The Lady Vols earned a sweep of SEC foe Mississippi State this afternoon (25-22, 25-23, 25-19). More tonight.
UPDATE: Lily Felts was the only player on either side of the court to get double digit kills, with 11. Addisyn Rowe and Rocky Perinar had 9 each while Erica Treiber had 8. Treiber had a team leading 5 blocks as well. Callie Williams put up 21 assists and Sedona Hansen added 13 more. Madison Coulter had 10 digs.
The Lady Vols picked up their first sweep of league play this season.
For just the 25th time in the rally-scoring era, Tennessee won a match while hitting under .200.
UT defeated Alabama this evening in four sets (25-21, 25-14, 21-25, 25-20). More later.
UPDATE: In the first collegiate meeting between the Perinar sisters, they came out fairly even. Alabama’s Ginger Perinar had 16 kills, hit .164, put up 3 blocks, dug up 3 balls, and scored 18 points. Tennessee’s Rocky Perinar had 14 kills, hit .111, put up 5 blocks, dug up 5 balls, and scored 17 points.
Erica Treiber and Lily Felts led the Lady Vols with 16 kills. Alyssa Andreno added 9 more. Treiber had 6 blocks, Rowe had 5, and Andreno 4. Madison Coulter had an impressive night, picking up 24 digs. Giana Pellizzon had 13 and Felts 12. Sedona Hansen put up 41 assists and Callie Williams had 10.
At 4-1, Tennessee has their best conference start since 2011. And the team has won three SEC matches in a row for the first time since 2012.
Apologies for disappearing on you for a few days! I’ve been a little ill — actually left the Arkansas match early, which I don’t think I’ver ever done! But feeling 90% better today and looking forward to some volleyball tonight!
Normally I would do notes for the Wednesday and Sunday matches at the same time, but I am crazy busy today catching up with things missed while I was sick, so these notes will be slightly abbreviated and only cover tonight’s match.
UT is 35-18 all-time vs Alabama. The Lady Vols are 4-6 in their last 10 meetings, but 6-4 in their last 10 at home. The Tide have a 2 match winning streak — in both matches they trailed 2-1 before coming back to win in 5.
Despite the last two meetings going long, five-set matches are rare in this series — before last season only 5 such matches in 51 meetings. Including last year, 4 five-set matches have taken place between the teams in the rally-scoring era, all won by Alabama.
UT has had some issues in five-set matches the past couple of years, but hopefully things are turning around. This past week the team won their last 2 five-set match attempts since 2015, and their first two five-set matches in a row since 2012.
Tennessee freshman Raquel Perinar may get a chance to play against her sister tonight. Ginger Perinar is a junior outside hitter for Alabama, who ranks 9th in the league in kills per set. If I’m not mistaken the last time a Lady Vol faced off against her sister was on was November 23, 2012, when Tennessee’s Tiffany Baker played against Mississippi State and Chanelle Baker.
The Lady Vols are 2-3 in televised matches vs Alabama since 2001.
LINKS OF INTEREST
Lady Vol junior setter Sedona Hansen has a huge spread on the front page of the local Knoxville newspaper’s sports section today. In the piece Hansen, her mother, and coach Eve Rackham, discuss Hansen’s recent milestone, her support system, her growth as a setter, and more.
UT’s Erica Treiber has been named one of thirty players across the nation as a Senior CLASS Award candidate. The award “is presented each year to the outstanding senior NCAA Division I Student-Athlete of the Year across nine different sports” and “honors the attributes of NCAA Division I senior student-athletes in four areas: community, classroom, character and competition”. Tennessee has had two previous players earn recognition as a candidate: Nikki Fowler on the inaugural list in 2010, and Kayla Jeter in 2011.
Tennessee coach Eve Rackham talked with Brain Rice on the Eric Ainge Show this morning in WNML radio. They talked about UT in five-set matches, Treiber’s play, player buy-in, UT’s new handshake ritual, and local recruiting.
Tennessee is receiving votes in the latest Coaches Poll, coming in at an unofficial #33. UT is #27 in PrepVolleyball’s Top 64 ranking. They’ve broken in to the list at #30 in RichKern.com’s top 30 poll. The Lady Vols are #32 in the Pablo Ranking. And they’re receiving votes in the VolleyTalk Poll.
The first official NCAA RPI ranking is out, and UT comes in at #51.
According to the UT promotions page, tonight’s match is “Way Back Wednesday: 80’s” night and the “first 100 fans receive free tube socks”!
