UK Faces Final Nonconference Road Test at Carolina Classic
LEXINGTON, Ky. - The No. 16 University of Kentucky volleyball team travels to Chapel Hill, N.C., Sept. 13-14 for the Carolina Classic. The Wildcats face No. 17 North Carolina Friday at 6:30 p.m. ET and VCU and Georgia Southern Saturday at 10 a.m. and 5 p.m., respectively.
Coming off a victory at in-state rival Louisville in its first road match of the season, UK (5-1) is 11-4 all-time against UNC (4-1). The Wildcats and Tar Heels last meet in 2012, a 3-0 UK victory in Lexington. Saturday’s contest against VCU (1-5) marks the second in as many years after a 3-2 UK win last season in Lexington gave the Wildcats a 3-0 edge in the all-time series. Kentucky and GSU (0-6) will meet for the first time Saturday.
|CAROLINA CLASSIC MATCH CENTER|
| Friday, Sept. 12: UK at #17 North Carolina, 6:30 p.m. |
Saturday, Sept. 13: UK vs. VCU, 10 a.m.
Saturday, Sept. 13: UK vs. Georgia Southern, 5 p.m.
Where: Carmichael Arena, Chapel Hill, N.C.
Video: GoHeels.com (vs. UNC) |
Live Stats: GoHeels.com
Match Info: Match Notes (PDF)
Tournament Info: GoHeels.com
An audio broadcast of UK’s matches at the Carolina Classic will be available on UKathletics.com. Live stats from all six matches in the four-team tournament, along with a video stream of UK’s match vs. UNC can be found on GoHeels.com.
In Tuesday’s 3-1 win at Louisville, Kentucky was led by junior Shelby Workman’s career-high 21 kills. Workman, who has led UK in kills in each of the last five matches, tallied 13 kills in the third set, a program-record in the 25-point rally scoring era. She had a career-high .348 hitting percentage and added 12 digs for her first double-double of her career. Senior Jackie Napper, a Louisville native, added a career-best 26 digs.
THE MARCH TO 210: THREE WINS AWAY
Tenth-year head coach Craig Skinner enters the weekend two wins shy of becoming the program’s all-time winningest coach. With a 208-86 record, he is second on UK’s all-time wins list, one behind Kathy DeBoer, who went 209-92 in nine seasons from 1984-92.
- Skinner won his 200th career match in a 3-0 win at Ole Miss on Nov. 17, 2013
- Skinner’s 200th career win was also UK’s 20th of the 2013 campaign, which marked the third consecutive 20-win season and sixth in the past seven years
- Kentucky has totaled 17 or more victories in all nine seasons of Skinner’s tenure, setting a program record for consecutive 17-win seasons, previously set from 1977-84 and again from 1987-93
|Click image for UK's Match Notes (PDF)|
No. 17 North Carolina is 4-1 on the year, with wins over Southern Illinois and Long Beach State and a loss to then-No. 11 Illinois to open the season. Last weekend, UNC posted wins at No. 14 Michigan State and Michigan. All five of the Tar Heels’ matches in 2014 have been 3-0 sweeps.
Lauren McAdoo leads UNC with 119 kills on .303 hitting, while Leigh Andrew has logged 114 kills, 40 digs and 17 blocks. Ece Taner leads the Tar Heels with 58 digs and six service aces, while setter Jordyn Schnable has 103 assists, six aces and 21 digs.
North Carolina is coached by Joe Sagula, in his 25th season. With a record of 502-293, he has led UNC to five ACC titles and 10 NCAA Tournament appearances.
UK is 11-4 all-time against UNC, including 2-1 in Chapel Hill. Kentucky prevailed for a 3-0 win in 2012, the first meeting between the two teams since 1994.
VCU enters the Carolina Classic with a 1-5 record. The Rams opened the year with losses at No. 18 Colorado State and vs. Marquette before a win over UC Santa Barbara. Last weekend, VCU lost to Virginia Tech and at Ohio, both by 3-0 margins, before a 3-2 loss to Texas A&M.
The Rams are led by Janelle Sykes’ 55 kills on .288 hitting with a team-best 23 blocks, while Kalah Jones has 51 kills and a team-high-tying four service aces. Cecilia Aragao has dished out 174 assists and 66 digs, second only to Mary Kilbane’s 78 digs.
Jody Rogers is in her second year as head coach and owns a 27-13 record. Rogers came to VCU after 16 seasons at Indianapolis, where she led IU to four consecutive top-15 Division II finishes.
The Wildcats are 3-0 all-time vs. VCU after a 3-2 win in Lexington last season. UK claimed a 3-0 win at home in 2010, while the two squads met on a neutral court in 1978 for a 2-0 Kentucky win.
SCOUTING GEORGIA SOUTHERN
Georgia Southern is 0-6 after opening the season with two road tournaments against four Power Conference schools. GSU lost to then-No. 10 Florida, Oklahoma and Idaho in Gainesville, Fla., to open the year, followed by losses to Pittsburgh, Colorado and Portland State in Boulder, Colo.
Jamie DeRatt’s 59 kills and five service aces and Kym Coley’s 58 kills and .389 hitting percentage lead the offensive attack for GSU. Avery Stephens leads the Eagles with 50 digs, followed by DeRatt’s 41, while Kat Minnerly has dished out 180 assists with 33 digs. Leah Joseph leads the squad with 13 blocks.
The Eagles are coached by Dustin Wood, in his second year at GSU. In his first season, GSU went 28-6 and won the Southern Conference regular season and tournament titles to earn an NCAA Tournament bid.
Saturday will be the first meeting between Kentucky and Georgia Southern on the volleyball court.
UP NEXT: VS. LIPSCOMB, XAVIER
Kentucky returns home to host Lipscomb on Sept. 18 and Xavier on Sept. 20, both at 7 p.m. ET in Memorial Coliseum. UK is 2-0 all-time against Lipscomb after a 3-0 road win last season and a 3-2 victory in Lexington in 2012. The Wildcats have never faced Xavier.
LAST TIME OUT: RECORDS FALL AS UK BEATS LOUISVILLE
In its first road match of the season, Kentucky beat in-state rival Louisville, 3-1 Tuesday. The win marked UK’s first victory at U of L since 1993 and the first during the Craig Skinner era.
Junior Shelby Workman erupted for a career-high 21 kills on a career-best .348 hitting percentage. She also turned in the first double-double of her career by chipping in with 12 digs. Thirteen of her 21 kills came in the third set, a program record in the 25-point rally scoring era.
Senior Jackie Napper, a Louisville native, logged a career-best 26 digs. Napper has totaled 10 or more digs in every match this season and has strung together 15 or more in five-straight matches.
Junior setter Morgan Bergren dished out 55 assists - the most in a four-set match in the 25-point rally scoring era - as she led UK to 67 kills on .285 hitting. The 67 kills mark a program record in a four set match in the rally scoring era. Bergren also added 11 digs for a double-double effort, her third of the season.
Sophomore outside hitter Anni Thomasson notched 14 kills and 13 digs for her fifth double-double and senior Lauren O’Conner was the final Wildcat to reach double-figures with 14 kills on .290 hitting and a season-high five digs.