Volleyball Heads South for ASUN Battles at FGCU, Stetson

Volleyball Heads South for ASUN Battles at FGCU, Stetson

MATCH #19: Jacksonville at Florida Gulf Coast Eagles
DATE:  Friday, Oct. 13 – 7:00 pm
SITE: Alico Arena – Fort Myers, Fla.
2017 RECORDS: Jacksonville (11-7, 5-0 ASUN); Florida Gulf Coast (13-6, 4-1 ASUN)
LIVE STATS: Florida Gulf Coast
LIVE VIDEO: Facebook Live

MATCH #20: Jacksonville at Stetson Hatters
DATE: Saturday, Oct. 14 – 6:00 pm
SITE: Edmunds Center – DeLand, Fla.
2017 RECORDS: Jacksonville (11-7, 5-0 ASUN); Stetson (3-14, 2-3 ASUN)
LIVE VIDEO: Facebook Live
*Stetson record prior to Oct. 13

With a six-game win streak and an unblemished league record on the line, Jacksonville University volleyball hits the road this weekend with a pair of tough ASUN Conference contests at Florida Gulf Coast and Stetson. The Dolphins square off with FGCU Friday, Oct. 13 at 7:00 pm, and face Stetson Saturday, Oct. 14 at 6:00 pm.

Nifty 50

Head Coach Julie Darty earned her 50th career victory Oct. 6 with a 3-1 win over Kennesaw State. The fourth-year head coach guided the Dolphins to a sweep last weekend for its sixth straight victory and their first 5-0 start to league play since 2007. Since taking over the program in 2014, the Dolphins have won at least 10 games in three of four seasons with Darty at the helm and have amassed a 25-22 record against ASUN opponents.

Last Time Out – vs. Kennesaw State and Lipscomb

Jacksonville earned a sweep last weekend to extend its winning streak to six matches and remain unbeaten in the ASUN Conference. With a 3-1 win over Kennesaw State Oct. 6 and an identical score the following day over Lipscomb, the Dolphins started league play 5-0 for the first time since 2007.

The Dolphins hit over .230 in each of the seven of eight sets on the weekend as Mallory Mattingly (16 kills, 21 digs) and Natalie Wehner (14 kills, 14 digs) posted double-doubles against Kennesaw State. Amarrah Cooks (13 kills) and Olga Nushtayeva (12 kills) also added 10+ kills for JU during the match. Nushtayeva added five blocks against the Owls, while Cooks added five blocks the following day for the duo to total seven blocks each on the weekend. Alleah Stamatis accumulated 85 assists – 56 against KSU and 29 against Lipscomb, while Mackenzie Swan totaled 30 digs on the weekend for 4.00 digs per set. Swan was named ASUN Defensive Player of the Week for her efforts in the Dolphins' three matches last week.

Where They Rank …

The Dolphins rank in the top three in the ASUN in each of the statistical categories tracked by the NCAA. JU is in the top three in the league in the following:

  • Opponent hitting percentage (0.189) – second (113th nationally)
  • Team assists (850) – second (83rd nationally)
  • Team digs (1,121) – second (71st nationally)
  • Team kills (907) – second (92nd nationally)
  • Team total blocks (137.0) – second
  • Digs per set (15.57) – third (109th nationally)
  • Hitting percentage (0.198) – third
  • Team attacks per set (35.96) – third (104th nationally)

Individually, several Dolphins rank in the top 10 in the ASUN:

  • Mallory Mattingly leads the ASUN with 721 total attacks (78th in the nation), and is second in the league with 10.76 attacks per set (62nd in the nation).
  • Additionally, Mattingly is tied for third in service aces (22), third in points scored (261.0) and points per set (3.9), and fifth in service aces per set (0.33),
  • Alleah Stamatis ranks second in the league with 606 assists, and is fifth with 8.42 assists per set.
  • Mackenzie Swan is currently third in the ASUN with 299 total digs and fifth in the league with 4.15 digs per set.
  • Two Dolphins rank in the top 10 in the ASUN in hitting percentage – Amarrah Cooks ranks third with a .324 hitting percentage, and Olga Nushtayeva is eighth with a .261 hitting percentage.
  • A trio of Dolphins are in a three-way tie for seventh in the conference with 11 solo blocks each – Amarrah Cooks, Hannah Marchand, and Olga Nushtayeva.
  • Marchand ranks sixth in the ASUN with 0.85 blocks per set.
  • Cooks ranks eighth in the ASUN in both total blocks (52) and block assists (41), while Nushtayeva is ninth in both categories (51 total blocks, 40 block assists).

