Hurricanes Host NC State and UNC in Volleyball This Weekend

Hurricanes Host NC State and UNC in Volleyball This Weekend

Oct. 16, 2008

Coral Gables, Fla. –

Complete Release in PDF Format Get Acrobat Reader

With four straight victories under their belt, the University of Miami volleyball team looks to remain hot this weekend as they host a pair of Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) opponents this weekend at the James L. Knight Sports Complex in Coral Gables, Fla. This weekend the `Canes welcome N.C. State on Friday (7 p.m.), followed by a visit from North Carolina on Saturday (6 p.m.).

The Hurricanes are sitting in a tie for second place in the current ACC standings at 5-2 alongside Clemson who does hold the head-to-head edge over the `Canes with their 3-0 victory in South Carolina two weeks ago.

Miami enters this weekend with a 10-match home winning streak dating back to consecutive wins last year against Boston College. The other two matches to end the regular season at home were victories against N.C. State and North Carolina, respectively. UM has a perfect 7-0 record at home this year. They have never been forced into a fifth set at home and own four sweeps inside the Knight Sports Complex.

“We are looking forward to being home with ACC matches,” stated UM head coach Nicole Lantagne Welch. “It is always great to play in your home gym with the crowd loud and behind you. Our team thrives off that environment.”

Tickets for this weekend’s action are still on sale, and can be purchased for just $5 (adult) and $3 (children). You can purchase them at the door, or by calling (305) 284-CANE. For more information, please log on to

Miami comes into this weekend with a 10-match home winning streak dating back to last year. This weekend proves to be tough competition, once again, as a pair of ACC teams grace the court at the James L. Knight Sports Complex. The first opponent is North Carolina State who enters at 9-13 overall (3-4 ACC). That is followed by a visit from North Carolina who is 10-8 overall (4-3 ACC).

Miami has no injuries to report, and the Hurricanes appear to be as healthy as ever along the front line of attack. This weekend’s matches serve as the second in as many weeks that UM has hosted a pair of ACC matches at the Knight Sports Complex. These will be matches four and five of a five-match home stand for the Orange and Green after “living” on the road for five consecutive matches in which they went 3-2.

In fact, Miami has claimed five 20-win campaigns in school history, those coming in 1977 (22-17), 1979 (33-14), 1980 (49-14-1), 2002 (27-6) and 2003 (22-9). However, only the 2002 and `03 seasons were a part of the NCAA Division I record books. Prior to that, the records were set as part of the former AIAW league. With just three wins in the next 13 matches, Miami will notch the third 20-win season for head coach Nicole Lantagne Welch.

After rolling off three consecutive wins, the Wolfpack of North Carolina State have dropped three of their last five matches, including a 3-1 decision this past Tuesday night against rival North Carolina. The Wolfpack are 2-3 on the road this season, and just 3-4 in conference play, and they sit with a 9-13 overall record on the year.

They are led by the play of Arlee Tamietti with 228 kills, while teammate Aiwane Iboaya sits behind her with 146 kills to her name. Tamietti also has 157 digs and 47 blocks. The setter for the Pack is Alex Smith with 659 assists under her belt.

The University of North Carolina Tar Heels enter this weekend’s matchup with a 10-8 overall record, and a 4-3 ACC mark. They downed rival N.C. State, 3-1 in their last match, and hold a better home record than away from home. The Tar Heels are 6-1 at home this year, but just 3-4 on the road.

The Tar Heels are paved by the duo of Lauren Prussing (163 kills) and Suzanne Haydel (150 kills). The setter is Stephanie Jansma who leads the squad with 462 assists. The defensive efforts are sparked by Brianna Eskola who leads the team with 311 digs, while teammate Haydel has 200 digs to boot.

The series has belonged solely to the Hurricanes since joining the Atlantic Coast Conference in 2004. Miami holds an 8-0 advantage in this series, having won four of those matches with 3-0 sweeps. NCSU has never taken a match against the `Canes to a fifth set.

Since Miami joined the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC), the Hurricanes and Tar Heels stand even at a 4-4 deadlock in this series. The `Canes have lost three of their last five meetings with the Tar Heels, but the two teams shared a season split last year. The home teams prevailed in each meeting in 2007. Ironically, the matches were sweeps both ways as well. Miami came into the ACC and swept the Heels in back-to-back matches in 2004 before UNC rolled off a sweep in 2006. The two foes split again in 2005.

The Hurricanes have surpassed their win total from the previous three seasons as they collected a pair of wins last weekend against Boston College and Maryland. With a victory this weekend, the `Canes could surpass yet another season’s winning streak if they move to 18 wins. That would be the most amount of wins in a single season since moving into the ACC, and the most since 2003 (22-9). The `Canes won just 14 matches in 2007, and just 12 in 2006. They had a 17-9 performance in 2004, and collected a 16-14 record in 2005.

Miami is currently ranked 21st as a team in service aces per set (1.74) nationally. Individually, the `Canes has a player ranked nationally as well with Cassie Loessberg ranking 41st in digs per set (4.56). Also ranked is the team in blocks per set (41st), digs per set (38th), hitting percentage (21st). UM is also ranked 37th in kills per set as well.