SKYHAWK VOLLEYBALL BEGINS OVC SLATE ON THE ROAD THIS WEEKEND
September 22, 2016
MARTIN, Tenn. – After 15 nonconference matches to begin the season, the University of Tennessee at Martin volleyball team starts Ohio Valley Conference play with a pair of road matchups this weekend. The Skyhawks will travel to two-time defending league champion Murray State on Friday, Sept. 23 before visiting in-state rival Austin Peay on Saturday, Sept. 24.
Through the season’s first month, UT Martin (4-11) has been led by junior middle blocker Jemima Idemudia. The transfer out of Scottsdale Community College leads the Skyhawks with 134 kills (2.68 per set) and 56 blocks (1.12 per set) – ranking fourth in the OVC in the latter category. She is coming off two of her best matches of the season, as she spiked 14 kills in the four-set win at UAB and added a career-best 20 kills against Louisiana-Lafayette last weekend.
Kelly Lean has handed out an OVC-best 10.06 assists per set while Alisha Erves – who hit .391 with 24 kills against Austin Peay last season – sports a team-high .373 attack percentage. Colleen Larson’s average of 3.52 digs per set ranks ninth in the OVC as the senior libero paces the Skyhawk defense.
Two-time OVC Player of the Year Scottie Ingram sets the tone for Murray State (5-7), who has combined for a 29-3 conference record in its last two championship seasons. Ingram ranks second in the OVC with 202 kills (4.21 per set) while Rachel Giustino (3.31 kills per set on a team-high .251 attack percentage) has won two of the four OVC Newcomer of the Week awards in 2016.
Austin Peay (9-6) enters the weekend on a four-game winning streak, as the Governors swept the Bulldog Invitational hosted by The Citadel last weekend. As a result, Cecily Gable (Offensive, 2.75 kills per set), Kristen Stucker (Setter, 9.81 assists per set) and Kaitlyn Teeter (Newcomer, 2.67 kills per set) picked up OVC weekly awards on Monday. Ashley Slay accounts for team-highs of 2.88 kills per set and 1.06 blocks per set for Austin Peay, who ranks second in the OVC in hitting percentage (.208).
Both matches this weekend will be streamed live, free of charge, on the OVC Digital Network at the links above. Links for live stats for Friday’s 7 p.m. matchup at Murray State and for Saturday’s 2 p.m. match at Austin Peay can be found at the top of the webpage.