ASUN Weekly Honors

Three Dolphins have earned ASUN Player of the Week honors this season, with the most recent being senior libero/defensive specialist Mackenzie Swan. The Colorado Springs, Colo. native was named ASUN Defensive Player of the Week for the third time in her career after amassing 53 digs in three matches last week to help the Dolphins extend their win streak to six, and sweep Kennesaw State and Lipscomb to remain unbeaten in the ASUN at 5-0. Swan posted back-to-back 20+ dig performances against Bethune-Cookman (21 digs) and Kennesaw State (22 digs).

Sophomore outside hitter Mallory Mattingly earned her second career ASUN Conference Player of the Week honor after posting career numbers over the weekend. The Sanford, Fla. native totaled 10 service aces on the weekend – four at USC Upstate and a career-best six at NJIT – to move into third in the league with 21 aces. Mattingly also posted her seventh double-double of the season with 16 kills and 14 digs against the Spartans. The Dolphins swept the weekend with a 3-2 victory over the Spartans and a 3-0 win against the Highlanders.

Hannah Marchand continued to impress in the league after earning her second ASUN Freshman of the Week honors following her performance at UNF on Sept. 22. The Sturgis, Mich. native posted seven kills, three digs, and led the team with six blocks. Marchand previously earned ASUN Freshman of the Week honors Aug. 28 after an impressive weekend at Clemson's Big Orange Bash. The middle-blocker opened her collegiate career with 11 kills and four blocks against Lamar en route to a .476 hitting percentage.

The Series with Florida Gulf Coast

Florida Gulf Coast holds a 14-10 advantage in the all-time series with Jacksonville, as the Eagles have won the past three matches between the teams. The Dolphins last claimed victory over FGCU on Halloween 2015 at Fort Myers with a 3-2 win.

Scouting the Eagles

Florida Gulf Coast is 13-6 on the year and 4-1 in the ASUN, with their only conference loss coming at Kennesaw State on Sept. 30. The Eagles enter Friday's match on a four-game winning streak.

FGCU leads the league hitting .272, good for 20th in the nation. The Eagles are also second in the ASUN in assists per set (12.95, 48th in the nation), blocks per set (2.05, 150th in the nation), and kills per set (13.87, 42nd in the nation).

Individually, several Eagles lead the ASUN statistically. Notably, Amanda Carroll leads the league with 314.0 points, 5.23 points per set, and ranks second in the ASUN with 274 kills, 23 service aces, and 0.38 service aces per set. Additionally, Maggie Rick leads the league in assists (684), and assists per set (11.21), while Daniele Serrano and Karissa Rhoades top the ASUN in hitting percentage (.398) and digs per set (4.48), respectively. Sharonda Pickering also ranks second in the league with 1.09 blocks per set.

The Series with Stetson

Jacksonville leads the all-time series with Stetson, 54-11. The Dolphins won both meetings between the teams last season, first with a 3-1 win in DeLand, then with a 3-2 victory at home.

Scouting the Hatters

Stetson is 3-14 overall this season and 2-3 in league play. The Hatters defeated both NJIT (3-2) and USC Upstate (3-1) last weekend in DeLand and are riding a two-game win streak into the weekend.

As a team, the Hatters rank in the top five of the ASUN in several categories. Stetson is second in the league in digs per set (15.88, 88th nationally), third in blocks per set (2.00), fourth in total blocks (128.0), and fifth in total digs (1,016).

Individually, Hao Jin leads the league with 17 solo blocks and is third with 62 total blocks. Jin also ranks fourth in the ASUN with 0.97 blocks per set. Naina Ivanova ranks fourth in the league with 8.42 assists per set, while Shelby Connors is tied for fifth with 12 solo blocks. Chelcie Spence ranks sixth with 3.97 digs per set and seventh with 254 digs. Eva Deisa ranks 10th in the league behind 192.5 points scored. 

Neighbors Helping Neighbors

Jacksonville University Athletics, along with JU Volleyball, would like to extend its sincerest gratitude to the University of North Florida Athletics for opening its doors in the aftermath of Hurricane Irma.

Jacksonville's Historic Swisher Gymnasium earned some battle scars in early September from Irma, and was rendered unplayable for the foreseeable future. The Ospreys graciously and selflessly opened UNF Arena to allow JU to continue to practice, as well as host its home-opening tournament – the Dolphin Invitational – Sept. 15-16.

Although rivals in spirit, we are all part of the Jacksonville community. Thank you, North Florida and UNF Athletics.

Up Next

The Dolphins return to action next Friday, Oct. 20 when they face North Florida in round two of the River City Rumble at 7:00 pm at UNF Arena.