By Mike Lehman, TTU Sports Information
COOKEVILLE, Tenn. – The Tennessee Tech volleyball team returns to the Eblen Center for a pair of Ohio Valley Conference matches with Southeast Missouri beginning Friday, Oct. 22 in a 6:00 p.m. CT tilt.
Saturday's contest is scheduled to begin at 7:00 p.m. following the Golden Eagle football game against Virginia-Lynchburg. Both matches are slated to appear on ESPN+ with Dylan Vazzano on the call.
Tech dropped a pair of road matches at Murray State last weekend, falling 3-0 and 3-1 to a hot Racers squad. The Golden Eagles continue their incredibly challenging schedule against the Redhawks, a stretch that has seen the purple and gold match-up with first-place Austin Peay, third-place Morehead state, an extremely talented Murray State squad, and now second-place Southeast Missouri. Tech will follow it up with a midweek tilt at Morehead and a weekend at fourth-place UT Martin.
Skylar Boom produced one of her most dominant weekends at the net as a Golden Eagles, racking up 14 total blocks in seven sets of action, a whopping 2.0 blocks per set. After registering six in the opening match with the Racers, she tied her career-high with eight rejections on Saturday.
Outside hitter Madolyn Isringhausen continues to pace the Golden Eagle offense, ranking sixth in the OVC with 3.36 kills per set and fifth in points per set (4.00). She also ranks 10th in service aces per set, totaling 21 for a mark of 0.28/set.
With 0.34 aces/set, libero McKenna Young ranks third in the league while leading the purple and gold. The Murfreesboro native also ranks seventh in the OVC with 4.03 digs per set, just shy of 300 total for the season.
Senior Ashley Hand continues to rank among the league's best setters, averaging the fourth-most assists per set at 9.88. In league play, she ratchets it up to the second-best mark, averaging 10.34 per. Hand ranks seventh in Tech history in career assists, needing 412 more to pass Jenny (Pruett) Turner for sixth.
Middle blocker Taylor Dorsey ranks fifth in the OVC with a team-high 1.07 blocks per set and fourth in attack percentage with a mark of .285. The junior sits just seven total blocks away from passing Bilyana Triko for fifth on Tech's all-time list. She also needs 31 block assists to move past Bonnie Zoss for fourth on the program's career charts.
SCOUTING THE REDHAWKS
(2021 record: 17-5, 8-2 OVC | Series Record: 13-43 | H: 9-16 | A: 2-23 | N: 2-4)
Southeast Missouri enters the weekend red hot after sweeping SIUE in a pair of 3-0 decisions in Cape Girardeau, Mo. last weekend. The Redhawks have won seven straight OVC matches, including weekend sweeps of Belmont and Eastern Illinois and a midweek road tilt at UT Martin. In those seven wins, SEMO has lost just a single set.
For the second time in as many weeks, Zoey Beasley was named the OVC Offensive Player of the Week after finishing with 42 kills on a .333 hitting percentage last week. She opened the week with a career-best matching 21 kills on a .388 in the Tuesday midweek matchup at UT Martin. Beasley then registered 12 kills on a .400 hitting clip in the opener with SIUE. She concluded the series against the Cougars with nine kills.
Claire Ochs led the Redhawks with 97 assists (9.7 assists/set) in the three wins last week. SEMO hit .243 over the three matches. Ochs opened the series with SIUE, tallying 33 assists and seven digs. She concluded the series with the Cougars with 30 assists and six digs. Ochs also finished the three-match week with 20 digs, two aces, three blocks, and 14 kills on a rate of .478.
Tara Beilsmith led the SEMO defense with 51 total digs (5.10 digs/set) last week, tallying 13 digs in each of the home matches with SIUE. Beilsmith also registered 15 assists (1.50 assists/set) and an ace over the three-match week.
Mackenzie Meehan led the SEMO defense with 14 total blocks over the three victories. She finished the series against SIUE with six blocks in the Saturday evening matchup. Meehan also totaled four kills and six digs during the three-match week.
The Golden Eagles play in three consecutive road matches, starting with a Wednesday match at Morehead State at 5:00 p.m. CT. Tech will follow it up with a 5:00 p.m. meeting at UT Martin on Friday and an 11:00 a.m. matinee against the Skyhawks on Saturday.
Photo by Jim Dillon