Volleyball Preview: Charleston Southern hosts Liberty and Radford on Homecoming weekend

Volleyball Preview: Charleston Southern hosts Liberty and Radford on Homecoming weekend

CHARLESTON, S.C. - Charleston Southern returns home to the Buc Dome this weekend as CSU hosts Liberty and Radford in Big South Conference play.

The Bucs host Liberty on Friday night with the match to be streamed live on the Big South Network, with live stats on CSUSports.com and updates provided on Twitter. First serve between the Bucs and the Flames is set for 7 p.m.

Saturday pits the Bucs against Radford to wrap up Homecoming weekend as CSU hosts the Highlanders. Live Stats will be provided for the match, with first serve set for 7 p.m.

Charleston Southern Match Notes

Last 5 against Liberty...
Charleston Southern is 0-5 overall going back to the 2010 season against Liberty. The Bucs last victory over the Flames came in the 2006 season on the road inside the Vines Center on Oct. 21, winning 3-0.

Liberty (0-5)
       10/18/13                 A                       L, 0-3
       10/12/12                 H                      L, 2-3
       11/15/12                  N                      L, 0-3
       10/15/11                  A                       L, 0-3
       10/25/10                 H                      L, 2-3 

Last Time The Bucs Met the Flames...
Liberty 3, Charleston So. 0 * October 18, 2013
Charleston Southern fell to late Liberty rallies in both the first and second sets as the Buccaneers were unable to overcome the host Flames on the road on Friday evening inside the Vines Center in suffering the 26-24, 25-22, 25-13 defeat.

Katrina Houston had 11 kills to lead the Buccaneers offense on the evening, while CSU combined for nine total team blocks in the match, but it was not enough to top the Flames as Charleston Southern was unable to pick up the Big South Conference win. 

Last 5 against Radford...
Charleston Southern is 2-3 overall going back to the 2010 season against Radford. The Bucs last win over the Highlanders came in the 2010 season when the Bucs swept Radford in both matches that season by matching 3-0 scores. 

Radford (2-3)
       10/19/13                 A                       L, 0-3
       10/13/12                 H                      L, 0-3
      10/14/11                  A                       L, 0-3
       10/23/10                 A                     W, 3-0
       9/24/10                   H                    W, 3-0

Last Time The Bucs Met the Highlanders...
Radford 3, Charleston So. 0 * October 19, 2013
Charleston Southern closed out their three match road trip on Saturday afternoon, falling in straight sets to Big South opponent Radford inside the Dedmon Center Arena, 25-14, 25-16, 25-16.

Siraya Windsor had nine kills for the Buccaneers on the match as CSU could not keep pace with the high-powered Radford attack as the Highlanders hit .458 from the floor in the match in recording the important conference win.

Scouting the Flames...
Liberty has been led on the season by Caroline Douglas' 4.39 kills per set, while Hannah Weidner is averaging 3.37 kills per set. Nzea McQuitery is hitting .332 on the season to lead the Flames, while Caila Stapleton is the team leader with 11.00 assists per set. Sirena Vorster is averaging 0.31 service aces per set.

Defensively, Gabrielle Shipe is the team leader with 4.48 digs per set, while Stapleton averages 2.83 digs per set. At the net, Jade Vorster paces the Flames with 1.24 blocks per set, while Sirena Vorster is among the team leaders with 0.76 blocks per set.

Scouting the Highlanders...
Rachel Wiechecki leads Radford with 3.42 kills per set, while Maddie Palmer is averaging 2.56 kills per set. Megan Short leads the Highlanders with a .315 hitting percentage, while Emma Deininger connects at a .296 rate on the season. Jena Braden averages 9.81 assists per set, while Wiechecki is the team leader with 0.38 aces per set.

Defensively, Wiechecki averages 3.74 digs per set, while Kelby Jackson is also averaging more than three digs per set at 3.55. At the net, Savannah Cantrell leads the way with 0.96 blocks per set, while Deininger is averaging 0.75 blocks per set.

Player Watch...
Meredith Parrott, CSU, Jr., Outside Hitter
Parrrott continues to sit among both the CSU and Big South leaders on the season in multiple categories, as the junior outside hitter sits 3rd overall in kills, 4th overall in points and 6th in hitting percentage on the season in the conference rankings. For the year, Parrott is averaging 3.46 kills per set while hitting .293 from the floor.

