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September 10, 2008

Golden Eagle Volleyball looks to rebound at Western Kentucky Classic

COOKEVILLE, Tenn. - The Tennessee Tech Volleyball team will face come of the best competition in the country when they travel to Bowling Green, Ky. this weekend for the Western Kentucky Classic. Two teams in the tournament have received votes in the most recent AVCA poll.

Tech (2-4) defeated Ball State last weekend while at the Active Ankle Challenge.
AGAINST VALPO - Tech looks to take the series lead from the Crusaders after their match this weekend. The Golden Eagles are 1-1 all-time with the most recent match coming in the 1991 season when Tech fell, 3-0. Two years previous Tech was the one who came away with the sweep, 3-0. Valpariaso is led by Angie Porche who has hit for 118 kills this season with a .273 hitting percentage. She has also second on the Crusaders lineup with 63 digs. Last weekend Valpariaso went 2-1 with wins over Louisville and Wake Forest after falling to Indiana. Porche had 23 kills in the five set win over Louisville.

AGAINST MIAMI (OHIO) - The Redhawks have defeated the Golden Eagles twice before leading the series between the two schools, 2-0. The last time the two schools met, the year was 1997 as Tech fell 3-0. The Redhawks are 4-2 on the season thus far as they went 3-0 last weekend with wins over Cal State-Fullerton, Wisconsin and UNLV. Four players for Miami (Ohio) have already reached 50+ kills with Emily Schroeder leading the way with 68 on a .227 hitting. Last weekend Schroeder had 35 kills in 10 sets for 3.5 per set.

MIAMI (OHIO) SIDE-NOTE - When Tech takes on Miami (Ohio) they will also take on a former Golden Eagle volleyball coach. Jennie Gilbert was the Tech volleyball coach from 1994-2002 and led the team to the 1997 OVC tournament championship. She ranks second in coaching wins with 126. Gilbert is the current Assistant Athletics Director and Senior Women's Administrator at Miami (Ohio).

"I am excited that we get to play Tech," Gilbert said. "I think it will be great competition for both teams and I wish both teams the best of luck in the tournament."

AGAINST FURMAN - With the all-time series knotted up at one match a piece, the tie will be broken. Tech's win against the Paladins came in 1991 with Furman's win coming just three years later. Furman comes into the WKU tournament with a 4-3 record after claiming the title at Belmont tournament with wins over IPFW, Belmont and OVC foe Murray State. Against Murray, the Paladins held the Racers to a .092 hitting in the three set match. Katherine Hall currently leads Furman with 74 kills through their first seven matches. Defensively Alson West has collected 72 digs and 22 blocks, with seven solos thus far.

AGAINST WESTERN KENTUCKY - Tech hasn't played Western Kentucky since 2005 when the Hilltoppers defeated coach Blair's team 3-0. Overall, WKU owns a 15-7 record against Tech dating back to when Western Kentucky was a member of the OVC. WKU remains undefeated at 6-0 winning the Alabama Crimson Tide tournament.