THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 22, 2011
Volleyball opens A-Sun slate at FGCU on Friday
The JU volleyball team is looking turn the ship beginning Friday with the A-Sun opener against Florida Gulf Coast in Fort Myers, Fla. at 6 p.m.
The Dolphins (7-8), who enter the week on a three-match losing streak, wrap the first conference weekend the next day against Stetson in DeLand, Fla. at 3 p.m.
“The beginning of conference season is always a fresh start for everyone,” JU head coach Shaun Kupferberg said. “Hopefully our team is able to settle into our new roles and we expect to be competing for a conference championship.”
Since posting a 4-1 mark the second week of the season, the Dolphins have lost four of their last six matches. They dropped a 3-0 decision to Troy at Swisher Gymnasium in their latest action on Sept. 18.
Senior Alliya Drzewiecki has been the rock through the current lineup and roster changes for JU, posting 52 kills in 21 sets. Junior Alison Loeppky has recorded 46 kills, while sophomore Niatha Cullen has 40 kills to go along with 40 kills in extended action.
The Eagles (5-7) had their three-match winning streak snapped by No. 5 Penn State with a 3-1 loss in the finale of the Penn State Classic on Sept. 17.
Jill Hopper was named to the all-tournament team and received A-Sun “Player of the Week” by totaling 38 kills in three matches at the Penn State Classic. She currently paces FGCU with 136 kills.
The Hatters (2-7) enter the first conference weekend on four-match losing streak since picking up their lone wins of the season against Bethune-Cookman (Sept.9) and Savannah State (Sept. 10).
Kaley Melville is a bright spot for Stetson, recording a team-best 111 kills in nine matches. She also is third on the team in digs with 74.
Last season, the Dolphins were able to get off to a 2-0 start in A-Sun play against these same two teams. JU downed FGCU in five sets before recording a 3-0 win vs. Stetson the following day.
Fans can follow the action through live stats or video streaming on A-Sun.TV by logging onto JUDolphins.com.