MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – The West Virginia University volleyball team is set to hit the road for matches against Texas Tech on Saturday, Oct. 27, and No. 17 Kansas on Monday, Oct. 29.
WVU will start in Lubbock, Texas and take on the Red Raiders at 7 p.m., at the United Spirit Arena, before traveling to Lawrence, Kan., to take on the Jayhawks at 7:30 p.m., at the Horejsi Family Athletics Center.
“We are excited about our trip out to both of these venues for the first time,” coach Jill Kramer says. “We have really improved some specific areas of our game, how organized we are on the court and we need to keep after our serving and passing game. Most importantly, we need to come out on the road and play composed and when we have good support from the bench, we do well.”
The Mountaineers (8-15, 0-9 Big 12) began the second half of Big 12 play with a 3-0 loss to No. 16 Kansas State this past Wednesday. The team was held to 26 kills in the match and was led by freshman outside hitter Nikki Attea
who posted eight. Junior defensive specialist Liz Gulick
led the team with 10 digs in the match, while freshman setter Brittany Sample
chipped in eight and one service ace.
Freshman outside hitter Hannah Sackett
and Attea currently guide the WVU offense with 222 and 202 kills, respectively. Both players have also posted over 100 digs so far this season, while Sackett is also second on the team in service aces with 26. Sophomore middle blocker Evyn McCoy
and Sackett are both ranked No. 6 in the Big 12 in service aces per set with 0.31.
This will be the first match in the second half of Big 12 play for the Red Raiders (12-12, 1-7 Big 12) who dropped a five set loss last weekend to then-No. 14 Kansas State. Meghan Stacy recorded a career-high 19 kills in the match, while Rachel Brummitt anchored the back row with 21 digs.
Texas Tech has six players with over 100 kills so far this season with five of those players averaging over 2.00 kills per set. Emily Ehrle leads the way with 208 kills and 2.45 kills per set. Brummitt leads all players with 406 digs and is ranked No. 4 in the Big 12 in digs per set with 4.46.
Last time these two teams met, the Red Raiders defeated WVU in Morgantown, W.Va., 3-1, to earn their first conference win of the season.
Kansas (19-4, 7-2) is in second place after the first half of Big 12 conference play and its No. 17 ranking in the AVCA poll is the highest in program history. The Jayhawks dropped only their second conference match of the season this past week to No. 22 Iowa State, with Sara McClinton leading the way with 14 kills.
Reigning AVCA National Player of the Week and Big 12 Defensive Player of the Week Caroline Jarmoc almost recorded a double-double in the match against the Cyclones, with 13 kills and nine blocks. Jarmoc leads the team with 313 kills, 3.60 kills per set and 120 total blocks.
The Jayhawks defeated the Mountaineers earlier this season in Morgantown, W.Va., 3-1 and Jarmoc led both teams with 14 kills and a .538 hitting percentage.