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MARTIN, Tenn. – The University of Tennessee at Martin volleyball team begins the second half of its Ohio Valley Conference schedule this weekend when it travels to Eastern Kentucky (5 p.m., Friday, Oct. 19) and Morehead State (1 p.m., Saturday, Oct. 20). Both of UT Martin’s matches this weekend will be streamed live free of charge courtesy of the OVC Digital Network.
The Skyhawks enter the weekend with an 8-14 overall record and 4-4 league mark. Last Saturday, UT Martin staged a comeback in a 3-2 home victory over Belmont (19-25, 22-25, 29-27, 25-19, 16-14). In that match, the Skyhawk offense was led by a career-best 21 kills by sophomore Emily Keaton, who also added 14 digs for her sixth double-double of the season. Freshmen Shelby Hoskins (18 kills, nine blocks) and Amanda Crask (51 assists, 14 digs) also posted career-high performances to lead the offense.
Defensively, Kasey Elswick’s 31 digs led the Skyhawks, while Taylor Simons compiled a career-best 13 digs for UT Martin, who held Belmont to a .102 attack percentage over the last three sets.
Keaton leads the team with 188 kills, while Lynsey Hazelwood’s 2.64 kills per set rank first on the squad. Crask (.216) and Hoskins (.213) rank amongst the team leaders in attack percentage.
Elswick paces the OVC in digs (469, 5.86 per set) and stands just 23 digs shy of becoming the OVC’s all-time career digs leader. In last season’s meeting at Eastern Kentucky, Elswick compiled a Skyhawk record 46 digs in only four sets. At the net, Hoskins (63 blocks, 0.86 per set) and Jackie Harter (55 blocks, 0.71 per set) lead the UT Martin defense.
Eastern Kentucky (5-13, 2-6 OVC) is coming off a weekend split on the road, downing Tennessee Tech 3-1 before falling to Jacksonville State in five sets.
Offensively, the Colonels are paced by Ashley Edmond, who ranks seventh in the OVC in kills (181, 2.97 per set). Rachel Vick (team-high .200 attack percentage) and Abbey Cvelbar (330 assists, 6.35 per set) also lead the Eastern Kentucky offense.
Dena Ott ranks fifth in the league in digs (316, 4.94 per set), while Kelsey Kuehner has turned away a team-high 49 blocks (0.77 per set) for the Colonels.
Morehead State (16-6, 8-0 OVC) enters the weekend on a 14-match winning streak, having not lost a match since Sept. 5. The Eagles lead the OVC in opponent hitting percentage (.147), assists (1061, 12.63 per set) and kills (1138, 13.55 per set).
Ellie Roberson (OVC-high 325 kills, 4.28 per set) is coming off a spectacular weekend, as she was named National Player of the Week by The Collegiate Volleyball Update. She hit .464 with 60 kills (6.67 per set) on the week, tallying 28 kills at Jacksonville State and 32 at Tennessee Tech.
Aryn Bohannon ranks sixth in the OVC in kills (257, 0.57 per set), while Annie Gruenschlaeger ranks second in the OVC in hitting percentage (.297) and blocks (98, 1.17 per set).