PISCATAWAY, N.J. (August 28, 2014) – The Rutgers women’s volleyball team opens its 2014 campaign at the Falcon Classic hosted by Air Force in Colorado Springs, Colorado on Friday, Aug. 29. RU will first face Winthrop at 1:00 p.m. on Friday, followed SIUE at 10:00 p.m. The Scarlet Knights wrap up the weekend against host Air Force on Saturday, Aug. 30 at 2:00 p.m.
Winthrop – Aug. 29, 1 p.m.
SIUE – Aug. 29, 10 p.m.
Air Force – Aug. 30, 2 p.m.
Rutgers enters its first season as a member of the Big Ten Conference. The Scarlet Knights look to capitalize on the depth of experience and talent on the roster, which includes 11 letterwinners and five newcomers. The team will focus on the progression of continued growth from last year’s campaign.
Last season, junior outside Alex Lassa (Eagle, Colo.) led RU in kills (383) and finished second on the team in digs (311). The Colorado native took 1,336 total attempts on the year, setting a new single-season record for Rutgers. Junior defensive specialist Ali Schroeter (Bakersfield, Calif.) joined her classmate in the record books after posting the most digs in a single-season with 544.
Winthrop enters the season after posting an overall record of 17-13 and 7-7 mark in Big South action. Last year, senior setter Jessie Vicic broke the Big South Conference single-season record for assists (1,355). Head coach Bruce Atkinson enters his second season at the helm of the program.
It will be the first meeting between the teams.
SIUE is coming off a 2013 record of 14-18 and 8-8 in the Ohio Valley. The Cougars finished as runner-up in the OVC Tournament. The squad returns nine letterwinners, including four starters and libero. SIUE is under the direction of fourth-year head coach Leah Johnson.
The Scarlet Knights and Cougars will meet for the first time.
Air Force finished the 2013 season with an overall record of 8-24 and 5-15 mark in the Mountain West Conference. Air Force returns 12 letterwinners, including four starters and libero. The Falcons are led by fifth-year head coach Matt McShane.
Saturday marks the third meeting between the squads. The last time the teams met was in 1983 on a neutral site at the Florida Invitational, where Rutgers took home the win in both games played.
Following the Falcon Classic, Rutgers will travel to South Orange, New Jersey for the Seton Hall Tournament on Friday, Sept. 5 to Saturday, Sept. 6. The Scarlet Knights will compete in three-consecutive road tournaments before hosting their first home event on Friday, Sept. 19 against Akron at 12:30 p.m. to start off the Rutgers Tournament.
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