JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (Nov. 6, 2014) – Following a pair of thrilling five-set home wins, the ETSU volleyball team hits the road as the Bucs are gunning for the series sweep over Wofford on Friday night at 6 p.m. On Saturday, the Blue and Gold return home to host Samford for a 3 p.m. “Senior Day” match inside Brooks Gym.
LAST TIME OUT FOR THE BUCS
ETSU rallied for a five-set win over Western Carolina (25-17, 24-26, 15-25, 26-24, 15-13), marking head coach Lindsey Devine’s 200th career victory on Tuesday night inside Brooks Gym.
Senior Meredith Hardy (Kingsport, Tenn.) recorded a match-high 21 kills and sophomore Briana Allmon (Flower Mound, Texas) sparked the Bucs’ offense by coming off the bench for 13 kills and a .429 attack percentage.
The Bucs had four players record double-digit digs as sophomore setter Kristen Favre (Plano, Texas) finished with 37 assists and 15 digs, marking her second double-double of the season – both coming against the Catamounts. Freshman Rylee Milhorn (Kingsport, Tenn.) totaled a career-high 19 digs, while junior Ashleigh Shain (Geneva, Ill.) tied a career-best with 15 digs. Senior Katie Muey (Alexandria, Ind.), the reigning SoCon Defensive Player of the Month and Week, led all players with 33 digs.
As a team, the Blue and Gold were plus-10 in kills (67-57), plus 13 in assists (64-51) and plus-6 in digs (102-96).
Following the victory, ETSU extended its home win streak to eight straight matches and improved to 13-15, 7-5.
Wofford has dropped five of its last seven matches and sits 12-17, 4-8 on the season.
The Terriers are led by the duo of Taylor Baird and Bella Santoro as they are both averaging 3.38 kills per set, while freshman setter Molly Mayo quarterbacks the offense as she has totaled 1,049 of Wofford’s 1,315 assists on the year.
Wofford ranks second in the SoCon in kills (13.37), assists (12.52) and service aces per set (1.63).
Five of the Terriers’ 12 wins have come at home, while nine of their wins have been in three sets.
ETSU vs. WOFFORD
The Bucs have won five straight over Wofford and ETSU leads the all-time series, 14-4.
The Blue and Gold swept the Terriers last month in Johnson City as ETSU out-blocked Wofford, 11-1. The Bucs also hit a season-high .347 (42-8-98), while senior Ivey Rice (Johnson City, Tenn.) posted a match-high 11 kills.
After winning 11 straight matches from Sept. 20-Oct. 24, Samford (16-9, 10-2) has lost two of its last three matches. The Bulldogs, who have lost to UNCG and Mercer during this stretch, are tied for the league-lead with Furman.
Samford features the reigning SoCon Player of the Year in Michaela Reesor as she leads the SoCon with 3.79 kills per set and is eighth in service aces per set (0.32). Sophomore setter Erkia Pifer ranks second in the league in assists per set (10.96), while junior middle blocker Emily Meitz is fifth in the SoCon in attack percentage (.326) and eighth in blocks per set (0.86).
The Bulldogs are 10-5 in three-set matches this season, but 6-9 in matches decided in four or five sets.
ETSU vs. SAMFORD
Saturday marks just the second all-time meeting between the two programs as Samford defeated ETSU in five sets last month in Birmingham.
The Bulldogs won the first two sets of the match, and despite the Bucs fighting back to force a winner-take-all fifth set, Samford held on for the home win.
Ivey Rice and Bethany Gesell both tallied 11 kills, while junior Khadijah Wiley (Columbus, Ga.) added nine kills and eight blocks. Gesell also recorded nine digs, two blocks and two service aces. Senior Jamie Rutledge (Kingsport, Tenn.) led ETSU with 22 assists and Kristen Favre finished with 20 assists, eight digs and four services.
The Bulldogs overcame 14 service errors by finishing plus-17 in kills, 64-47, while out-hitting ETSU, .261 (64-24-153) to .227 (47-18-128). Both teams totaled eight service aces, and the Bucs were plus-3 in digs (55-52) and plus-1 in blocks (10-9).
Meredith Hardy, ETSU’s career leader in blocks, now has 598 blocks and 1,270 career kills … Hardy ranks fifth all-time in program history in kills, while her 598 career blocks rank second among active NCAA Division I players.
Hardy has recorded at least one block in 121 straight matches, while she’s the only active NCAA Division I player with over 1,200 kills and 500 blocks.
Katie Muey broke ETSU’s career digs record in the five-set win over Chattanooga on Nov. 1 and has 1,734 digs in her career, which ranks 16th among active NCAA Division I players … Muey is the active leader in sets played (491), while she has played in all 126 matches since stepping foot on campus her freshman year in 2011.
Katie Muey ranks fifth nationally in total digs this season with 572 and Meredith Hardy is 20th in total blocks (124). Muey’s 37 service aces also rank 28th in the country.
As a team, ETSU ranks 20th nationally in total digs (1,691), 23rd in total blocks (249), 34th in total assists (1,241) and 38th in service aces (141).
Coach Devine, ETSU’s all-time winningest coach, registered her 200th career win on Tuesday night against Western Carolina.
Along with their eight-match home win streak, the Bucs have won 27 of their last 30 matches inside Brooks Gym.
Both matches this weekend will feature live video and live stats. Below are the multimedia links for the two matches:
ETSU fans wanting to receive Buccaneer news, score updates, in-game promotions and much more sent to their mobile device can do so by signing up for “Buc Updates.” Click here to sign up today!
For more information on Buccaneer volleyball, visit ETSUBucs.com and click on the volleyball page.