USF most recently split a weekend at home with a four-set defeat to Tulane (Oct. 7) but responding with a 3-1 victory over Houston (Oct. 9).
Highlights from the weekend included the 1,000th career dig for senior libero Amy Van Sant (Atlanta), and a career-high nine blocks from redshirt sophomore middle blocker Clara Payne (Osteen, Fla.) in the win against UH (Oct. 9).
Payne’s performance also helped her appear on The American’s weekly honor roll for the second consecutive week.
Temple enters the weekend tied with SMU for first place in The American. The Owls were projected to finish second in the preseason coaches’ poll. Both Irem Asci and Kirsten Overton were named to the preseason all-conference team. TU finished 7-3 in non-conference play and the Bulls will be looking to break the Owls five-match winning streak. Temple is 5-2 at home this season.
UConn is currently in third place in The American, one game ahead of the Bulls. The Huskies were picked to place fifth in the preseason coaches’ poll. Jade Strawberry was the lone UConn student-athlete to appear on the preseason all-conference team. The Huskies have won three of their last five matches. UConn owns a 5-1 home mark at Gampel Pavilion.
USF owns a 10-4 record in the all-time series with TU. The Bulls actually won the first 10 meetings while the Owls have been victorious in the last four.
UConn holds the slight 8-7 lead over USF. The Bulls have won five of the last six meetings.
- USF ranks second in The American in digs (17.52).
- Junior setter Alex Mendoza (Minneola, Fla.) is averaging 10.7 assists per set, most in The American this season.
- Senior right side hitter Elyse Panick (Chicago) is averaging 0.38 service aces per set, the second best average in the league.
- Senior outside hitter Dakota Hampton (Orland Park, Ill.) is nearing the 1000 career kill plateau. She currently has 954 career kills.
The USF volleyball program has reached the NCAA Tournament seven times and boasts seven conference championships. In 2016, the Bulls return 10 players from last season including their top eight point scorers from a year ago. USF also brings back senior outside hitter Dakota Hampton (Orland Park, Ill.), who was named to the 2016 American Athletic Conference preseason team. The 6-0 start was the program’s longest winning streak to begin a season since 2000. The Bulls are guided by fifth year head coach Courtney Draper. Follow the volleyball team on social media (Twitter | Facebook | Instagram) and visit GoUSFBulls.com for the most up-to-date information.
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