’Hawks hope to rebound Tuesday against Muskies
Published: Tuesday, September 4, 2012
Updated: Tuesday, September 4, 2012 00:09
The Miami University volleyball team fell to three different teams at the Diet Coke Classic over the weekend, failing to lock down Head Coach Carolyn Condit’s 600th-career win.
The Minneapolis-based tournament matched the Red and White against the University at Albany, the 16th-ranked University of Minnesota and Long Island University-Brooklyn (LIU-Brooklyn).
Miami (1-5) kicked off the Diet Coke Classic Friday night with a 2-3 loss to Albany (1-3). Sophomore setter/outside hitter Meg Riley and junior libero Madison Hardy put up impressive stats. Riley racked up 17 kills, 23 assists and 12 digs while Hardy had 19 digs.
Other great performances by the ’Hawks include senior setter Amy Kendall’s 28 assists and 10 digs along with redshirt freshman outside hitter Sarah Chaney’s 13 kills and 5 digs.
However, the Red and White could not overcome the three Great Danes who each recorded kill-dig double-doubles: sophomore outside hitter Sarah Pope, senior outside hitter/middle blocker Traci Vandergrift and senior outside hitter Dunja Prgomet.
Saturday morning, the nationally ranked and undefeated Minnesota Golden Gophers (4-0) swept the Red and White. Senior outside hitter/middle hitter Christina Menche contributed seven kills and a hitting percentage of .636, but it was not enough as the Gophers, led by junior outside hitter Ashley Wittman’s 10 kills and 11 digs, asserted their authority throughout the match with a team hitting percentage of .533.
“Playing at Minnesota was a huge wakeup call to us as a team,” Hardy said. “Playing a top 20 team really showed us the areas of our game we have to improve. These were not the results we wanted or expected from the weekend but that’s the best part of these preseason tournaments, they teach you so much and help before we get into match play.”
LIU-Brooklyn (3-3) then swept Miami to close out the Diet Coke Classic.
Hardy put together a double-double of 10 kills and 13 assists. Unfortunately, that was not enough, as the Blackbirds’ duo of sophomore opposite Annika Foit and freshman outside hitter Tamara Ignjic combined for 24 kills and 16 digs to go with the 35 assists by sophomore setter Vera Djuric.
“Tuesday is our first home game versus Xavier [University],” Hardy said. “We feel very confident that we can come off this weekend and show what Miami volleyball is about. We hope to see a lot of fans for the first home game to give us that great advantage being on our home court.”
Condit said despite the results, the tournament helped the ’Hawks.
“The tournament was a good experience for us,” Condit said. “It was a good opportunity to face such good competition this early in the season. We would have liked the outcome to be different, but we’re very confident coming home to face Xavier.”
The RedHawks make their home debut 7 p.m. Tuesday in Millett Hall against the Musketeers.
The Red and White will be tested, as Xavier’s senior libero Stephanie Vorherr set a single game record Friday night against the University of Mississippi in the 2012 Xavier Invitational with 45 digs.