SALT LAKE CITY – The Westminster College women's volleyball team will begin the 2012 season this weekend at the Paul Elliott Invitational hosted by Southern Oregon University. Every match of the tournament will be played at McNeal Pavilion on the SOU campus in Ashland, Ore.
The Griffins will begin the year against Oregon Tech Friday at 11 a.m. Following that match will be one at 5 p.m. against UC-Merced to complete day one. Saturday's action begins with a 1 p.m. match against SOU and concludes at 5 p.m. against Viterbo. Live video streaming and live stats will be available for all four Griffin matches with links available on the Griffins' website.
Westminster is coming off a 2011 season that saw the Griffins go 11-15 and finish fourth in the Frontier Conference. The Griffins return eight players from that squad, including all six starters and the libero. Among that group is first team all-Frontier performer, Ashley Marchant, and the Frontier Libero of the Year, Kyndall Kordakis.
Westminster also welcomes seven newcomers to the 2012 squad. Among the group is JC transfer Jovana Sisovic, who was an all-conference performer for Feather River College last season. Freshmen Rachel Enloe, Alyse Horton and Rachel Wyss are all Utah products who join the Griffins this season.
With every starter and eight total players returning in 2012, Westminster brings almost 90 percent of its total statistical output from a season ago. The Griffins will have over 90 percent returning in kills, assists, blocks and points with over 80 percent in service aces and 79.5 percent in digs. The 2011 leader in every statistical category is back in 2012.
The Griffins four opponents at this week's tournament went a combined 76-39 last season. Southern Oregon lost in the first round of the NAIA National Championships after advancing through pool play. Viterbo won its regular season conference championship and missed the national tournament after losing in the championship game of its conference tournament.
Westminster has only faced Oregon Tech and Southern Oregon in the program's history. The team is 0-1 all-time against OIT with a 1-2 mark against SOU.