COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. - Southwestern opens the Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference with a Friday afternoon match with Centenary College. The Pirates enter as the #3 seed while Centenary is the #6 seed.
The two teams have squared off two other times this season and Southwestern easily won both matches 3-0. In the first contest, SU hit a respectable .235 while the second match-up saw the Pirates with a .347 attack percentage while holding the Ladies to -.022.
In each match Southwestern has used a balanced attack to take on the Ladies, posting just one player with double digit kills in either match.
On the season, Southwestern is fifth in the SCAC in attack percentage, just one spot better than Centenary. The big difference maker in the contest is sure to be digs, which have been a strong suit for the Pirates all season. Southwestern leads the SCAC in digs per set, averaging 21.49, while the nearest competitor is nearly two behind at 19.91.
SCAC Player-of-the-Year Rachel Thibodeau will lead the attack for the Pirates. Averaging nearly 3.5 kills per set Thibodeau has solid back-up in Meredith Rollins, Kaitlyn Foster and Olivia Drummond. Rollins and Foster each average 2.5 kills per set and Drummond adds in and 1.75. Lacey Strickland will be sure to do her part to get the attack going, just like she has done all year, averaging 9.32 assists per set.
Lorin Froetschel commands the net, averaging just under one block a game while Foster and Chandler Lentz take on the bulk of the defensive duty. Lentz leads with 5.08 digs per set while Foster posts another 4.27.
Centenary will be looking to leading attacker Sarah Irons who has posted 130 kills on the year, while SU's defense will be challenged to know where the attack is coming from as the Ladies have four hitters that average 1.5 kills per game.
Game time is set for 2 p.m. MT and the winner of the match will face #2 seed Trinity in the second round at 7 p.m. The losing team will drop into the loser's bracket and risk elimination when they face the loser of #5 University of Dallas and #4 Austin College. Live stats and video links are available at http://www.cctigers.com/sports/2012/10/18/VB_1018122506.aspx.