USU volleyball: Aggie volleyball hosts Spartans on Saturday

By Doug Hoffman

For the Deseret News

Published: Saturday, Oct. 13 2012 11:41 a.m. MDT

Returning to Western Athletic Conference action, Utah State volleyball will host San Jose State on Saturday, Oct. 13. The match will start at 7 p.m. at the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum. In addition to it being the second match of USU's three-match in six days stretch, it is also the fourth of its five-match homestand, its longest since hosting six-straight home matches in 2000.

Saturday's volleyball match will also be the second half of a pair of Aggie-Spartans battles on the day as the USU and SJSU football teams are meeting in San Jose, Calif., Saturday afternoon.

USU volleyball is currently on a four-match WAC win streak and in pursuit of its first five-straight WAC win streak in its eight years in the league, as well as its first stretch of five conference wins in a row since 2001 when the Aggies won six Big West Conference matches in a row. The Aggies are currently atop the WAC standings with a 7-1 league mark and a 12-6 overall record. SJSU enters Saturday's match with an 8-10 overall and 4-4 WAC mark. This is the first of two meetings on the season between the Aggies and Spartans and will conclude USU's first half of its WAC schedule.

SJSU leads the all-time series, 18-12-1, but USU has won four of the last six meetings. The two teams split last year’s meetings, with the home team holding court and earning the victory both times. The Aggies swept the Spartans in the match-up in Logan on Sept. 22, 2011, and SJSU countered with a four-set win on Oct. 19, 2011 in San Jose.

Saturday will also be USU head coach Grayson DuBose’s 200th career match coached at Utah State, as he has a 104-95 (.523) record at the helm of the Aggies in his seventh year.

Utah State is led by senior opposite side hitter Shay Sorensen (North Ogden, Utah), who is seventh in the WAC in overall kills per set (2.99) and tied for eighth in WAC only kills per set (3.20), as well as fifth for overall points per set (3.59) and tied for sixth for conference only matches for points per set (3.90). Sorensen has logged a double-double in seven of USU’s last 11 matches and has a team-leading eight on the season, including registering a new career-high 22 kills to go with 10 digs in Tuesday's match.

SJSU is led by sophomore middle blocker Mary Alice O’Reilly, who is sixth in WAC overall kills per set (3.10), while ranking fifth in league only matches (3.33). She is also fourth in the conference in overall hitting percentage (.336), while ranking sixth in league only matches (.345). O’Reilly also is eighth in overall blocks per set (1.00).

Utah State will be continuing its "Dig for a Cure" campaign as part of Breast Cancer Awareness Month and to help raise money for Logan Regional Hospital Foundations's Breast Cancer Services. Pledges are now being gathered for every dig the Aggies make during their seven home matches in October as part of USU's "Dig for a Cure" campaign. Pledges can be made in any amount and flat donations are also accepted and appreciated. Pledge and donation forms will be available at the matches at the marketing/promotions table on the west concourse of the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum.

The Utah State Campus Store is donating 20 percent of all pink merchandise sales during the month of October to Aggie volleyball's "Dig for a Cure" campaign.

USU's homestand concludes Monday, Oct. 15, when the Aggies host WAC newcomer UTSA in a 7 p.m. match. The Roadrunners will be making their first-ever visit to Logan.

Utah State Athletics is offering a special $5 “Family Pack” for Monday night’s match. The “Family Pack” will include two adult tickets and two youth tickets. Additional tickets will be regular priced. This special is only available Monday night at the USU Ticket Office before the match.

After road matches at Idaho on Thursday, Oct. 18, and at Seattle on Saturday, Oct. 20, USU returns home to host UT Arlington on Thursday, Oct. 25, and Louisiana Tech on Saturday, Oct. 27. All Aggie home matches start at 7 p.m.

Doug Hoffman is the assistant athletic director for Utah State University Athletic Media Relations.

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