Volleyball Continues Road Swing with Midweek Match in Cullowhee
GREENSBORO, N.C. – UNCG volleyball will play its third-straight road match Wednesday night in Cullowhee, North Carolina, as the Spartans will take on Southern Conference-foe Western Carolina at 6 p.m. inside the Ramsey Center. The Spartans enter at 9-9 and 2-4 in the Southern Conference, Western Carolina is currently 6-13 and 1-5 in the SoCon.
Live stats and video will be available for tomorrow’s match. Links are available on the UNCG volleyball schedule page. The video stream will be on ESPN3/WatchESPN app.
The winner of tomorrow’s match will take the all-time series lead as both teams have won 23 matches. Last season, UNCG defeated the Catamounts in all three meetings. The Spartans earned a 3-0 sweep in Cullowhee, and eliminated Western Carolina from the Southern Conference Tournament in Birmingham, Alabama. In total, the Spartans have won the last five-consecutive matches with the Catamounts.
The Spartans enter the midweek contest having dropped three consecutive matches. It’s the first time this season that UNCG as dropped three straight, and the first three-game losing streak since the Tussle in the Triad in the second weekend of the season in 2016.
Ashley Muench (Hurdle Mills, N.C./Orange) continues to pace the Spartan offense. The senior outside hitter averages 3.78 kills per set and is hitting at a career-best .257 percentage. Allison Penner (Aurora, Neb./Aurora) averages 10.49 assists per set as she has earned 703 assists on the season. She adds 51 kills and leads the team with eight double-doubles while recording 2.58 digs per set.
The Spartan backline features three defensive specialists. Christina Gregory (Louisville, Ky./Sacred Heart Academy) leads the team with a 4.52 digs per set average. Anna Romaniszyn (Port Orange, Fla./Spruce Creek) and Grace Howell (Rockwall, Texas/Rockwall-Heath) add 2.32 and 2.19 digs per set, respectively.
The Catamounts enter Wednesday’s matchup having lost four straight, and five of its last six games. After splitting its matches on the first weekend of SoCon play, Western Carolina has dropped matches at home against Samford and Mercer, and at Furman and Wofford.
Abigail Veit has been the team’s most valuable player during the season. Veit leads the team with 2.78 kills per set, totaling 189 on the season. She is second on the squad with 204 digs as she averages 3.00 per set. Jo-Leigh VerVelde has added 481 assists during the course of the season as she averages 9.08 per set. Hannah Price has also seen time as the Catamount setter, recording 174 assists, 4.97 per set in ten matches.
Megan Sanchez is the only Catamount who records more digs per set than Veit. Sanchez has earned 243 digs, 3.57 per set, and has added 49 assists this year. VerVelde adds 2.58 digs per set to the WCU backline.