comscore script

UA volleyball opens SEC play with Ole Miss Friday

BY ANDRES FOCIL
UA volleyball opens SEC play with Ole Miss Friday

FAYETTEVILLE — The University of Arkansas volleyball team opens Southeastern Conference play Friday hosting Ole Miss in a 7:00 p.m. match in Barnhill Arena. Arkansas, 6-4, opened the season on fire running off a 6-1 record to start the year, but the young team stumbled last weekend. Head coach Chris Poole is hoping the hometown crowd will re-energize the young team. "I’m very excited about playing at home," said Poole. "I think it’s important to play at home particularly with a young team and particularly with players who are struggling with their consistency. They play so much on emotion and having that home crowd advantage can really help swing momentum. The crowd can get young players to push to another level of play and that will help us be successful." Arkansas opens the SEC season hosting Ole Miss (10-2, 0-1 SEC) Friday. The Lady Rebels sat atop the SEC standings with a 10-1 mark until No. 22 LSU handed them a 3-0 loss in mid-week play. LSU is Arkansas’ Sunday afternoon opponent. Senior Jessica Dorrell is a bright spot for the Arkansas offense. Dorrell is the team leader in kills this season, earning all-tournament team honors (twice MVP) in all three tournaments this year. The Aledo, Texas, native leads the team with 168 kills this year and a 4.42 kill per game average. She is hitting .299 in the first 10 matches. Dorrell is also fast-approaching the 1,000-kill plateau entering this weekend’s play with 971 career kills. "Jessica’s done everything that we have asked of her," said Poole. "She’s really elevated her level of play and become a good leader on and off the court." Junior Christina Lawrence also became a statistical go-to player. Lawrence is second on the team with 109 kills and a .311 hitting percentage. Freshman Sarah Freudenrich was called upon to step in and step up early. She leads the team with a .339 hitting percentage and 51 blocks for a 1.34 block-per-game mark. Arkansas faces the two leading teams in the SEC Western Division this weekend and the schedule doesn’t get any easier for the Lady’Backs. Arkansas travels to Mississippi State, Alabama, Kentucky and Tennessee in the coming weeks with four in a row on the road. For more information about Arkansas volleyball, log on to LADYBACKS.COM.



Sports Category : Volleyball (W)