Kylie Klein, CSU, Fr., Middle Blocker
Klein has quietly put together a solid freshman season with the Bucs at the midway point of the year, sitting fourth overall on the team in kills with 1.73, third in hitting percentage at .251, while leading the team in blocks at 0.60 on the year. Klein, a Highlands Ranch, Colo. native, has improved her standing at the net in Big South Conference matches, sitting tied for eighth overall in the conference with 0.90 blocks per set.

1,000 Dig Club...
Ashley Higginbothem became the eighth player in CSU history to join the 1,000 dig club on Wednesday, passing Kathy Dantzler to move into seventh all-time with 1,007 career digs. Higginbothem, who started the season with 850 digs, is averaging 2.49 digs per set on the season.

Rk          Name                                                                         Digs
1.             Carrie O'Connell (1991-94)                                 1,833
6.            Sam Sasan (2006-09)                                           1,102
7.            Ashley Higginbothem (2011-pres.)        1,007
8.            Kathy Dantzler (1991-94)              1,000

Homegrown...
The Bucs have three players from the state of South Carolina on the 2014 roster with Siraya Windsor (Lexington), Liza Walker (Fort Mill) and Taylor Allman (Little River), all representing the Palmetto State.

Getting to Know You...
The Buccaneers welcomed six new players to the Charleston Southern roster this season.

Middle Blocker: Connor Malone,  Kylie Klein
Outside Hitter: Amanda Metz, Liza Walker
Setter: Brooke Green
Libero: Taylor Marin

Northern Border...
Charleston Southern senior setter Kirsten Struksnes is the lone international player on the CSU roster in the 2014 season, coming to the Bucs from Calgary, Alberta. During her time with the Bucs, Struksnes is sitting seventh all-time among the career leaders with 1,374 career set assists. Highlights from her playing career include four 50-plus set assist matches, including two back-to-back on Oct. 9, 2012 at The Citadel (55 assists) and Oct. 12 vs. Liberty (56 assists).

Record Setting Performance...
Allman broke a CSU record for digs in a single match as the sophomore libero recorded 36 digs over the four sets to break the previous record held by Jennifer Monson set on November 3, 2000 against UNC Asheville with 32 digs. Allman recorded 11 in the first set, six in the second, eight in the third and 11 in the fourth to pace CSU in the game and record the highest dig effort in the Big South in a single match to date in the 2014 season. Allman is currently fourth in the Big South in averaging 4.58 digs and continues to provide steady leadership for the Bucs with 16 matches where she has reached double-digits.

Swing Away...
Connor Malone enters the week as the Big South Conference leader in hitting percentage in conference matches, connecting at a .444 rate in Big South play on the season. Malone, a redshirt sophomore from Scottsdale, Ariz., had nine kills against both Presbyterian and Campbell, while hitting a team-high .600 on September 27th against Winthrop. She is averaging 1.62 kills per set on the season in Big South play and 0.44 blocks per set.

Last Time Out…
Charleston Southern 3, N.C. Central 0 * Durham, N.C. * October 15, 2014
Katrina Houston led Charleston Southern with 13 kills and Siraya Windsor recorded her ninth double-double as the Buccaneers defeated host N.C. Central on Wednesday evening inside McDougald-McLendon Gymnasium, 25-22, 25-18, 25-18.

Redshirt junior libero Ashley Higginbothem became the eighth player in CSU history to join the Bucs 1,000 dig club, finishing the match with 14 digs to move into seventh all-time in the CSU record books. Higginbothem passed Kathy Dantzler (1991-94) and finished the match with 1,007 career digs in the CSU Blue and Gold as the Bucs defeated the Eagles.

CSU Record Watch…
Kills
16     Hollie Bates (1999-02)                689
17     Meredith Parrott                    682
24    Siraya Windsor                        612 

Attacks
14     Katie O'Riordan (2002-05)      2,107
15     Siraya Windsor                    2,132
22    Meredith Parrott                  1,710 

Hitting %
5       Katie O'Riordan (2002-05)     0.268
6       Meredith Parrott                0.264 

Assists
6       Amy Nokes (2007-11)               1,997
7       Cassidy Greer                        1,740
8       Kirsten Struksnes                1,385 

Aces
18     Renae Popovich (2004-07)           78
19     Siraya Windsor                          77 

Digs
6       Sam Sasan (2006-09)                1,102
7       Ashley Higginbothem        1,007
24    Siraya Windsor                        613 

Blocks
20     Jenny Shaw (1999-02)                 186
21           Meredith Parrott            179

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