Meanwhile, St. Ambrose’s 15-man roster is a “who’s who” of Chicago-area talent led by 6-foot-5 freshman outside Dan Dierking of Naperville Central, 6-3 junior Scott Manthei of Brother Rice, 6-2 sophomore Hayden Grove of Providence and 6-6 senior Ryan Schneider of Barrington.
St. Ambrose, which has been selected to host the 2010 and 2011 NAIA Men’s Volleyball National Tournament Championship, is coached by 2001 Brother Rice graduate Bill Gleeson.
Amber Rolfzen and Kadie Rolfzen, 6-foot-2 identical twins from Papillion-La Vista South High School in Nebraska who led their team to the Class A state final, were named PrepVolleyball.com’s 2009 National Freshmen of the Year.
Amber Rolfzen finished the season with 444 kills, 286 digs, 55 blocks and 31 aces for the 36-5 Titans. Kadie Rolfzen, who was slowed by a staph infection during the state tournament, recorded 443 kills, 267 digs, 66 blocks and 27 aces.
The Lincoln (Neb.) Journal-Star made both part of their seven-player super state team and the Omaha World-Herald recognized the twins on their seven-player All-Nebraska team. Both have already committed to the University of Nebraska.
Lauren Sieckmann, a 5-foot-10 setter and right side attacker who led Omaha’s Marian High School to a 42-1 record and the Nebraska Class A title, has been named PrepVolleyball.com’s 2009 National Sophomore of the Year.
Sieckmann, the daughter of former PGA Tour golfer Tom Sieckmann, was selected State Player of the Year by the Lincoln (Neb.) Journal-Star, Omaha World-Herald and Gatorade. She finished season with 660 assists and 330 kills and added almost 200 digs.
She has been chosen as a setter for the 2010 U.S. Youth National Team and has committed to setting in 2012 for the University of Nebraska.