STORRS, Conn. (August 25, 2006) – The University of Connecticut volleyball team will open its 2006 season against Hartford on Saturday, August, 26, 2006 at Harry A. Gampel Pavilion. Match time is set for 2 p.m.
Ranked ninth in the BIG EAST preseason poll, the Huskies return eight letterwinners from a year ago. UConn finished the 2005 campaign with a 15-13 record, 7-7 in the BIG EAST.
Keying the returnees are seniors Kaity Craig (Terryville, Conn.) and Megan Silver (Snohomish, Wash.). Craig is coming off a 60-kill season, seeing action in 26 matches and 55 games. Silver had a banner season herself in 2005, posting career-highs in kills (12), blocks (9) and aces (3).
The junior class returns student-athletes Sade Chambers (Baldwinsville, N.Y.), Julie Pickard (Hillsborough, N.C.) and Brittany Stewart (Dolton, Ill.). In addition, the Huskies welcome University of Dayton transfer Gina Heiderman. Chambers appeared in 27 of UConn’s 28 matches during 2005 while registering career highs in kills (16) and attack percentage (.624). Pickard returns to the lineup as the Huskies leader in digs in 2005 with 294. The versatile Stewart rounds out the returning juniors who saw action in all 28 matches in 2005. She tallied 122 kills and 284 digs. Heiderman joins the Huskies as a transfer from the University of Dayton. In her career as a Flyer, she posted 59 kills, 32 blocks and 11 aces in 69 games.
The sophomore class returns Megan Frey (Chaska, Minn.), Lorelle Schaub (New Brighton, Min..) and Sarah Singer (Waukesha, Wisc.). Frey tallied 52 digs and 6 blocks in her rookie season, appearing in 21 matches. The team’s Most Improved Player, Schaub, played in 28 games in 2005, collecting 33 kills and 29 blocks. Singer had an impressive rookie season appearing in 28 matches and is the leading returnee after tallying 246 kills in the 2005 season.
The Huskies welcome five freshmen to the 2006 team. Jessica Adams (Plain City, Ohio), Bridget Denson-Dorman (Golden Valley, Minn.), Devon Farrell (Lafayette, Calif.), Jessica Issac (Erlanger, Ky.) and Kate Seabaugh (St. Louis, Mo.) will all be vying for playing time this season.
UConn leads the all-time series with Hartford with an impressive 17-3 record. The Huskies are lead by second-year head coach Holly Strauss and is assisted by Tim O’Brien and Lauren Holbrook.