Blazers Travel To Indiana For Hoosier Classic

UABSPORTS.COM Junior Sara Rishell leads C-USA in blocks with 44 so far this season.
UABSPORTS.COM
Junior Sara Rishell leads C-USA in blocks with 44 so far this season.
UABSPORTS.COM

Sept. 12, 2013

UAB (7-2) vs. Tennessee State (1-2)
Friday, Sept. 13 at 4:00 p.m. CT
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UAB (7-2) vs. Wyoming (6-1)
Saturday, Sept. 14 at 9:00 a.m. CT
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UAB (7-2) at Indiana (5-1)
Saturday, Sept. 14 at 6:00 p.m. CT
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BIRMINGHAM, Ala. ----- The UAB volleyball team will compete in its third tournament of the season this weekend when it travels to Bloomington, Ind. for the Hoosier Classic from Friday, Sept. 13 through Saturday, Sept. 14.  The other teams in the tournament will include Tennessee State (1-2), Wyoming (6-1) and Indiana (5-1).

UAB will face-off with Tennessee State on Friday at 4 p.m. This will be the seventh time in school history that the two teams have met, with the Blazers holding a 6-0 record over the Tigers. The last meeting between the two teams was in 2009 when UAB defeated Tennessee State 3-0. The Tigers are led by Naomi Wells, who has been a dual-threat recording 44 kills and 32 digs in four matches.

On Saturday, the Blazers will take to the court at 10 a.m. against Wyoming. It will be the second time UAB has competed against the Lady Cowgirls, the only other meeting coming in 2008 when the Blazers won 3-2. Mikaela Ryshytylo is leading the Lady Cowgirls with 83 kills for an average of 3.19 per set and is second on the team with 76 digs.


 

 

The final match for the Blazers will be against the host school Indiana Saturday at 6 p.m. UAB will face the Hoosiers for the second time in school history, as they look to avenge the 2010 loss. Leading Indiana’s attack is Awele Nwaeze with 47 kills this season.  She is hitting a solid .421 percentage on the season.

Blazers Leading League
UAB currently sits atop Conference USA in blocks with 94 and is second with a .268 hitting percentage on the season. Junior Sara Rishell, reigning C-USA Defensive Player of the Week, has been spectacular in her first season with the Blazers, netting 44 blocks to lead the conference. Rishell is a dual-threat for the Green and Gold as she also ranks fourth in the league with a clip of .355.

Offensively, junior Kiriana Hirini is hitting an impressive .439 with 94 kills on the season to rank second in the league. Sophomore Sam Skinner has recorded 116 kills during 2013. Her average of 4.00 kills per set is fourth in C-USA. Skinner has tallied double-digit kills in eight consecutive matches. Setting up for the Blazers has been senior Becca Howard, who has been named C-USA Setter of the Week twice this season. Howard is boasting 11.52 assists per set to rank second in the conference.

All-Tournament Selections
Most recently, Hirini and Rishell were named to the Middle Tennessee Invitational All-Tournament Team. This was the first All-Tournament honor for both this season. 

Over the three matches, Hirini added 10 blocks to her 30 kills and hit a team high clip of .457. Hirini had one of her best matches of the season on Saturday against Virginia Tech. She hit an impressive .583 attack percentage, landing 15 kills and added eight blocks to lead the Blazers.

Rishell led UAB with 19 blocks on the weekend. She recorded a career-high eight against North Dakota and had at least five in each of the three matches. Rishell was also strong offensively, hitting in double-figures in the matches against North Dakota (11) and Virginia Tech (10).

UAB had two players selected to the UAB/Samford All-Tournament Team. Outside hitter Sam Skinner led the Blazers with 53 kills over the weekend. She hit in double-digits in three of the four matches, including 17 against #6 Minnesota.

Becca Howard was also selected for the Blazers after she notched 152 assists for an average of 11.69 per set. She also tallied a double-double with a career-high 54 helpers and 14 digs against Jacksonville State.

For the latest news on Blazer sports, follow the UAB Athletics Twitter account: @UABathletics. For volleyball news, follow @UAB_VB.

                  

 
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