Redbirds Face Key Road Matchups With Creighton, Drake

Oct. 22, 2009

 ILLINOIS STATE (9-11, 4-5 MVC) vs. CREIGHTON (7-12, 4-5 MVC)
 Date  October 23  //  7 p.m.
 Location  D.J. Sokol Arena  //  Omaha, Neb.
 Video  Redbird All-Access
 Live Stats  GameTracker
 Match Notes  Illinois State  //  Creighton

 ILLINOIS STATE (9-11, 4-5 MVC) vs. DRAKE (16-7, 5-4 MVC)
 Date  October 24  //  7 p.m.
 Location  Knapp Center  //  Des Moines, Iowa
 Video  None
 Live Stats
 Match Notes  Illinois State  //  Drake

Illinois State leads the all-time series with Creighton, 24-10.The series began in 1994 and the Redbirds won 23 of the first 26 meetings. ISU won the first 10 meetings (1994-98) and had an 11-match winning streak from 2001-05. Of ISU’s 24 wins, 14 have come in straight-sets, while the Bluejays have never swept the Redbirds. ISU snapped a seven-match Creighton winning streak with a five-set win earlier this season.

Illinois State leads the all-time series with Drake, 48-6. ISU won the first 22 meetings in the series. Drake won its first match over ISU in the 1994 State Farm MVC Tournament. That win sparked a five-match winning streak for the Bulldogs, lasting until the first meeting of 1996. The Redbirds went on to win 26-straight matches over the Bulldogs, until Drake snapped that streak with a five-set win earlier this year. Drake has not swept the season series since 1995.

ISU plays the four teams it is either tied with or one match ahead of or behind in the Valley standings over the next four matches. The Redbirds enter the weekend tied for fifth place with Evansville and Creighton, one match behind Drake and one match ahead of Southern Illinois. Creighton receives an automatic bid to the tournament by virtue of hosting it.

Illinois State comes into the match against Indiana State with 296 all-time wins in Valley play. The Redbirds are on the verge of becoming just the second team to reach 300 Valley wins, joining Northern Iowa (336). Missouri State also has 296 Valley wins. Illinois State is 296-98 all-time in Valley play.

Junior Mallory Leggett is on the verge of a historic achievement of her own. Leggett enters the match against Indiana State on the cusp of becoming the 18th member of the ISU 1,000 kill club. Leggett has 968 career kills, amassing more than 350 kills in her first two seasons and leading the team with 221 this season.