ALABAMA CRIMSON TIDE
13-4, 1-3 SEC
Wednesday, October 3, 8:00pm ET
Knoxville TN // TV: SEC Network // Online Stream // Live Stats
NATIONAL & CONFERENCE STATISTICAL RANKS
Tennessee got just their third five-set win in their last twelve attempts over three seasons, picking up a W against Missouri (25-20, 22-25, 25-18, 21-25, 15-9). More soon.
UPDATE: Erica Treiber led both teams with 19 kills and a .600 hitting percentage. Lily Felts had the second most kills of her season with 15. Tessa Grubbs, who left the match in the fourth set with an injury according to ESPN’s online streaming commentary, had 11 kills. Addisyn Rowe led UT in blocks with 6, with Alyssa Andreno not far behind with 4. Madison Coulter had 17 digs. Sedona Hansen, Giana Pellizzon, and Felts had 13 each. Felts earned her first career double-double with that effort. Hansen picked up her fourth in a row with 30 assists. Callie Williams put up 21 assists of her own.
UT’s 70 kills matches their season high, while their 84 points are the most this year.
Treiber has only had 8 hitting errors over the last 8 matches.
Along with their victory against the Tigers in their previous meeting last season, Tennessee now has their first ever two match winning streak vs Missouri.
The Lady Vols continue conference play with home matches vs Missouri and Arkansas this weekend.
Tennessee is 3-8 all-time vs Missouri. UT won the last meeting, but is 2-3 in matches in Knoxville
Tennessee is 19-20 all-time vs Arkansas. UT is 4-6 in their last ten meetings, but 6-4 in their last ten at home.
SEASON MIDPOINT STATS
This Saturday marks the half way point of the regular season in terms of matches played — 15 games before Saturday and 15 after. Instead of my usual weekly notes, here’s a (little bit early) look at some individual stats at the midpoint. Keep in mind that “per set” numbers are not official until the end of the player’s season or career. Some of these numbers are very impressive and to drive that point home I’ve included comparisons where applicable.
- Hitting .405 on the year so far, Treiber could become just the second Lady Vol ever to break .400 in a season. Only (first team All American and only UT player to have her number retired) Beverly Robinson has accomplished the feat so far, back in 1983.
- Treiber is also just behind Robinson in all-time career hitting percentage with .352, trailing the top spot by only .007.
- With 62 blocks so far, Treiber could finish the year in the UT all-time season top 20. Her current 1.19 blocks per set would also be a season top 20 number.
- With 431 career blocks, Treiber is already #6 all-time at UT. At her current pace she might be able to reach 500. She also stands at #3 right now in career blocks per set with 1.17, just behind (All American honorable mention) Sarah Blum and (All American honorable mention) Leah Hinkey.
- Treiber is 132 kills away from her 1,000th career kill — a number she could reach at her current pace. She would be the first player at Tennessee to reach that milestone since (second team All American and Olympic Bronze medalist) Kelsey Robinson in 2012.
- She’s 154 attacks away from reaching career 2,000.
- Only 5 players in the rally-scoring era have put down 30 or more aces in a season at UT. Just over half way there (with 16 aces) with just over half the season to go (with 16 matches) Treiber might be able to reach that goal.
- At 3.37 career kills per set, Grubbs currently ranks at #10 all-time at UT.
- Grubbs is on track to potentially reach 1,000 attack attempts this season. Only two different players have reached that mark at UT in the 2010s: (second team All American and Olympic Bronze medalist) Kelsey Robinson and Kanisha Jimenez.
- Her 8.57 attacks per set over her career are good for 11th place all-time at UT so far.
- With a career hitting percentage of .264, Grubbs is in 18th place all-time on the career list at UT.
- While splitting setting duties the past two seasons has lowered Hansen’s numbers, she still stands at #8 all-time at UT with 1,985 assists — 15 away from 2,000. Her career assists per set is 8.10, 10th all-time at UT for the moment.
- Hansen is climbing the digs chart too, with 712 all-time. That puts her at #27 on the UT career list and 12th on the career digs per set list so far with 2.91.
- With all those assists and digs, it’s no surprise Hansen is a prolific double-doubler. (Is that a word!?) Counting only double-doubles scored in rally-scoring matches, only 3 Lady Vols have more than her 39: (third team All American) Julie Knytych with 62, (third team All American) Nikki Fowler with 52, and (second team All American and Olympic Bronze medalist) Kelsey Robinson with 49.
