This Week in Atlantic Sun Volleyball: Oct. 4th

Thursday, October 04, 2012

MACON, Ga. - FGCU and Lipscomb look to remain undefeated and Kennesaw State and Mercer play their first A-Sun road games as a portion of the 13 matches scheduled from Fri., Oct. 5, through Tuesday, Oct. 9.

A-Sun Volleyball Notes (#ASunVB)

• Lipscomb’s Kaycee Green claimed back-to-back A-Sun Volleyball Player of the Week honors for Sept. 24 and Oct. 1, the first time since 2009 that a player has done so. The last to repeat the honor was the Bisons’ Alex Kelly on Oct. 5 and Oct. 12, 2009. Kelly claimed eight POW honors in her career. Green has tallied 87 kills over the last two weeks and hit no lower than .310, including a .429 hitting pct. in the Bisons’ match with KSU and a season-high of 22 kills during that stretch. She is second in kills in the A-Sun with 4.35 per set and ninth in hitting pct. (3.18). The Bisons face USC Upstate and ETSU in road matches this weekend, and are 3-0 in conference road games thus far.

• Kennesaw State and Mercer take to the road in conference play for the first time this season, heading first to the Sunshine State to battle Jacksonville and North Florida in weekend action. KSU also faces USC Upstate in Spartanburg on Tuesday, while Mercer heads to Johnson City to tangle with the Bucs. The Owls are 4-0 in away games overall this season, while the Bears are 1-3. Last season KSU posted a 4-2 record in road A-Sun contests, including road wins over JU, UNF and USC Upstate. Mercer was 2-5 in road conference games last year, but dropped all three contests to their next three opponents.

• FGCU heads to DeLand to face Stetson, looking for retribution for one of only three Eagles A-Sun losses last season. FGCU then steps out of conference play for its next match, hosting Bethune-Cookman on Tues., Oct. 9. A-Sun schools are 12-2 vs. the MEAC this season. The Eagles own the longest current A-Sun win streak of six games, and they are 3-0 at home in Alico Arena this season. FGCU leads the A-Sun in kills (14.85/set), assists (13.80) and opponent hitting pct. (.141), and are second in hitting pct. (.260). Olivia Mesner is also second in the A-Sun in hitting pct. (.457) and tied for third in blocks per set (1.20). This is also the first season since 2008-09 that the Eagles have opened their conference season 6-0.

• Northern Kentucky continues its season of firsts, hitting the road to face ETSU and USC Upstate for the first time in A-Sun action. The Norse continue to be road warriors, now 7-0 overall and 2-0 on the road in the A-Sun. NKU has won four straight since their lone conference loss to Lipscomb, and rank second in the conference in digs (15.53/set) and third in hitting pct. (.260). Shelby Buschur is tied for fitfh in kills (3.47/set) and hitting pct. (.380), while Jenna Schreiver is third in assists (10.89) and Kylee Tarantino is second in digs (4.63/set).

• ETSU opens a season-long five-game home stand beginning Friday night when the Bucs host A-Sun newcomer Northern Kentucky at Brooks Gym. Then, on Saturday, ETSU takes on three-time reigning A-Sun Tournament champion, Lipscomb. The Bucs won a five-set thriller over Lipscomb in Johnson City last season, but are 1-3 vs. the Bisons in their last four meetings at home. ETSU leads the A-Sun in blocks (2.93/set) and are ranked 39th nationally in the category. Individually three Bucs lead the A-Sun: Megan Devine in kills (4.36/set), Katie Muey and Devine in service aces (.43/set) and Meredith hardy in blocks (1.86/set). Hardy is also ranked 22nd nationally in blocks, her highest ranking of the season.

• North Florida is 1-3 vs. Kennesaw State and 2-2 vs. Mercer in its last four matches in UNF Arena. The Ospreys are 1-0 in A-Sun play and 4-0 overall this season at home, while the Owls and the Bears play their first conference road games this season. Overall KSU has fared well on the road with a 4-0 mark, while the Bears are 1-3 away from home. UNF leads the A-Sun in service aces (1.58/set) and Dagnija Medina is 13th in the nation in the category (.49/set). The Ospreys are also 23rd nationally in digs (17.43/set), while Nicole Baran is 13th in the nation and third in the A-Sun (4.53/set).

• USC Upstate faces a big weekend in Spartanburg, as second-place Lipscomb and third-place NKU visit the Hodge Center. The Spartans have not beaten the Bisons since joining the A-Sun in 2007, and this is their first meeting with the Norse. The Spartans’ Kayla McAvoy leads the A-Sun in hitting pct. (.468) and as a team the Spartans are 33rd in the nation in digs per set (17.15).

• Stetson hosts A-Sun leader FGCU in its lone A-Sun match of the week, then steps out of conference to host Savannah State. The Hatters defeated the Eagles, 3-2, in DeLand last season, handing FGCU one of only three A-Sun losses. Stetson’s Ellen Hawks and Monique Russell are moving up the A-Sun career active lists, Hawks as the current active leader in blocks (242) and Russell second in digs and 13th all-time (1300).