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Murray State, Austin Peay Preview

Murray State, Austin Peay Preview

NASHVILLE, Tenn. –Belmont Volleyball breaks up its homestand with a pair of OVC contests on the road this weekend. The Bruins (2-19, 1-5 OVC) travel to Murray State (10-8, 4-2 OVC) on Friday evening before wrapping the swing with a stop at in-state rival Austin Peay (5-15, 3-3 OVC) on Saturday afternoon.

Murray State has split its last four outings to stand at 10-8 overall and 4-2 in conference play. The Racers are led in kills by Rachel Giustino, who has recorded 367. Ashley McBee leads the team in assists with a total of 682 while Becca Fernandez has tallied 291 digs to lead the team in the category. Giustino has also posted 16 service aces.

MSU leads the all-time series, 10-4, and have won the last three meetings between the programs.

The Governors will be looking to snap a two-match skid with this weekend's OVC matches. The recent losses put Austin Peay at 5-15 overall and 3-3 in league play. Brooke Moore leads APSU in kills with a total of 244. Caroline Waite leads the team in assists with a total of 398 while Ginny Gerig has posted 345 digs to lead the team. Karli Graham has notched a team-leading 12 solo blocks.

BU narrowly leads the all-time series, 13-11. Belmont has won one of the last 14 meetings between the programs.

Junior Halee Van Poppel (Argyle, Texas) leads the Bruins in kills, tallying 234.  Leading the team in assists is junior Akia Warrior (Fort Worth, Texas), after recording 417. A trio of Bruins are splitting dig duty led by sophomore Peyton Kelley (Normal, Ill.) with 175, followed by Van Poppel with 163. Freshman Kailee Bass (Aurora, Ill.) has also notched a team-high eight solo blocks and a team-leading 54 block assists. Sophomore Mary Catherine Ball (Hendersonville, N.C.) has tallied 43 block assists.

Several Bruins are making statistical waves among all NCAA Division I players and in the Ohio Valley Conference as of October 13. Nationally, Bass is ranked 188th in total blocks while Van Poppel is ranked 73rd in total attacks, 99th in total kills, 115th in points and 148th in attacks per set.

In the OVC, Bass is tied for ninth in blocks.  Van Poppel comes in at seventh in kills in the league and ninth in the conference in points. Warrior is ranked ninth in assists, followed by sophomore Carly Mason (Forsyth, Ill.) in 10th. Mason is also ranked seventh in service aces.

Friday's match at Murray State is set to begin at 6 p.m. CT while Saturday's contest at Austin Peay has first serve at 2 p.m. Both matches will have live stats available and both contests can be seen live on ESPN+. Fans may also follow the team's Twitter account (@BelmontVB) for live, in-game updates.

 

Belmont Volleyball at Murray State, Austin Peay Match Notes (.pdf)