- With 1,214 career digs, Schumacher ranks 9th all-time at UT. At her current pace, she might be crack the top 5. She’s 5th all-time at UT with 3.36 digs pet set, currently just below (SEC Defensive Player of the Year and All American honorable mention) Chloe Goldman, (All American honorable mention) Ellen Mullins, (SEC Defensive Player of the Year and third team All American) Amy Morris, and (second team All American and Olympic Bronze medalist) Kelsey Robinson.
- This season, her 3.37 digs per set are 19th all-time so far.
- With a .271 hitting percentage through her career so far, Andreno ranks 17th all-time at UT right now.
- Her 0.87 blocks per set in good for 15th on the UT career chart.
- Despite sharing setting duties the past two seasons with Hansen, Williams’ number are climbing steadily. She already ranks 17th all-time at UT with 781 assists. She could become just the 16th Lady Vol to join the 1,000 assists club as early as this season at her current pace. Her 5.14 assists per set is good for 15th place at UT all-time at the moment.
- Williams is also a more direct offensive threat with her quick setter dumps working very effectively. At her current pace Williams would rank 11th all-time at UT in hitting percentage with .289!
Madison Coulter currently stands at 20th on the UT season digs per set list with 3.33.
Addisyn Rowe currently stands at 23rd on the UT season hitting percentage list with .321.
- Rackham is 10-4 through her first 14 matches. Since 1978 (when complete UT result records become available), that’s the second best start by a new head coach in their first 14 games. Only Bob Berucci’s 11-3 start in 1978 tops it.
- Tennessee has had 4 new head coaches since the Coaches Poll was instituted in 1982. Until this year, a new UT volleyball coach had never defeated a ranked team — going 0-17, and only winning 3 individual sets. Rackham has won 2 out of 4 half way through her first season.
12-2, 2-0 SEC
Friday, September 28, 6:30pm ET
Knoxville TN // Online Stream // Live Stats
6-6, 0-2 SEC
Sunday, September 30, 1:30pm ET
Knoxville TN // Online Stream // Live Stats
NATIONAL & CONFERENCE STATISTICAL RANKS
#20 Kentucky got a hard fought four set win over a feisty Lady Vols squad in Knoxville this afternoon (25-17, 20-25, 25-22, 25-23).
Tennessee had three players hit over .300 (with double digit attacks): Erica Treiber at .364 with 9 kills, Rocky Perinar at .346 with 11 kills, and Tessa Grubbs at .316 and 15 kills. (UK had no player match that.) Treiber had 5 blocks, Lily Felts added 4, and Addisyn Rowe contributed 3 more. Callie Williams put up 24 assists. Sedona Hansen had 21 while picking up a double double with 10 digs. Madison Coulter smashed her career high with 25 digs — the 28th most at UT all-time in a four-set match.
The teams were almost even in every stat: 55-55 in kills (UT – UK), 25-24 in attack errors, .184 to .185 in hitting percentage, 53-49 in assists, 66-68 in digs, and 10 to 11 in blocks. The only stat that was not evenly matched were serving: 2-6 in aces.
In three of their four losses this season, Tennessee has been up by 6 points in a set only to allow the other team to come back and win it.
The Lady Vols picked up a win in their first conference match of the season, defeating Auburn 3-1 (22-25, 25-12, 25-21, 25-13).
The team had a season high .404 hitting percentage and 70 kills. Their kill total was the 13th most in the rally-scoring era at UT in a four set match. And their hitting number was the 18th highest in any match during that time.
Three players reached double digit kills: Tessa Grubbs with 17, Addisyn Rowe with 13, and Alyssa Andreno with 12. Two other players were one kill short of that threshold with 9: Lily Felts and Erica Treiber. (If those two had had one more kill each, Tennessee would have had their first match since 2012 with five players in double digits.)
Four players hit over .400 (with at least 10 attacks): Rowe with .571, Andreno with .550, Treiber with .421, and Grubbs with .414. Only three matches in the rally-scoring era at UT have had more players hitting that high.
Treiber and Rocky Perinar led the team with 4 blocks each. Four players had double digit digs: Madison Coulter with 16, Felts with 15, Giana Pellizzon with 13, and Sedona Hansen with 10. Hansen earned her 6th double-double of the year with 27 assists. Callie Williams was just behind with 25.
For the second time this season UT held an opponent to just 2 team blocks — the 10th lowest number in matches since 2001.
Tennessee made it to 10 wins in 13 matches this year. That’s the best they’ve done since 2015. The team has only reached that milestone faster 9 times since 1978.
The Lady Vols start conference play with a weekend on the road at Auburn and at home vs #20 Kentucky.
Tennessee is 30-20-1 all-time vs Auburn. UT is 3-7 in their last ten meetings, and 5-5 in their last ten at Auburn.
