September 26, 2013

Volleyball prepares for Wingate and Coker this weekend

JEFFERSON CITY, Tenn. – After dropping a pair of matches on the road last weekend, the Carson-Newman Eagles (6-5, 1-3) will travel to Wingate and Coker looking to get back on track.

Carson-Newman took the first two sets from Newberry last Friday before the Wolves won the final three games to defeat the Eagles. Junior outside hitter Rachel Harper (Chattanooga, Tenn.) recorded her seventh double-double of the year racking up 21 kills with 16 digs.

Anderson swept Carson-Newman on Saturday despite the team registering 56 digs including ten from freshman libero Taylor Lowe (Franklin, Tenn.) and junior outside hitter Lauren Santarelli (Colorado Springs, Colo.).

"We were dismayed on Saturday morning to turn around and have to play again," head coach Shannon Mincey said. "Our focus this week has been to just regroup and get things back together."

Harper leads the South Atlantic Conference in kills (148), is second in kills per set (3.79) and is third in service aces per set (0.51).

Junior setter Kristen Pickett (Cleveland, Tenn.) ranks fifth in the SAC in assists per set with an 8.48 average.

As a team, Carson-Newman has 80 service aces, tops in the conference, and is fourth in the SAC with a .197 hitting percentage.

The Wingate Bulldogs (8-2, 4-0) await the Eagles Friday night at 7 p.m. Wingate currently sits at No. 14 in the most recent AVCA top 25 poll, matching the program's best mark set in November 2011.

"Wingate is a very strong team," Mincey said. "They are very consistent. They don't make a lot of unforced errors. I don't think we are going to be able to beat them by doing what they do. We have to play our game and work on what we have been working on."

As a team, Wingate leads the SAC in hitting percentage (.229), including a .260 clip in conference games and blocks (92).

The lone team left in the SAC without a conference loss is led by 2012 AVCA All-America right side Anna Hilton. As the reigning SAC Player of the Year, Hilton leads the team in kills per set (3.29) and hitting percentage (.329).

All-SAC selection Lexi Potter is second in the in the conference with an impressive .373 hitting percentage and 0.97 blocks per set. Her teammate, Allison Rickher, leads the SAC in blocks per set with 1.04.

Preseason All-SAC second team selection Alison Cooke is pacing the league with 10.26 assists per set.

The Eagles make a quick turnaround with a 1 p.m. first serve against Coker on Saturday.

The Coker Cobras (3-9, 0-4) are one of two teams that have yet to earn a victory in conference play and currently have the worst overall winning percentage (.250) in the SAC.

Led by first year head coach Allison Stack, Coker is hitting a league-worst .100 averaging just 9.78 kills per set, the lone squad that does not put up at least double-digit kills per set.

The Cobras are led by senior right side hitter Taylor Willis, who leads the team in kills per set (3.82), is second in hitting percentage (.250) and is third in blocks (10).

For additional coverage, follow @CNathletics on Twitter or visit cneagles.com.