Volleyball Wraps up Six-Match Homestand with League Tilts versus Rice and Houston
Sept. 24, 2009
Fri., Sept. 25 - Father/Daughter Night
Sat., Sept. 26 - Complete Release in PDF Format
MEMPHIS, Tenn. - The University of Memphis volleyball team looks to post its first home win of the year this weekend when it host Rice and Houston in a pair of Conference USA match-ups at the Elma Roane Fieldhouse. The Tigers will take on Rice, Fri., Sept. 25, and Houston on Sat., Sept. 26. Both matches are scheduled for 7 p.m.
Memphis, 2-12, comes into the weekend slate on the hunt for its first home win of the year. The Tigers have dropped five-straight overall and nine-straight at home dating back to last year. Memphis was outlasted by UAB in a five-set loss in last Thursday's league opener. The then dropped matches to Samford, New Orleans and UALR in the Tiger Invitational last weekend.
Hitting just .178 as a team, Memphis is led offensively by Altrese Hawkins and Katlin Inglish. Both have 127 kills and average 2.65 kills per set. Hawkins had a career night the last time out as she put away 24 kills versus UALR en route to garnering Tiger Invitational All-Tournament accolades. The redshirt freshman hit .244 and is second on the team in that category. Sophomore middle blocker Carolyn Baker leads the team in hitting, with a .265 percentage on 76 kills. Setters Christine Bach and Stephanie Pauls have both seen time at the controls of the U of M offense. Bach has a team-best 319 assists, while Pauls is tops on the club with a 7.89 assists per set average.
Defensively, the Tigers depend on the play of its backrow. Junior libero Becky Shaffer has made a team-high 210 digs (4.38 dps), while Bach has chipped in with 158. Defensive specialist Rachel Theard joins Bach and Shaffer as the lone Tigers with over 100 digs, checking in at 119. Junior middle blocker Emily Underwood leads the front line's defensive efforts with 37 total blocks.
Scouting the Rice Owls
Rice has put up impressive number in the early-goings of the year. The Owls rank 16 nationally with 17.31 digs per set, while the Rice offense is 21st in the country with 13.98 kills per set.
Libero Tracey Lam, a 2008 Second Team All-C-USA performer from a year ago, leads the conference and ranks 15th nationally with 5.29 digs per set (222 total). The Owls defense makes 2.17 blocks per set and is led by the play of senior middle blocker Natalie Bogan. Bogan, who earned First Team All-C-USA honors in 2008, leads the team with 46 total blocks and 1.10 rejections per set.
Offensively, Bogan has a team-best 139 kills, but more impressively, hits .383. That average is good for 38 in the nation. First Team All-C-USA setter Meredith Schamun rates 19th in the nation with 11.19 assists per set. All-Freshman honoree Ashleigh McCord leads the squad with 3.64 kills per set.
Last Time vs. Rice
Memphis (17-12; 8-7 C-USA) 28 15 22 Rice (21-5; 12-3 C-USA) 30 25 25
HOUSTON -Christine Bach made a match-high 14 digs, but Memphis was unable to come back from a tough game-one loss as it was swept by Rice in its final road match of the year.
Lauren Thompson paced the Memphis offense with 12 kills. She hit .375. Côté handed out 26 assists. The Tigers hit .046 for the match.
All-Time Series vs. Rice
Scouting the Houston Cougars
Setter Tara Roenicke and the UH offense has one primary in Kinsey Cave. Cave leads the team with 191 and 3.54 kills per set. No other Cougars attacker has more than 81 kills. Erin Rice, who has 81 kills, leads the team with a .288 attack percentage. Roenicke averages 8.93 assists per set.
Rice leads the defense with 37 total blocks, while Amanda Carson's 3.53 digs per set is tops on the team.
Last Time vs. Houston
Memphis (17-11; 8-6 C-USA) 18 13 15 Houston (16-11; 8-6 C-USA) 25 25 25
HOUSTON - Houston got a double-double of 12 kills and 11 digs from Ingrida Zaurere and its offense hit .402 en route to sweeping Memphis in C-USA play Friday night. The loss marked the first time this season the Tigers had been swept.
Memphis's offense was held to a paltry .080 attacking clip for the night, while its defense was able to muster just 25 total digs and four blocks. Rebekah Strickland led the offensive effort with six kills. Katlin Inglish and Lauren Thompson notched five each. Houston native Carolyn Baker was the most efficient hitter for Memphis, connecting for four kills and a .333 average. Setter Laura Côté set 18 assists.
Defensively, Côté led the way with six digs. Inglish and Emily Underwood recorded two total blocks each.
Houston's offense got a match-high 33 assists from setter Kelsey King, while Lucy Charuk knocked down 10 kills. Its defense recorded 10 blocks, including at least one block assist from six players. Barbara Freitas and Charuk made five block assists each.
All-Time Series vs. Houston