Utah State volleyball will be hosting Western Athletic Conference newcomer UTSA on Monday, Oct. 15, and USU Athletics will be offering a special $5 “Family Pack” for the 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.
Monday marks the first time UTSA will be visiting Logan, as the Aggies and Roadrunners have only met three other times, twice on neutral courts and then earlier this season on Oct. 15 in San Antonio, with USU beating UTSA in four sets.
Utah State is currently on its first-ever, five-match WAC win streak. The five-match WAC win streak is USU's longest since a 2001 when the Aggies won six Big West Conference matches in a row.
At the midway point of the WAC schedule, USU sits atop the conference standings with an 8-1 conference record and has an overall record of 13-6, after sweeping San Jose State Saturday night. UTSA brings a 12-7 overall and 5-4 WAC ledger into Monday night's match. While the Aggies will be wrapping up three matches in a seven-day span, as well as concluding a five-match homestand with Monday's match, the Roadrunners will be ending a three-match in five-day road trip.
Utah State is 5-0 so far this season against WAC newcomers, beating UTSA (3-1) and Texas State (3-0) on Sept. 13 and 15, respectively, as well as Seattle (3-0) on Sept. 20, UT Arlington (3-0) on Sept. 29 and Denver (3-2) on Oct. 6.
The Aggies are 3-0 all-time against the Roadrunners. Prior to this season, the last time the two teams had met was in 2002 at the Longhorn Classic, hosted by the University of Texas in Austin, Texas, with USU collecting a 3-0 win. The Aggies and Roadrunners first squared off in 1994 at the Gonzaga Invitational, with USU winning, 3-1.
As a team, USU leads the WAC in team blocking, averaging 3.14 blocks per set overall, as well as leading the league in conference only matches with a 3.14 bps average. The Aggies' blocking also helps them lead the league in opponent hitting percentage, as USU's opposition is hitting .158 overall and .127 in WAC only matches.
UTSA leads the league overall in kills per set with 13.81, as well as WAC only matches with 13.75. The Roadrunners also have a WAC-leading assists average with 12.74 assists per set overall and a league-leading 12.94 aps average in WAC only matches. UTSA is also first in the WAC in digs per set overall with 13.84, as well as tops in the league for conference only matches with 19.22 dps.
Redshirt-freshman middle blocker Elle Brainard (Saratoga Springs, Utah), leads USU and is second in the WAC both overall and in league only matches for blocking, averaging 1.51 blocks per set in all matches and 1.52 bps in league matches. Brainard also is sixth in the WAC for overall attack percentage (.327). The Aggies' offensive attack is led by senior opposite side hitter Shay Sorensen (North Ogden, Utah) with a 2.97 kills per set average, ranking seventh overall. Sorensen is also eighth in the league in conference only matches with 3.15 kps.
UTSA is led by junior outside hitter McKensie Adams, who is third in the WAC overall with 3.96 kps, as well as second in league only matches with 4.19 kps.
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.
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.
Utah State volleyball tickets are available by contacting the USU Ticket Office at the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum or by calling 1-888-USTATE-1 or (435) 797-0305.
Doug Hoffman is the assistant athletic director for Utah State University Athletic Media Relations.