BUFFALO, NY - The University at Buffalo volleyball team will return to Alumni Arena for the first time since the opening weekend of the season this Friday and Saturday as the Bulls begin Mid-American Conference play against Ohio and Kent State. UB will face the Bobcats on Friday evening, followed by the Golden Flashes on Saturday. Both matches start at 6pm and are free to the public.
The Bulls are coming off one of their best non-conference seasons as they enter the contest with a 7-4 record, including their first ever victory over a Big Ten program in Rutgers as well as a win at Georgetown. The Bulls are led by sophomore outside hitter Polina Prokudina, who has been named MAC East Offensive Player of the Week in two of the last three weeks. She has 180 kills on the year, which is second in the MAC. Prokudina has had at least 26 kills in a match three times this year, and she has also added 104 digs and 11 aces. Freshman Andrea Mitrovic is second on the team with 145 kills and second with 123 digs. Sophomore Scout McLerran is coming off a career best 65 assists against Appalachian State and she is averaging 10.32 assists per set.
Ohio enters its MAC opener with a 6-8 non-conference record and has lost its last five matches, including its last match to #2 Penn State. The Bobcats have been decimated by injuries this season as they have lost several top players. Lizzie Stephens is leading the attack for the Bobcats with 185 kills and 21 service aces. Tia Jimerson is second on the team with 157 kills and she leads Ohio with 49 blocks.
Kent State will face Akron on Friday evening before making the trip to Buffalo on Saturday. The Golden Flashes went 2-9 in non-conference play, picking up wins over Omaha and most recently Fort Wayne in a five-set contest. Prior to their final match against Fort Wayne, the first 10 matches for Kent State all went three sets. Kelsey Bittinger leads Kent State with 131 kills, averaging 3.74 kills per set. She is the only Golden Flashes player averaging more than 2.00 kills per set. Challen Geraghty leads the team with 204 digs and Natalie Tagala leads them with 220 assists.
For those that are unable to attend, live video and live stats links can be found at UBBulls.com.