Sept. 19, 2013
Tournament Notes (PDF)
STORRS, Conn. -- Fresh off its first tournament title of the year, the UConn women's volleyball team (5-5, 0-0 American) travels to the Dartmouth Duel in Hanover, N.H. this weekend, the final of four regular season tournaments for the Huskies. Connecticut will face, in order, New Hampshire, Dartmouth, No. 9 Minnesota and Rhode Island at Dartmouth's Leede Arena on Friday and Saturday.
The Huskies last visited the state of New Hampshire in the 2011 season, participating in the Holly Young Invitational in Durham on Sept. 9-11. This will be UConn’s first trip to Hanover and Dartmouth’s Leede Arena.
The Dartmouth Duel features four teams that Connecticut has faced before, with varying degrees of familiarity. UConn is 2-0 all-time against Dartmouth and 0-3 vs. Minnesota, but has played a combined 44 matches all time against Rhode Island and New Hampshire. The Huskies are 6-15 against the Rams and 16-7 versus the Wildcats.
SCOUTING THE OPPOSITION:
The Wildcats take on the Huskies sitting at 5-6 on the year, having most recently gone 0-3 at the Maryland Tournament with losses to the host Terps, as well as Villanova and George Mason. Morgan Thatcher leads the UNH attack with 3.05 kills per set, while NDemi Muses has a team-high .358 attack percentage. Madison Lightfoot is tops on the squad with 4.05 digs, and Taylor Danklau averages 8.32 assists per set. UNH has been strong in its home state this year, compiling a 3-1 record in games played there.
The Big Green hosts their second consecutive tournament this weekend, after going 3-1 at the Big Green Invitational with wins over CCSU, Manhattan and Providence, before being tripped up by Grand Canyon in their most recent contest. Paige Caridi was named Ivy League Co-Player of the Week after the tournament, and is second on the team with 2.77 kills per set to go along with 3.42 digs, also second on the team. Molly Kornfeid is the top attacked with 3.17 k/s, and Molly Harper is tops with 3.67 digs. Elisa Scudder posts a team-high 1.95 blocks/set, and Kayden Cook adds 7.40 assists per frame.
The Golden Gophers face UConn as the No. 9 team in the country, per the latest AVCA Coaches Poll. The Gophers are off to an 8-1 start, with a pair of tournament titles under their belts. Minnesota is led by Tori Dixon and Ashley Wittman, who average 4.34 and 3.71 kills per set, respectively, both hitting over .400 on the year. Dixon is also the top blocker on the squad, turning aside 1.38 per set, while Wittman leads the way with 2.93 digs. Alexandra Palmer keys the offense with 10.97 assists per set.
The Rams come into the Dartmouth Duel sitting at 5-4 this year, riding a three-game win streak after defeating UMass Lowell, UTEP and Hartford at a tournament they hosted last weekend. Franki Darnold averages a team-high 3.75 k/s, and Callan Kinnan posts 9.84 assists. Kayln Schieffer scoops 4.7 digs a frame and Layne Self swats 1.22 blocks.
After the trip to the Granite State, UConn returns home to begin its first ever conference slate in the American Athletic Conference. First up for the Huskies are the SMU Mustangs, who will visit Gampel Pavilion on Sept. 27 at 7 p.m.