ORLANDO, Fla. (UCFKnights.com) – After a milestone-filled weekend at The Venue last weekend, the UCF volleyball team will hit the road for a pair of matches in the American Athletic Conference this weekend. The Knights (16-3) will put their 13-match winning streak on the line with trips to ECU on Friday at 7 p.m. and Cincinnati on Sunday at 1 p.m.
Here are five things to know heading into the ECU and Cincinnati weekend:
LAST TIME OUT
The Knights notched a pair of four-set victories over Temple and UConn last weekend in The Venue. Head coach Todd Dagenais became just the second in program history to reach the 200-wins milestone with a 3-1 decision over Temple on Friday. On Sunday, libero Jordan Pingel needed 21 digs to become the first player in UCF history to reach the 2,000-dig plateau. She finished with 25 against UConn. The victory over the Huskies was also the 1,000th in program history, making the Knights just the 24th team to cross that threshold.
UCF will battle for American Athletic Conference supremacy against the Bearcats. Both clubs enter the weekend undefeated in league play at 7-0, two matches ahead of Tulsa in third place. The two sides are 1-2 in the conference in hitting percentage and kills. The rematch between UCF and Cincinnati will be on Nov. 9 in The Venue as a part of Alumnae Weekend. For more information about the all-generations homecoming, click here.
REPPING IN THE POLL
With a pair of victories, the Knights moved up in the NCAA RPI to No. 13, due in large part to their 13-match winning streak. The Black and Gold also made their second appearance of the year in the American Volleyball Coaches Association Top-25 earlier in the week. UCF received five votes in comparison to the 39 votes for Cincinnati.
Rookie McKenna Melville continues to be one of the top offensive players in the country. The Eagan, Minn., native ranks second in The American in kills per set, points, total kills and points per set. Melville is up to 4.2 kills per set at a .249 clip. The freshman is up to 12 double-doubles.
>> ECU is 12-6 on the year and 4-3 in The American, tied for fourth place with Wichita State. Setter Shelby Martin, who ranks third in the league with 8.7 assists per set, has done a good job of moving the ball around the attack, as opponents are averaging just 1.67 blocks per set.
>> With the return of outside Jordan Thompson, Cincinnati flew out of the gates to a 17-4 record. Thompson, who missed last year through injury, leads the nation in total kills, total attacks, points, points per set and kills per set. She has accounted for 532 of the Bearcats’ 1,169 kills this season.
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