#17 Kentucky Hosts Tennessee on Senior Day
Nov. 26, 2008
LEXINGTON, Ky. - The No. 17 University of Kentucky volleyball team hosts Tennessee for the final regular season match-up of the 2008 campaign Friday night, at 7 p.m. Kentucky will hold senior day ceremonies for Queen Nzenwa and Alisa Pierce upon the conclusion of the match.
Kentucky faces Tennessee with the hopes of an SEC crown in sight. With a win against the Lady Vols, UK will gain at least a share of the 2008 conference title. Kentucky has claimed the last five meetings between the border-state rivals.
Earlier this week freshman Becky Pavan was tabbed the Southeastern Conference's Freshman Player of the Week for the second consecutive week. She led UK to a sweep of Auburn for their 26th victory of the season, the sixth most wins in school history. Pavan was a match-changer at the net for the Blue and White leading them with seven total blocks for a blistering 2.33 blocks per set average. She was equally dominating on the offensive side powering her way to seven kills on a team-best .462 hitting percentage. Pavan led UK with 3.83 points per set for the week.
With her five block assists against Auburn, she has moved into UK's top-10 for block assists in a season with 130 on the year. For the season, Pavan leads UK and ranks among the leaders in the SEC with 1.21 blocks per set.
Pierce has seen action in 344 sets and over 100 matches during her four-year career. As a junior she tallied a career-high 23 digs in a win over Northern Iowa. She has posted matches with 10 or more digs 40 times in her career while helping UK to four consecutive winning seasons.
Nzenwa became UK's first All-America selection in nearly 15 seasons in her junior campaign. She holds UK's record and ranks fifth all-time in the SEC with 547 block assists. She is a three-time All-SEC selection and ranks among Kentucky's career leaders in kills, attack percentage and sets played.
In the last meeting with the Volunteers, UK earned its fifth straight win in the SEC, a 3-1 victory in October. It was the best start in SEC play since 1988 for the Cats. Junior Sarah Rumely tallied the 23rd double-double effort of her career to pace the Wildcats. She charted 40 assists and a career-high 23 digs on the night. Pavan became the first player since Nzenwa in November of last season to tally 10 or more blocks. The first-year player accounted for 10 of UK's 15 blocks on the night.Leading the way offensively were three players who reached double-figure kill efforts. Nzenwa and sophomore Sarah Mendoza led the way with 13 kills apiece. Sophomore Lauren Rapp added 11, with freshman Ann Armes adding eight. Pavan and Rumely each accounted for four each. Defensively, six players tallied a block. Pavan led the way with nine, and Rapp was one shy of tying a career-high with seven. Rumely led three players with double-figure digs. Junior BriAnne Sauer notched 12, and sophomore Laura Stokowski pitched in with a career-high 11. Kentucky's winning streak over Tennessee now moves to five straight, dating back to an upset victory in 2006.
Admission to the match is free, and parking is available in the E lots and R-1 lot surrounding Memorial Coliseum due to the Thanksgiving holiday.
Live video streaming and live stats are available at UKathletics.com. A complete recap of the match will be available at UK's official homepage upon completion of action.