NASHVILLE, Tenn. – After three matches on the road, Belmont Volleyball will host its first home Ohio Valley Conference matchup this weekend. The Bruins (1-17, 0-3 OVC) will host Eastern Illinois (1-15, 0-2 OVC) Saturday in the Curb Event Center.
EIU makes a trip to Nashville looking to snap a four-match skid. The recent losses have moved the Panthers to 1-15 overall and 0-2 in OVC play. Eastern Illinois is led in kills by Maggie Runge, who has tallied 133. She is followed by Laurel Bailey and Ireland Heib, who have both recorded 129 each. Bailey Chandler leads the team in assists with a total of 499 while Madison Cunningham leads the team in digs with a total of 267. Runge also leads the team in solo blocks after collecting 10.
BU leads the all-time series, 8-1. Belmont has won three of the last four annual meetings between the programs.
Junior Halee Van Poppel (Argyle, Texas) leads the Bruins in kills, tallying 214. Leading the team in assists is junior Akia Warrior (Fort Worth, Texas), after recording 406. A trio of Bruins are splitting dig duty led by Van Poppel with 146, followed by sophomore Peyton Kelley (Normal, Ill.) with 137, and classmate Faith Cobaugh (Union, Ky.) with 120. Freshman Kailee Bass (Aurora, Ill.) has also notched seven solo blocks and a team-leading 54 block assists.
Several Bruins are making statistical waves among all NCAA Division I players and in the Ohio Valley Conference as of October 2. Nationally, Bass is ranked 64th in total blocks and 249th in blocks per set while Van Poppel is ranked 59th in total attacks, 79th in total kills and 93rd in points.
In the OVC, Bass is tied for seventh in blocks. Van Poppel comes in at seventh in kills in the league and eighth in the conference in points. Warrior is ranked ninth in assists in the OVC.
Saturday's matchup is set to begin at 2 p.m. The match will have live stats available and can be seen live on ESPN+. Fans may also follow the team's Twitter account (@BelmontVB) for live, in-game updates.