No. 16 Kentucky Returns Home for Final Home Matches
Nov. 17, 2011
LEXINGTON, Ky. - The 16th-ranked Kentucky volleyball team plays its final two regular season home matches against Southeastern Conference opponents LSU and Arkansas this weekend. The Wildcats will begin the weekend hosting LSU at 7 p.m. ET on Friday and conclude with Arkansas at 1:30 p.m. ET on Sunday in Memorial Coliseum.
|Kentucky vs. LSU
Fri., Nov. 18 - 7:00 p.m. ET
UK Match Notes
Kentucky enters this weekend's matches with a 24-4 overall record and a 15-2 standing in SEC play, along with an 8-0 record in league matches played at home. UK's first match of its final home stand is against SEC Western Division leader LSU who owns an 18-9 overall record and an 11-6 clip in league action.
Kentucky returned home from a thrilling five-set performance at Ole Miss in its last action. Seniors Becky Pavan and Ann Armes, junior Ashley Frazier and sophomore Whitney Billings made tremendous offensive efforts to help the Wildcats return with two victories in their final two-match road swing last week.
Billings achieved a season-high 17 kills against Ole Miss. Frazier followed with 16. Armes (13) and Pavan (11) were the other UK players to reach double-figures in the dramatic victory. Junior setter Christine Hartmann also made major contributions to the offensive effort with a career-high 59 assists, while leading Kentucky to a .297 hitting percentage.
Defensively, junior Stephanie Klefot achieved a match-high 28 digs followed by 14 from Billings and 10 from freshman Jackie Napper. Billings accomplished a double-double in consecutive matches for the second time this season in wins over Ole Miss and Alabama.
Klefot leads the Wildcats and the SEC in digs with 494 which ranks among Kentucky's top-10 all-time in a single season. Kentucky also leads the league in blocks with 2.48 per set after charting eight in a win over the Rebels.
The Tigers currently lead the SEC Western Division and are paced by 3.54 kills per set from Madie Jones. As a unit the Tigers post 13.90 kills per frame and defensively chart 2.10 blocks per set led by Desiree Elliott's 0.97.
Kentucky swept LSU in one of the team's more impressive offensive performances of the season in the squads' first matchup in Baton Rouge, La., in early October. UK struck for 48 kills on a .385 hitting percentage in the win.
Hartmann topped 40 assists for the third consecutive match with 41 dimes, while adding six kills of her own.
Freshman Lauren O'Conner led the offense with 13 kills on a career-best .545 hitting percentage. She posted 10 or more kills in back-to-back contests in wins over the Tigers and Arkansas.
Napper led a strong defensive effort with 10 digs in the win. It marked the first time in SEC play Napper has posted 10 or more scoops and marked the fifth time at that point in the season she had achieved the feat.
Frazier topped 10 or more kills for the third straight match with 10 in the win. Pavan chipped in with eight kills and six blocks. Billings continued to provide an exceptional all-around effort with six blocks, six kills and eight digs in the match.
Kentucky's Memorial Coliseum will play host to the NCAA Regionals Dec. 9-10. UK is one of four sites selected for Sweet 16 and Elite Eight matchups with one team advancing to the Final Four in San Antonio, Texas, from the Lexington Region. Opening night matches are scheduled for 5 and 7 p.m. ET. Saturday's final is set for a 4:30 p.m. ET first serve.
Tickets are now on sale through the UK Ticket Office. All-Session Tickets are reserved for all ages at $14. General Admission tickets for adults are priced at $12 and students or seniors' general admission is slated for $8.
Single session tickets are priced at $8 for reserved for all ages. General admission for adults is priced at $7, with students and seniors priced at $5. Youth single session tickets are $4.
For tickets or more information feel free to call, 1-800-928-CATS.
Visit UKathletics.com for the most up-to-date information on the UK volleyball team and all of Kentucky's 22 teams.