Nov. 9, 2011
By Bill Ford
CARBONDALE, Ill. — The Southern Illnois volleyball team embarks on its final road swing of the regular season Friday and Saturday as the Salukis travel to Wichita State and Missouri State.
Southern Illinois Salukis (9-14, 3-11 MVC)
Head Coach: Brenda Winkeler, Seventh Year (176-175 overall, 94-103 at SIU)
Wichita State Shockers (15-9, 9-5 MVC)
Head Coach: Chris Lamb, 12th Year (255-110 overall and at WSU)
Missouri State (18-7, 11-3 MVC)
Head Coach: Melissa Stokes, 16th Year (335-155 overall and at MSU)
SIU VS. WICHITA STATE
SIU trails its all-time series with WSU 18-32 and the Shockers have won the last 19 meetings between the two schools. SIU’s last win over WSU was a four-set win in Wichita during the 2002 season. The Shockers boast the top team hitting percentage in the MVC at .264. MSU is led by the attacking duo of junior outside hitter Emily Adney and senior outside Camri Zwiesler, who average 3.20 and 3.02 kills per set respectively. Senior setter MayElizabeth Hooper averages 10.05 assists per set and senior libero Sarah Waldorf ranks second in the MVC with an average of 4.92 digs per set.
LEADING THE SALUKIS
The Saluki offense is led by a trio of attackers that each average more than two kills per set. Sophomore outside hitter Jessica Whitehead ranks third in the MVC with a season average of 3.45 kills per set while junior outside Laura Thole is fifth in the league at 3.20 kills per set. Junior middle blocker Alysia Mayes rounds out Southern’s top attackers with an average of 2.71 kills per set with a .354 hitting percentage that ranks third in the MVC and 46th nationally. Junior setter Rachael Brown ranks fouirth in the Valley with an average of 10.01 assists per set. The Salukis have three players averaging more than 2.90 digs per set, led by junior libero Bailey Yeager’s 4.02 per set, which ranks eighth in the MVC. Thole is second on the team with an average of 2.96 digs per set and Brown is third at 2.91.
RECAPPING LAST WEEK
Southern extended its losing streak to eight matches with four-set losses to Illinois State and Indiana State Friday and Saturday at Davies Gym. The Salukis posted a season-high 16 team blocks and had three players tally double-digit kill totals against the Redbirds, but couldn’t take advantage. Jessica Whitehead lead Southern with 16 kills while Laura Thole added 14 kills and 11 digs and Alysia Mayes posted 10 kills and a career-best eight total blocks. Rachael Brown also tallied a double-double with 42 assists and 11 digs while Bailey Yeager led the defense with 19 digs. Against Indiana State, Mayes and Thole led the SIU attack with 12 kills apiece while Brown had another double-double with 50 assists and 13 digs. Yeager tied a career best with 27 digs in the match to lead the defense.
MAYES MOVES IN
Junior middle blocker Alysia Mayes entered the SIU record book for career solo blocks after tallying four in two matches last week. Mayes now sits tied for 10th in SIU history with 71 career solo blocks. She shares the spot with former Saluki Lindsey Schultz (1999-02). Mayes posted a career-best eight total blocks Friday against Illinois State.