By Jonathan Caudle, TTU Sports Information
COOKEVILLE, TENN. – Tennessee Tech volleyball will embark on its final road trip of the regular season this weekend as the team travels to east Kentucky to take on Morehead State on Friday, November 8 and Eastern Kentucky on Saturday, November 9.
The Golden Eagles are coming off a week in which Tech fell in a pair of contests against Jacksonville State and UT Martin.
- Ali Verzani led the Golden Eagles this weekend against Jacksonville State and UT Martin, collecting 35 kills, four blocks, two assists, and a pair of service aces, while hitting .158 over the two contests.
- Verzani's 18 kills and 13 digs against the Skyhawks marked her 14th double-double of the season.
- Taylor Dorsey earned a team-high nine blocks, which included a match-high seven during the Golden Eagles match against Jacksonville State.
- Verzani ranks third in the OVC in points with 377.5 on the season.
- Dorsey ranks second in the OVC in total blocks, surpassing the 100-block mark with 100 even, and blocks per set, averaging 1.1 per frame this season.
- Sophomore Ashley Hand dished out 78 assists over the weekend, which included 41 against Jacksonville State and 37 against UT Martin.
- Hand ranks third in the OVC in total assists, earning 906 so far this season.
- Hand added a team-high 13 digs against Jacksonville State, marking her 12th double-double of the season.
- Carly Skrabak led the Golden Eagles back row this weekend, tallying a team-high 22 digs over the two contests.
SCOUTING THE EAGLES
2019 Record: 19-6, 10-2 OVC | Series Record: 19-69
Morehead State is currently on a five-game winning streak after having earned three sweeps over UT Martin, Eastern Illinois, and Belmont, as well as a four-set victory over Tennessee State and a five-set slugfest against SIUE.
As a team, the Eagles are hitting .226 on the season. Four Eagles have tallied triple-digit kills this season, with Olivia Lohmeier, Lauren Rokey, and Mia Swearingen leading the way for Morehead State with 441, 271, 217 kills, respectively. Bridget Bessler has dished out a team-leading 851 assists so far this season for the Eagles. Allison Whitten anchors the Eagles back row this season as she leads the team with 418 digs. At the net, Mia Swearingen has recorded a team-leading 85 blocks on the season, 15 of which were solo.
The Eagles lead the Golden Eagles in their all-time series lead, 69-19. Earlier this season, Morehead State earned a 3-1 victory over Tech, but the Golden Eagles will look to even the 2019 series this weekend.
SCOUTING THE COLONELS
2019 Record: 9-17, 4-8 OVC | Series Record: 21-62
Eastern Kentucky enters the weekend with a 9-17 overall record and 4-8 in league play. The Colonels are coming off a 1-1 weekend in which they opened the weekend with a sweep of Belmont, before falling in a three-set contest against Tennessee State.
Abby Noll leads the Colonels offensively, averaging 3.88 kills per set with 326 on the season. Rachel Woody has dished out a team-leading 577 assists (8.24 per set), while helping Eastern Kentucky to a .147 hitting clip so far this season. Five Colonels have recorded triple-digit digs this season, with Dena Tekavec nearing the 400-dig mark with 396 (4.60 per set) this season.
Eastern Kentucky holds the all-time series lead over the Golden Eagles, 62-21. However, Tech earned a five-set home victory over the Colonels earlier this season and will look to secure the season sweep in Richmond, Ky.
Tech closes out the regular season next weekend as they host Tennessee State and Belmont on Friday, November 15 and Saturday, November 16.
Photo by Thomas Corhern