UK Looks to Extend Winning Streak
Sept. 20, 2008
UK hosts Mississippi State for the second of its two-match home stand to open conference play Sunday at 1:30 in Memorial Coliseum.
In the midst of a seven-match winning streak, the Kentucky Wildcats opened SEC action with a dominating performance over Alabama. UK swept the visiting Crimson Tide, 3-0, Friday night to extend their unbeaten streak to the longest run under Head Coach
Craig Skinner. Sophomores Sarah Mendoza and Lauren Rapp led the Cats in the stats column. Mendoza tallied 13 kills and 14 digs, while Rapp led UK with 11 kills and 15.5 points. Senior Queen Nzenwa was an emotional leader for the Blue and White sparking the team to their first set 30-28 win. Nzenwa added six kills and a team-high six blocks.
The Wildcats own an all-time 34-1 record over the Bulldogs, and have not lost since 1994. Mississippi State opened SEC play at Tennessee on Friday night and fell in three sets.
Mississippi State struggled in the pre-conference slate running up a 5-6 record. The Bulldogs are led by Ioana Demian and Cristina Jucan who both average over 2.50 kills per set. Two players also contribute to the passing on offense as Grace Hoyt and Dorey Gray tally around five assists a set. Defensivley three players for the Bulldogs average over two digs per set and Ashley Newsome leads the blocking efforts with 1.20 rejections per frame.
Mississippi State's sophomore setter Kaitlin Wheatley is a Lexington, Ky. native. Wheatley attended Lafayette High School where she was a four-year letterwinner. She paced LHS in assists and service aces and helped lead the Generals to a 42-3 record and final four finish in the 2006 Kentucky High School Athletic Association state championship tournament. She also played four seasons of club volleyball with the Bluegrass Area Volleyball Association.
The match will be aired live on CWKYT-Channel 5 in Lexington. Dick Gabriel and former Kentucky coach Kathy DeBoer will be on the call.
For fans outside of the viewing area, live stats will be available at UKathletics.com, as well as a complete recap following the action.