Oct. 25, 2012
By Andrew Jennette
ORLANDO, Fla. (UCFAthletics.com) -The UCF volleyball team wraps up the month of October with a pair of home matches as it welcomes Conference USA foes East Carolina and Marshall to Orlando this weekend. UCF can move into sole possession of third place in the C-USA standings heading into the stretch run with a pair of victories.
The Knights (9-13, 6-4) will take on the Pirates (1-20, 0-10) Friday night at 7 p.m., and then battle the Thundering Herd (16-8, 6-4) Sunday at noon.
The first opponent for the Black and Gold will be East Carolina. The Pirates are struggling offensively as they rank 12th in the conference in kills and attack percentage. However, ECU does feature stout defense as they rank fifth in the league in blocks with 2.06 per set. Senior middle blocker Kelly Derby leads the way as she ranks eight in C-USA with 1.00 blocks per set. UCF earned a sweep against ECU on Sept. 30 in Greenville, N.C.
After the tilt with the Pirates, the Knights will welcome their rival Marshall to The Venue. The Thundering Herd is currently tied with UCF at 6-4 in the conference standings and the winner of Sunday's match will have an advantage when it comes to conference tournament seeding later this year.
In their previous meeting, Marshall won a thrilling five-setter in Huntington, W.Va., despite redshirt junior Angelica Crump tying her career-high with 24 kills. The Knights held a 2-1 lead, but Marshall rallied in the last two sets to win the match.
Last weekend, UCF earned its first sweep in C-USA play as it defeated Southern Miss in a home-and-home series. The Knights took a 3-1 victory on Friday night at The Venue and came back with an impressive sweep in Hattiesburg on Sunday.
The weekend sweep helped redshirt sophomore Marie Reiterova earn C-USA Setter of the Week honors. Reiterova averaged a league-best 14.29 assists per set and helped the Knights hit .305 and .311 for the two matches. This was the first time in 2012 that the Knights hit better than .300 in back-to-back outings.