Tennessee is 30-48 all-time vs Kentucky. UT is 2-8 in their last ten meetings, and 4-6 in their last ten in Knoxville.
Since 1978, the Lady Vols are 17-16 in their first SEC game of the year. They’ve lost their last 6 conference openers in a row.
Sophomore Madison Coulter will face her former Maryville High School and K2 teammate Chesney McClellan when the Lady Vols take on Auburn.
Prior to this season, Tennessee had won 2 of their last 20 matches vs ranked opponents. In 2018, the team has matched that total, winning 2 out of 3 matches vs ranked opponents.
By the time the team hit the court at Thompson-Boling Arena this Sunday, they will not have played at home in 22 days. This is just the 5th time in program history UT will have had over three weeks between home matches.
The Lady Vols are 3-5 since 2001 in televised matches vs Kentucky. They are 2-3 when the Wildcats are ranked higher.
Tennessee is receiving votes in the latest Coaches Poll, coming in at an unofficial #39. UT is #41 in PrepVolleyball’s Top 64 ranking. They’re #36 in the RichKern.com Poll. The Lady Vols are #38 in the Pablo Ranking. And they’re receiving votes in the VolleyTalk Poll.
Volleyball Magazine lists Tennessee as one of their “SEC surprises”.
Check out the UT promotions page for info on free tickets and autograph offers at the Sunday match.
2018: 7-3 // 2017: 15-12, 8-10 SEC
Friday, September 21, 8:00pm ET
Auburn AL // Online Stream // Live Stats
#20 KENTUCKY WILDCATS
2018: 6-4 // 2017: 29-4, 17-1 SEC
Sunday, September 23, 1:00pm ET
Knoxville TN // TV: SEC Network // Online Stream // Live Stats
NATIONAL & CONFERENCE STATISTICAL RANKS
The Lady Vols improved to 9-3 this weekend with wins over Ohio State and Evansville and a loss to Dayton.
Tessa Grubbs had 23 kills. Erica Treiber had 11, while hitting .550 with no errors; she led the team with 4 blocks and also had a career high 4 aces and a career high matching 9 digs. Breana Jeter had 10 kills. She and Addisyn Rowe had 3 blocks each. Sedona Hansen earned a double-double with 32 assists and 11 digs. Callie Williams added 19 assists.
Since 2001, only 12 opposing players have scored a triple double vs Tennessee. Dayton’s Brooke Westbeld is the second Flyer to join that list, and the first player since 2011 to do so.
All three matches between these teams in the rally scoring era have gone to five sets.
vs Ohio State
Grubbs led UT’s attack with 15 kills. Treiber had 12 again with no errors for a .600 hitting percentage. She matched her career high set the night before with 4 more aces. Rowe had 7 blocks. Madison Coulter had 10 digs. Hansen put up 31 assists.
In the final set Tennessee ended the match with 9 points in a row, the last 3 of which were aces by Treiber.
With 8 losses and not a single win over the Buckeyes in program history, UT ended one of their current longest losing streaks.
The win was the team’s second over a Big Ten opponent this year. Prior to 2018, the team had lost their last 10 in a row against the conference. They hadn’t won twice in a single year since the 2005 Final Four season.
Rocky Perinar had 13 kills, hit .500, and put down 5 blocks. Grubbs had 10 kills. Treiber had 5 blocks and Rowe added 4 more. Hansen had 33 assists and 11 digs for the double-double. With 5 kills, she matched her career high.
According to the official stats, Tennessee had their first ball handling error of the year during this match — though I’m assuming that has to be wrong!
Treiber was impressive with just 2 errors over 53 attacks this weekend. With 29 kills, she hit .509. She also notched 9 aces over the three matches.
Grubbs had 48 kills on 102 attacks with just 12 errors for a .353 hitting percentage.
Rowe had 14 blocks while also hitting .349.
Hansen was a single dig shy of picking up a double-double in all three matches this weekend.
Tennessee wraps up the out of conference portion of their schedule with a 3-0 (25-14, 25-15, 25-18) win over Evansville. More tomorrow.
The Lady Vols bounced back from yesterday’s loss, defeating Ohio State this afternoon 3-1. More tomorrow.
The Lady Vols are on the road for the second weekend in a row, this time heading to Ohio for the Flyer Invitational hosted by the University of Dayton.
Tennessee is 2-2 all-time vs Dayton. Their first meeting was a loss back in 1974. UT has won the last two meetings, five-set matches in 2008 and 2011.
