Quinnipiac University Bobcats (2-10, 0-1 MAAC) vs
Hartford Hawks (5-10, 0-0 America East)
Wednesday, September 25, 2013 – 7:00 PM
Burt Kahn Court – Hamden, Conn.
It's a Volleyball Night in Hamden
After a strong showing in their MAAC debut, the Quinnipiac women's volleyball team will now take on the America East's Hartford Hawks in a Wednesday night home showdown. The Bobcats played extremely well in spurts Saturday against the reigning MAAC Champions as Quinnipiac went down two sets early but picked up a thrilling third set victory before ultimately falling, 3-1. The set win was the first all-time for the Bobcats over the Stags and a good stepping stone for the remainder of the conference slate.
All-Time Record Against Hartford
These two squads have a series history that dates back to 1999 as Hartford and the Bobcats will be meeting for the 14th time in their program history. Quinnipiac will need to overcome their past struggles however, as they come in with a 1-12 all-time mark playing the Hawks. The lone Bobcat victory did come fairly recently back on Sept. 11, 2010 with a dominating 3-0 victory at home.
Scouting the Hawks
Picked the finish sixth out of eight teams in the America East Preseason Coaches' Poll, Hartford has certainly proved they can compete through 15 matches this season. The Hawks come into Wednesday's match with a 5-10 overall record but are coming off their most successful week of the season. They went 3-1 last week with victories over Bryant, Fordham and NJIT and are looking to extend their two-match winning streak. Junior setter Jackie Tamburri scored the Hawks' first weekly accolade when she was named Setter of the Week by the America East Conference. She earned an All-Tournament distinction at the CCSU Blue Devils Invitational after helping lead the Hawks to the pair of victories. For the week, Tamburri finished with 151 assists and enters the non-conference affair with 477 assists through 15 matches. Benefitting most from Tamburri's ball handling is Corinne Horanzy with a team-high 116 kills and Dionna Kirton also comes in with 98 kills. The defensive back line is clearly the team' strength as they are out-digging their opponents with 727 digs compared to 671 for their opponents. Hartford comes in with four players all with at least 116 digs so the Bobcats will have their work cut out for them trying to get a kill by this defensive-oriented Hawk team.
Serving up Aces
One of the strongest areas of the new Bobcat squad has been their imposing play at the service line. Quinnipiac dominated reigning MAAC Champion Fairfield from the service line at 13-2 for the match. The Bobcats enter Wednesday's match with 65 aces on the season for a 1.55 per set average. The number is good for third-best in the MAAC while three Bobcat freshmen (Katie Urycki, Emma Ogden, Jamie Paolucci) find themselves ranked in the Top-8 among all MAAC players in aces per set.
Pounding the Rock
Freshman right side Jamie Paolucci put forth her best game of the season on Saturday against the Stags as she went for seven kills and was an absolute menace from the service line with four aces. Paolucci's serve helped put away the third set victory for the Bobcats while her offensive output represented the most kills for her in a match since Sept. 13 (four matches).
Ladies and Gentlemen…We Have a Winner
Freshman setter Emma Ogden became the first Bobcat to earn a weekly Player of the Week award in nearly three years, following Kayla Lawler's honor on Oct. 11, 2010. Ogden is also just the fourth Quinnipiac player to earn Player of the Week since the Bobcats became a Division I program in 1998, joining Lawler, Heather Wollyung and Shannon Dublin.
Going by the Numbers
Ogden was instrumental in the Bobcats' winningest stretch since the 2010 season as they picked up two victories in four games the Crosstown Tournament. Playing in all 14 sets for the Bobcats, she compiled 103 assists, 32 digs, five service aces and three kills. Included in her weekend totals was one double double against Morgan St., her second of the year. Ogden went for 29 assists and 14 digs to go along with two service aces as the Bobcats knocked off the Lady Bears. Earlier in the tournament, she posted 37 assists, seven digs and a career-high three service aces against St. Francis Brooklyn to help lift the Bobcats to their first win of the 2013 season.
It's All About the D
Quinnipiac's defense certainly came to play on Saturday against Fairfield as Allison Leigh lifted the team with five blocks (three solo, two assists) and Logan Riker chipped in a season-high 17 digs despite the loss.
Riding the Wave
Senior libero Logan Riker, already the program's all-time leader in digs, crossed the 1,200 career dig milestone on Saturday. Riker came through with 17 digs in the loss to give her double digit dig outings in nine of the past 10 matches for Quinnipiac.
The offense was flowing well on Saturday for the Bobcats due in large part from the play of their freshman setter Emma Ogden. They nearly matched the MAAC Preseason Favorite Fairfield in kills, 45-38, while Ogden pitched in 33 assists, her third match of the season going for at least 30 helpers.
Total Team Effort
As a team against Morgan St., the Bobcats registered 74 digs against the Lady Bears, the most for Quinnipiac in a match since Oct. 30, 2011 (38 matches). The Bobcats also dominated on the service line as they compiled 14 service aces compared to just three for Morgan St. The 14 aces represented the most for the Bobcats as a team since Sept. 10, 2011 (56 matches).
Look Out the Brit(s) are Coming
Quinnipiac's junior outside hitter Brittanie Robinson was an absolute force for the Bobcats all weekend as she posted 27 kills against just seven errors for a hitting percentage of .227. She also compiled three service aces, 42 digs (including a season-high 17 against Morgan St.) and four blocks throughout the tourney. Robinson's breakout game came against the Lady Bears as she posted a career-high 12 kills (against just one error) and picked it up defensive with 17 digs to finish with her fourth career double double.
This Girl is on Fire
The most imposing force for the Bobcats in the middle this season has undoubtedly been freshman Allison Leigh. She leads the team with 78 kills to go along with a .134 hitting percentage but Leigh's most valuable role on this team has been her defensive ability. After just 12 matches, she currently leads the MAAC with 48 total blocks (20 solo, 28 assists) and 1.11 blocks per set average.
It's a Block Party!
For as much as Leigh does on the offensive end, it's her defense that has been the most impressive area of her game thus far in the season. She currently leads all MAAC players with a 1.11 blocks per set average and is one of only three players in the conference to post an average of at least 1.00 per set.
MAAC Blocks Per Set Leaders (minimum 1.00 blocks per set)
|Rank||Player||School||Year||Blocks Per Set|
Master of Her Domain
After being granted a red-shirt season in 2011, senior libero Logan Riker is back for one more year with the Bobcats. Already the program's all-time leader in digs through her first three seasons, Riker has already posted a team-leading 139 digs to start the season.
Quinnipiac women's volleyball all-time career digs leaders
|1||Logan Riker, '13||1217|
|2||Kelby Carey, '11||1017|
|3||Kayla Lawler, '11||819|
|4||Erin Overdevest, '09||814|
|5||Crista Valentino, '08||754|
Katie's Time to Shine
One of the players who benefitted most from an increase in playing time over the weekend was freshman outside hitter Katie Urycki. She posted perhaps the best all-around game of any Bobcat this season with 11 kills, 12 digs and six blocks against St. Francis Brooklyn last Friday. It was her first career double double and she nearly went for another on Saturday as she chipped in nine kills and 10 digs to go along with four service aces against Morgan St.
Freshman setter Emma Ogden was expected to see plenty of playing time in her first season but the immediate impact has been a pleasant surprise. Her all-around ability cannot be overstated as she has compiled 289 assists, 86 digs, 11 blocks, 11 kills and 15 service aces through the first 12 matches. Ogden has played in all 42 sets thus far for the Bobcats and finished Saturday's match with 33 assists, eight digs and two aces.
Contact: Maxx McNall; firstname.lastname@example.org