THURSDAY, OCTOBER 06, 2011
Volleyball preps for final long road weekend on Friday
The JU volleyball team will pack for its final long road trip of the season starting Friday in Johnson City, Tenn.

The Dolphins (9-10, 2-2 A-Sun) will play against ETSU on Friday at 7 p.m. and finish on Saturday in Spartanburg, S.C. against USC Upstate at 3 p.m. After this weekend, the Dolphins will play seven of their final 10 matches at home.

“We had a solid week last weekend,” JU head coach Shaun Kupferberg said. “We are looking forward to continuing to improve as we move towards the A-Sun tournament. These two places are very tough to play in so we will have to remain focused if we want to come away with victories.”

JU has not cheated the fans in the conference schedule after playing in three five-set matches in the first four contests. Last week, the Dolphins downed Mercer in five sets, but dropped a 3-1 decision to Kennesaw State to end the weekend.

Junior Alison Loeppky continues to be the most consistent player for the Dolphins with team-high 56 blocks and ranking second in kills with 162. In the last seven matches, Loeppky has hit double-digit kills four times, including 15 in the win against Mercer.

Senior Kathryn Kane returned to the lineup from injury last week to post 11 kills and 13 digs against Kennesaw State.

The Lady Bucs (7-10, 1-2) have lost five of their last six matches, including losses to Belmont and Lipscomb in Nashville last weekend. ETSU’s lone win came against USC Upstate, 3-0, in the A-Sun opener on Sept. 20.

Megan Devine has a team-best 249 kills and 153 digs for the Lady Bucs. Ivey Rice has nearly matched Devine totals with 112 kills and 111 digs.

The Spartans (4-11, 0-3) dropped 3-0 matches to Belmont and Lipscomb in Nashville in their latest action.

Morgan Thomas leads the Spartans offensively with 144 kills, while Kelsie Queen has tallied 104 strikes for second on the squad. Morgan Pace paces USC Upstate with 212 digs.

Last season, the Dolphins dropped a five-set match to ETSU, but bounced back with a 3-1 victory against USC Upstate. JU won both matches in its same road trip in 2009.

Fans can follow both matches through live stats and live video streaming on A-Sun.TV by logging onto JUDolphins.com.