JOHNSON CITY, TENN. (Sept. 23, 2004) - The ETSU volleyball team (1-9, 0-0 SoCon) will open conference play this weekend as they host Appalachian State (7-5, 0-0 SoCon) on Friday at 7:00 p.m. and then welcome the Western Carolina Catamounts (3-5, 0-0 SoCon) to Johnson City on Saturday at 2:00 p.m. Both matches will be played in Brooks Gymnasium, the home of Lady Bucs volleyball. This weekend is also Alumni Weekend for the Lady Bucs. The festivities will include an alumni match versus the current Bucs on Saturday morning at 10:00 a.m. as well as recognition for those alumni in attendance at this weekend's matches.
"We are very pleased to have the opportunity to honor past alumni this weekend. It is so encouraging to see past players out to support the present team," Lady Bucs head coach Lindsey Devine had to say. "Alumni are the foundation of the growing success of our present squad as well as future teams to come."
Heading into weekend competition, the Lady Bucs welcome the start of conference play after a long and tough non-conference schedule. With matches versus Kentucky, Purdue, and Central Michigan last week, ETSU continued to grow as a team and work towards the Southern Conference championships. Jennifer Sartor (Purcellville, Va.) was named to the All-Tournament Team last weekend at the Mortar Board Premier hosted by Purdue University in West Lafayette, Ind. Sartor posted 24 kills, nine total blocks and a combined 29 digs throughout weekend competition. Her best offensive performance of the weekend came against the Boilermakers where she managed a .333 hitting percentage averaging a 2.18 kills per game average. Thus far in 2004, Sartor boasts a team-high hitting percentage of .220 with 94 kills and a team-high 32.0 total blocks heading into Southern Conference competition this weekend.
Freshman Callie Kiselich (Colorado Springs, Co.) has begun a dominant freshman campaign at the net for the Bucs. Kiselich has 87 kills in 36 games for ETSU adding 28 total blocks and 37 assists through non-conference play. Brittany Kessel (Libertyville, Ill.), a 2004 transfer from Kent State University, has stepped into the setter position for ETSU posting a 9.39 apg average with a tally of 338 for the year.
"Our team is very excited for our first weekend of competition at home. The feeling of hearing the crowd cheer our girls on will be a big motivating factor for our squad. This weekend our team will have the opportunity to show the community the hard work that has been put forth while on the road through our non-conference schedule," Devine said.
Appalachian State and ETSU collided last in October 2003 where the Mountaineers swept the Lady Bucs 0-3 (22-30, 22-30, 25-30). Appalachian State leads the all-time series with ETSU 15-34, however the Lady Bucs look to minimize the difference this weekend. Led by third-year head coach Angell Benson, Western Carolina will face Chattanooga on Friday night before traveling to Johnson City to face the Bucs on Saturday afternoon. The Catamounts enter the weekend 3-5, 0-0 in conference play.