UK Looks to Keep Streak Alive on the Road
Sept. 25, 2008
LEXINGTON, Ky. - The Kentucky Wildcats hit the road for the first time in SEC action this weekend taking on Georgia and LSU. Match time with Georgia kicks off at 7 p.m. on Friday, with the Sunday match against LSU taking place at 2:30 p.m.
UK opened conference play with 3-0 sweeps of both Alabama and Mississippi State. It was the first time UK had opening weekend sweeps in SEC play since 1989. Additionally, Kentucky is in the midst of an eight-match winning streak--the longest string of victories since 1993. Sophomore Sarah Mendoza has been the UK stalwart from the back-row leading the team in kills per set and points in conference play. For her efforts against Alabama and Mississippi State, she was honored as the SEC Offensive player of the week.
Junior BriAnne Sauer has been steady leading the team in digs all season long. She tallied 23 against Alabama--which was a career-high for a three set match. Senior Queen Nzenwa as always is a force to be reckoned with at the net. The all-time leader in block assists at Kentucky her presence was felt at all times in leading UK's blocking efforts. She averaged 1.50 blocks per set in UK's two wins.
The Bulldogs enter the match with UK holding a 7-6, 0-2 record. They are 3-1 at home and opened SEC play on the road at South Carolina and Florida losing to both team by a 3-0 margin. The Bulldogs are led by Maria Taylor's 4.06 kills per set. Kathleen Gates dishes out 10.06 assists per frame, while two players record over three digs per set. UGA out blocks their opponents 2.13-1.98 per stanza.
Kentucky holds an all-time record of 28-24 over Georgia and has won the last five matches between the two schools. Kentucky has taken the matches by scores of either 3-1 or 3-0 the last three seasons under Craig Skinner.
LSU enters the weekend with a 5-4, 0-2 clip although they have faced some stiff competition in hostile places while not having a home match yet. The Tigers have seen the likes of #2 Nebraska and their 13,000 rowdy fans. Kyna Washington paces the squad with 3.39 kills per set, but the Tigers are only hitting at a .182 percentage. Two players have over five assists per frame, while Elena Martinez averages 3.83 scoops per set. LSU's blocking has kept them in matches however, as they average 2.18 blocks per set.
UK also holds a winning 24-19 overall record over the Tigers. The two teams split a year-ago, which included Kentucky's dramatic 3-2 upset of the ranked LSU team. Prior to last season's win in October; the Tigers had won the previous three meetings.
LSU head coach Flan Flory is a former Kentucky coach. Flory coached at UK from 1993-97 and held a 78-80 record while with the Cats. She posted 29 wins in her first year which was the most at UK since 1987, and the 13 conference victories is a record that still stands today.
Complete coverage and up-to-date news on the UK volleyball team can be found at UKathletics.com.