Volleyball Aims to Win Regular Season Title and Secure No. 1 Seed in A-Sun Tourney
Thursday, November 08, 2012 | by Mike Hill (@mike_hill84)
Photo Credit: Dennis Snyder
Photo Credit: Dennis Snyder
Lipscomb (17-11, 14-3 A-Sun)
Florida Gulf Coast (22-8, 16-1 A-Sun)
11/9/2012 | Fort Myers, Fla. | Attendance: 520
Lipscomb192818 -- --
Florida Gulf Coast253025 -- --
Stats at a GlanceLIPFGCU
Hitting Pct..173.279
Total Attacks127111
Statistical LeadersLIPFGCU
KillsDOBSON - 12
AssistsDOTSON - 36
MEYER - 21
FORD - 1
DigsREX - 10
BlocksDOBSON - 1

FORT MYERS, Fla. – Winners of 17 of their last 18 matches, the FGCU volleyball team will host Lipscomb and Northern Kentucky in a pair of crucial Atlantic Sun Conference matches this weekend.

The Eagles (21-8, 15-1 A-Sun), undefeated in Alico Arena this season (9-0), will host the three-time defending A-Sun Champion Lipscomb Lady Bisons (17-10, 14-2 A-Sun) at 6 p.m. on Friday, followed by a Saturday night (7 p.m.) matchup with Northern Kentucky (23-7 overall, 10-6 A-Sun).

FGCU currently has a one game lead over Lipscomb for the top spot in the conference standings. To capture the outright A-Sun Regular Season title and the No. 1 seed in the conference tournament, the Eagles must defeat Lipscomb. If the Eagles were to fall to LU on Friday night, they would need to take one set from the Bisons and defeat NKU on Saturday in order to win a share of the regular season crown and still keep the No. 1 seed for the A-Sun Tournament (Nov. 15-17).

The Green and Blue, who have only lost five sets to A-Sun opponents at Alico Arena this season, showcase five players that have registered at least 175 kills far this season, led by sophomore Jill Hopper’s (Muncie, Ind./Yorktown HS) team-leading 289. FGCU leads the league in hitting (.264) and opponent hitting (.177) in league matches this year, paced by Olivia Mesner, who has attacked at a .440 clip in league play this season. Sophomore Whitney Masters (Muncie, Ind./Wapahani HS) leads the team with 364 digs (3.53/set). The setting duo of sophomore Gigi Meyer (Gainesville, Fla./Buchholz HS) and junior Courtney Greenberg (Fort Myers, Fla./Fort Myers HS/Juniata College) has run the FGCU offense, averaging 5.88 assists and 4.50 assists per set, respectively.

Along with updates on twitter @FGCU_VB and @FGCUEagles, fans can also get volleyball updates from around the Atlantic Sun by using the hashtag #ASUNVB.

Live stats for both matches will be available at FGCUAthletics.com and live video on ASun.TV for the NKU match will be available free of charge.

Friday, November 9
FGCU vs. Lipscomb, 6 p.m.
Series Information: Lipscomb leads 8-3

Saturday, November 10
FGCU vs. Northern Kentucky, 7 p.m.
Series Information: FGCU leads 2-0

LU, winners of six straight, recently wrapped up a five-match homestand where they went undefeated.

The last time the Green and Blue hosted the Bisons, who are 6-4 in road matches this season, at Alico Arena was on Nov. 5, 2010. The Bisons defeated FGCU 3-2 (25-16, 23-25, 25-23, 25-20, 15-12) in a hard-fought match in Fort Myers.

In A-Sun matches only, the Eagles and the Bison rank first and second in the A-Sun in hitting pct., assists and kills. FGCU also is second in the conference in blocks. Lipscomb’s Kaycee Green and Catilin Dotson lead the A-Sun in kills (4.26/set) and assists (12.07/set) in A-Sun play, while Dotson also ranks 13th in the nation in assists in the latest NCAA statistical rankings.

If eligible, the Norse, at 23-7 overall and 10-6 in A-Sun play, would have already clinched no worse than a No. 5 seed in the A-Sun Tournament.
NKU closed out the home schedule with victories over Mercer (3-0) and Kennesaw State (3- 1). Haley Lippert hit .339 during the two matches and recorded a team-high 29 kills. Lippert also collected a career-high six digs in the Kennesaw State victory.

In the last matchup between FGCU and NKU on Oct. 13, the Eagles rallied back from a set 1 loss to claim a 3-1 (16-25, 25-19, 25-21, 25-19) win over the Norse. Jill Hopper had 16 kills, including seven in the decisive fourth set, while Kelly Morrissey lead the Norse with 16 kills of her own.