Match 19 – Marshall (9-10, 3-1 C-USA) at Rice (4-14, 1-3 C-USA)
Friday, Oct. 11 – 8 p.m. Location: Houston
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Match 20 – Marshall (9-10, 3-1 C-USA) at North Texas (11-9, 3-1 C-USA)
Sunday, Oct. 13 – 1 p.m. Location: Denton, Texas
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HUNTINGTON, W.Va. – Marshall volleyball travels to Texas this weekend to take on Conference USA foes Rice and North Texas.
Marshall (9-10, 3-1 C-USA) enters the weekend after defeating Louisiana Tech, 3-0, on Sunday Oct. 6. The Thundering Herd has started conference play 3-1. The Marshall squad is led by senior outside hitter Laura Der (Clarksville, Ind.), who has tallied 159 kills, averaging 3.18 per set and 164 digs.
At the net for the Herd is senior middle blocker Sacha Byous-McConnell (Rancho Cucamonga, Calif.), who is sixth in C-USA with a .354 hitting percentage while collecting 153 kills.
Have you Herd?
Have you heard that records are meant to be broken? The 2013 season is going to be one for the record book. Der has moved into sixth all-time in kills at Marshall after crossing the 1,000-kill plateau against FIU Sept. 29. She also is eighth in all-time digs with 1,117.
Junior setter Sammie Bane (Brownstown, Ind.) also engraved her name into the record book when she made her 3,000th career assist against FAU Sept. 27. Bane ranks fourth at Marshall with 3,141 career assists.
Senior libero Dorothy Rahal (Venice, Fla.) moved into second place in Marshall history in digs against Louisiana Tech Oct. 6. Rahal has 1,440 digs in her four-year career as a member of the Herd.
Scouting the Owls
Rice was the preseason favorite to win C-USA, as voted by the league’s 15 coaches. The Owls (4-14, 1-3 C-USA) dropped their last two conference matches on the road against last year’s champion, Tulsa, and Southern Miss. Rice is led offensively by junior middle blocker Jillian Humphrey, who has tallied 207 kills, averaging 3.04 kills per set. She also leads the team with 79 total blocks, 65 assisted and 14 solo. The Owls are coached by Genny Volpe, who is in her 10th year with the program.
Scouting the Mean Green
North Texas won the Sun Belt West Division a season ago and is looking to become a force in C-USA. The Mean Green (11-9, 3-1 C-USA) dropped its last conference match at the hands of last year’s champion Tulsa. Before that loss, it had won four straight and started conference play 3-0. North Texas is led by Carnae Dillard, who has tallied 278 kills and is third in C-USA with 4.03 kills per set. She is also second on the team with 218 digs, averaging 3.16 digs per set. The Mean Green is led by first-year coach Andrew Palileo.
Marshall will return home to continue conference action against East Carolina on Oct. 18 at 5:30 p.m. ET.