The women’s volleyball team extended its win streak to 12 games and remained undefeated in the Atlantic Sun Conference play after defeating the University of South Carolina Upstate and New Jersey Institute of Technology over the weekend.
The volleyball team has swept its last nine sets and has beaten each of its last three opponents by a combined score of 225-146.
The Owls entered Friday’s match against USC Upstate (11-13, 3-4 ASUN) on a 10-game winning streak, but head coach Keith Schunzel didn’t take this game lightly.
“They’re now 3-3, and that’s a really good volleyball team, and we did some things to make them look not so strong,” Schunzel said. “But I was worried about that team coming into the match because that’s [the] best team they’ve had since we’ve been here.”
In the match against USC Upstate, the ASUN player of the week for the last three weeks, Aniah Boyer, played but stayed quiet with eight kills and eight digs.
It was senior opposite hitter Kelly Marcinek who led the team with 12 kills. KSU’s dominant performance was a well-balanced attack between Liesl Engelbrecht and Sydni Shelton, who added 10 kills apiece.
On Saturday, the Owls played host to a thin homecoming crowd against NJIT (8-15, 0-7 ASUN) but were unfazed.
KSU began the first set focused and played that way throughout the match, winning all three sets 25-15, 25-17, 25-14.
Engelbrecht again continued her strong play by posting 11 kills, while Marcinek and Boyer each added eight kills.
The focus now shifts toward the reigning ASUN conference champion, Lipscomb University.
The Bison, one of KSU’s biggest challengers along the current win streak, look to redeem themselves after the two teams played in Nashville, a game the Owls won 3-2.
“They’re going to come in with absolute fire in their eyes,” Schunzel said. “Until someone knocks them off, they’re the kings, and that’s just how it is.”
Lipscomb features several quality players, but Schunzel compared outside hitter Carly Nausbaum, who leads the ASUN in kills with 305, to LeBron James.
“It’s like I told ESPN 3 when we were [in Nashville], if she gets 30 [kills] you’re in trouble … You don’t let LeBron score 50, but you’re also not going to keep LeBron to zero, so you just got to try to control her, you got to try and take some other people out of the game, but they’re really really good,” Schunzel said.
The Owls will look to take on the Bison at 7 p.m. Friday, Oct. 21 in the Convocation Center.