Volleyball Preps For North-South Challenge
North Carolina A&T (5-8) in the North-South Challenge
Date(s): Sept 22, 2017 vs. Maryland Eastern Shore (11-4); Sept 23, 2017 vs. Hampton (2-11); Sept 23, 2017 vs. Norfolk State (2-8)
Time(s): 4:30 p.m., 11 a.m., 4 p.m.
Facility: Holland Hall (Hampton, Va.) and Tidewater Volleyball Center (Virginia Beach, Va.)
Aggies Overview: N.C. A&T competes in the North-South Challenge hosted by Norfolk State featuring six Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC) volleyball teams. The Aggies face Maryland Eastern Shore 4:30 p.m., Friday, Sept. 22 at Holland Hall on the campus of Hampton University. Saturday’s matches will be held at the Tidewater Volleyball Center with N.C. A&T taking on Hampton at 11 a.m., followed by Norfolk State at 4 p.m. Earlier in the week the Aggies went to East Carolina and lost 3-0 in Minges Coliseum.
Last Time Out: N.C. A&T connected on 26 total kills with a match-high 11 occurring in the opening set on Tuesday at ECU. The Aggies went down in straight sets (25-19, 15, 16) but were led by senior Alyssa Pitt, who registered seven kills on a .286 hitting percentage. Freshman Courteney Pitt added six kills with a block while senior Jasmine Lindor had five kills and a pair of service aces. Freshman Edie Brewer finished with 17 assists, seven digs and two service aces. Defensively, freshman Milanna Morgan led with eight digs and senior Samara Brown had five digs with three kills. The Aggies remain as the top squad amongst the MEAC Southern Division with a .385-win percentage, despite dropping their last two matches. N.C. A&T ranks second in the MEAC in both service aces per set (1.82) and opponent hitting percentage (.172). They are fourth in hitting percentage (.157) and rank sixth in assists per set (9.44), kills per set (10.33) and blocks per set (1.82). Individually, Edie Brewer has the second highest service aces per set average (0.51) in the conference while ranking ninth in assist per set (6.00). Jasmine Lindor is third in hitting percentage (.296) and fifth in blocks per set (0.89). The third Aggie in the conference rankings is Alyssa Pitt sitting eighth in hitting percentage (.262).
Maryland Eastern Shore Hawks Overview: The Hawks (11-4) are 4-1 in their last five matches including a 3-0 road victory at George Washington on Monday. MDES is the top team in the MEAC Northern Division with a .733-win percentage. The Hawks are 6-1 at neutral sites. The Hawks average 12.2 kills, 2.1 aces, 12.3 digs, 2.2 blocks per set and hit .271 as a team. Three are averaging over two kills per set led by sophomore Iva Vujosevic’s 3.35. Junior Lucia Babic follows with 2.96 and junior Rachel Kayongo averages 2.41. Ivana Blazevic leads the conference in service aces, averaging 0.59 per set and is third in assists per set (9.06). Senior Mere Serea is the conference leader in average blocks per set at 1.15, while senior Maja Jankovic is the team-leader in digs averaging 3.40.
Hampton Pirates Overview: Hampton (2-11) has a pair of wins in their last six matches after beginning the year with seven consecutive defeats. The Pirates are averaging 9.8 kills, 1.0 aces, 10.6 digs and 1.8 blocks per set with a .110 hitting percentage. Junior Reeana Richardson ranks seventh in the conference in kills per set (3.0). Freshman Lena Reed-Petracek sets the team with 5.28 assists per set while freshman Maja Petronijevic averages 2.87 digs. Junior Kyndall Nicholas ranks second in the MEAC in blocks (1.06).
Norfolk State Spartans Overview: Norfolk State (2-8) went 0-3 at the Red Flash Classic hosted by St. Francis (Pa.) last weekend. The Spartans dropped their last five matches and averaged 10.1 kills, 1.2 aces, 12.8 digs and 1.7 blocks per set with a .112 hitting percentage. Freshman Taylor Eichelberger has a team-high 2.38 kills per set. Sophomore Jill Aquino averages 5.70 assists while senior Melvina Brown is second in the conference in digs (4.47) and seventh in service aces (0.32). Freshman Ciara Kick is sixth in both hitting percentage (.286) and blocks per set (0.85).
Up Next: The Aggies open MEAC play on Tuesday at McDougald-McLendon Arena as they take on rival N.C. Central at 6 p.m.
News & Notes
- Aggies coach Hal Clifton has compiled a 3-7 record vs. MDES (0-3), Hampton (1-0) and NSU (2-4).
- Competing at a neutral site in 2017, N.C. A&T has a 4-1 record with wins over Alabama A&M, Grambling State, Jacksonville State and Alcorn State.
- Alyssa Pitt has more than 100 kills this season with a team-best 104 averaging with an average of 2.31.
- Courteney Pitt jumped to the second leading attacker after averaging 1.62 kills per set over the last four matches
- Edie Brewer ranks 27th nationally in aces per set (0.51) and 23rd in service aces (23). Brewer leads her squad in both assists (270) and service aces while ranking second on the team in digs (100).
- Milanna Morgan averages 2.78 digs per set totaling 103 digs.
- Camille Uadiale has a team-high 11 solo blocks and is second in total blocks with 28.
- N.C. A&T is undefeated (5-0) when they post higher hitting percentages, kills, assists, service aces, and digs than their opponent.