vs. FGCU | Saturday, September 14 | Lexington, Ky. | 1:00 p.m.
The Cleveland State volleyball team will continue its non-league slate at the Bluegrass Battle this weekend, traveling to Lexington, Kentucky for a trio of matches on Friday, September 13 and Saturday, September 14. To open the weekend, the Vikings will take on No. 15 Kentucky and Indiana on Friday, before facing FGCU in their tournament finale on Saturday.
VIKINGS FACE TOUGH NON-LEAGUE SCHEDULE
Cleveland State will face one of its hardest non-league schedules in recent years during 2019, as the Vikings will face four teams that were ranked or receiving votes in the Preseason Top-25 poll, six teams that made a postseason appearance last year, and five teams that posted 20 or more wins a year ago. This weekend's Bluegrass Battle features two of these teams, as the host Wildcats enter the weekend ranked 15th nationally, and both Kentucky and FGCU appeared in the NCAA Tournament last season.
POSTSEASON HONOREES RETURN
The 2019 Vikings welcome back four Horizon League postseason honorees, as Trinniti Hall (First Team), Emily DeGeorge (Honorable Mention), Hannah Greene (Honorable Mention), and Christina Grecol (All-Freshman Team) were all honored last fall. DeGeorge enters the 2019 campaign as the only Viking to earn multiple #HLVB postseason honors, as she was also named to the All-Freshman Team in 2017.
GREENE NAMED TO HAMPTON INN BGSU INVITE ALL-TOURNAMENT TEAM
Following one of the best weekend's of her career, junior Hannah Greene earned a spot on the Hampton Inn BGSU Invite All-Tournament Team - picking up her first All-Tournament accolade of the season. Greene combined for 51 kills and 15 total blocks on the weekend, including a career-high 19 kills against Bowling Green.
…GREENE ON THE BLOCK
After posting 15 total blocks last weekend, Hannah Greene continues to lead Cleveland State's blocking efforts, averaging 1.22 blocks per set this year. So far this season, Greene has recorded 3+ blocks in every match, including a season-high seven blocks against Butler. Greene has helped the Vikings record 10 or more total team blocks against three opponents this season, while she has 236 total blocks on her career.
HALL NAMED TO HAMPTON INN BGSU INVITE ALL-TOURNAMENT TEAM
Senior middle hitter Trinniti Hall picked up her second All-Tournament Team honor of the season last weekend, earning a spot on the Hampton Inn BGSU Invite All-Tournament Team after recording a team-high 54 total kills on a .353 hitting percentage. Hall notched double-digit kills against all-three opponents, including a 23-kill effort against Charlotte (23-4-38). After six matches, Hall leads the Vikings averaging 3.78 kills per set and has been Cleveland State's top offensive threat during four contests.
The 2019 edition of the Cleveland State volleyball team features seven true freshmen, marking the highest number of rookies for the Vikings over the last seven seasons. Four of these newcomers have played a significant role for the Vikings so far this season, including defensive specialist Julia Piccolino who has appeared in every set for Cleveland State.
So far this season the Cleveland State defense has been filled with new faces, as three of CSU's primary passers entered the year with limited or no collegiate experience. Sophomore Lindsey Tout is serving as the Viking libero this season averaging a team-high 4.22 digs per set, while freshmen Audrey McConihe (2.91 digs/set) and Julia Piccolino (2.09 digs/set) have appeared in all but one set as part of the CSU defense. This youthful trio is joined by junior Emily DeGeorge, who enters the weekend averaging 3.65 digs per set as a six rotation player.
…DeGEORGE CLOSING IN ON 1,000 CAREER DIGS
Entering the 2019 campaign, Emily DeGeorge is closing in on the 1,000-dig mark for her career, standing at 846 after the first two weeks of the season. DeGeorge, who set a CSU freshman class record with 325 digs as a rookie, is averaging 3.65 digs per set this year and has posted a pair of 20-dig performances. DeGeorge would become the 20th Viking to reach the 1,000-dig plateau, and would make 2019 the fifth straight year that a Viking has joined the 1K dig club.
GRECOL WITH THE ASSIST
After leading the Viking offense as a freshman last year, Christina Grecol returns for her sophomore season with 1,320 career helpers, after combining for 138 at the Hampton Inn BGSU Invite last weekend. Last year, Grecol earned a spot on the All-Freshman Team after averaging 9.92 assists per set last season, and was the first rookie to lead the Viking offense since the 2008 campaign. Entering this weekend's Bluegrass Battle, Grecol is just shy of earning a spot on the top-10 career assists list at Cleveland State.
HEAD COACH CHUCK VOSS
Chuck Voss is in his 20th season at the helm of the Vikings, and owns a 356-219 (.619) overall record at Cleveland State. Under Voss the Vikings have recorded 16 winning seasons, including 10 straight entering the 2019 season. Cleveland State has eclipsed the 20-win mark eight times since Voss took over the program, and has captured Horizon League Tournament titles five times (2007, 2012, 2015, 2016 & 2017) under his guidance. During the 2016 season Voss became the all-time winningest coach in program history, and then last season became the only active Horizon League coach to reach the 350-win mark at their current school.
The Vikings will close out their non-league schedule at home, hosting Niagara and Kent State in Woodling Gymnasium on Friday, September 20.