No. 10 Kentucky Set to Host Auburn Friday
Oct. 8, 2009
LEXINGTON, Ky. - Friday night the 10th-ranked Kentucky volleyball team returns home to Memorial Coliseum to host Auburn in a 7 p.m. tilt. UK (15-1, 5-0) is coming off a pair of historic road victories a week ago and will return home for the first time in two weeks.
Head coach Craig Skinner is in search of his 100th career victory Friday night, as his record currently stands at 99-41. The fifth-year head coach has continued to lead the Wildcats to new heights as the squad achieved its first top-10 national ranking during Skinner's tenure this week.
Junior Sarah Mendoza won SEC Offensive Player of the Week honors after posting back-to-back 20+ kill efforts in Kentucky's two victories a week ago. Mendoza averages over four kills per set and leads the UK offense that ranks among the top-10 in the country.
In the Wildcats' win over South Carolina several Wildcats turned in record-breaking performances. Senior setter Sarah Rumely dished out 51 assists to move into sole possession of second place in Kentucky's all-time career assist chart. Sophomore Becky Pavan had a career-high 15 kills in the win, while junior Mendoza turned in the first back-to-back 20+ kills of her career.
Prior to that victory Kentucky leaned on sophomore Gretchen Giesler's career day in giving Kentucky its first road win over Florida in 20 years. Giesler secured her career-best kill performance with 11 hammers in the win. It was the first home loss for the Gators since 2004, and only the second home conference loss in Mary Wise's storied career.
Up first this weekend for Kentucky is Auburn, a team that hauled in the SEC's second-best recruiting class for 2009. Katherine Culwell leads the first-year group with 2.12 kills per frame and 2.46 digs per set. Culwell has twice been named the SEC Freshman of the Week. However, it is the ever-steady libero, Liz Crouch, who really anchors the Tigers (11-5, 3-2). Crouch averages 4.11 digs per set to rank among the leaders in the SEC.
Stay tuned to UKathletics.com for the most up-to-date news, highlights and features from the Kentucky volleyball team.