Tennessee is 0-8 all-time vs Ohio State. Their first meeting was in 1974. Their last meeting was a 3-2 loss in 2011.
Tennessee is 2-0 all-time vs Evansville. Both meetings were 3-1 wins, in 2014 and 2015.
Since 2001, UT is 9-1 vs the Atlantic 10 Conference, 6-15 vs the Big Ten, and 4-2 vs the Missouri Valley Conference.
Tennessee faced both Dayton and Ohio State for the first time at the Dayton Invitational in 1974. They finished the tournament in third place among the five teams.
Dayton has played 3 ranked opponents already this season, losing them all but coming within two points of knocking off #12 Washington.
Ohio State has faced 3 SEC opponents this year, going 2-1 with wins over Texas A&M and Missouri and a loss to Mississippi.
Evansville has already played 3 other matches vs Tennessee teams so far this season, going 2-1 with wins over Tennessee Tech and Tennessee State and a loss to Austin-Peay.
The Lady Vols’ last two meetings vs OSU were also the only times the teams have met in the NCAA Tournament. The Buckeyes knocked UT out both times and both in 15-12 five-set matches, in the first round in 2011 and in the Sweet Sixteen in 2004.
UT’s 8 match losing streak vs Ohio State matches their current longest run of losses to a team. The Lady Vols also currently have 8 match losing streaks vs Texas and Texas A&M.
Dayton will be the 5th different Ohio city Tennessee has played in in the last 10 years. They visited Cincinnati in 2009 and 2013, Athens in 2010, and Cleveland and Kent in 2016.
That last stat shouldn’t be a surprise, considering the volleyball talent in the state that UT wants to recruit. In the last 10 years, 6 Lady Vols have come from Ohio. Of those, 4 were Senior Aces, 2 were All-America honorees, and 3 are currently on the roster (Breana Jeter, Danielle Mahaffey, and Stephanie Spencer).
Tennessee freshman Rocky Perinar and Dayton’s Ali Papesh were high school teammates and co-captains at Minooka Community High School in Illinois.
LINKS OF INTEREST
Tennessee is receiving votes in the latest Coaches Poll, coming in at an unofficial #34. UT is also #34 in PrepVolleyball’s Top 64 ranking. They’re #36 in the RichKern.com Poll. And the Lady Vols are #45 in the Pablo Ranking.
Sophomore Madison Coulter headlines an article in the Blount County Daily Times about how area athletes are faring in the college ranks.
2018: 6-4 // 2017: 23-8, 13-1 A-10
Friday, September 14, 7:00pm ET
Dayton OH // Online Stream // Live Stats
OHIO STATE BUCKEYES
2018: 8-1 // 2017: 15-16, 8-12 Big Ten
Saturday, September 15, 10:30am ET
Dayton OH // Live Stats
EVANSVILLE PURPLE ACES
2018: 6-5 // 2017: 10-20, 4-14 MVC
Saturday, September 15, 4:30pm ET
Dayton OH // Live Stats
The Lady Vols get their second win over a ranked opponent this season after defeating #16 San Diego in four sets (22-25, 25-20, 25-22, 25-22). Much more soon!
UPDATE: Rocky Perinar, who hadn’t played a point prior to this road trip, had another impressive night leading the team with 15 kills. She hit .387 on the match. Tessa Grubbs was just behind her with 14 kills. Erica Treiber had 11 kills while hitting .474. Breana Jeter led the team in blocks with 7. Addisyn Rowe hit .353 and had 6 blocks. Sedona Hansen put up 26 assists and had 9 digs. Callie Williams had 21 assists. And Madison Coulter back in the libero jersey had 12 digs.
Tennessee cleaned up their service, going from 3.33 errors per set yesterday to 1.5 today.
The Lady Vols held the Toreros to 6 team blocks. Only #17 Washington had held them to fewer this season.
The last time Tennessee defeated two ranked opponents in a season was 2012.
UT STORY / USD STORY
There seems to be some confusion when it comes to this weekend’s opponent — San Diego. I’ll be honest I don’t think anyone knows what it means anymore. Scholars maintain that the translation was lost hundreds of years ago. But that’s not what I’m talking about!
In my notes I mentioned that UT and San Diego were meeting for the first time. In UT’s official notes, they say UT and San Diego played once before — a 3-1 win (15-9, 15-5, 12-15, 15-12) on October 11, 1980. And San Diego’s notes say that they are 0-1 all time vs the Lady Vols with the single meeting occurring on October 11, 1980.
So I’m wrong, right? Well, first of all, being right or wrong isn’t the point. Secondly, I don’t think I’m wrong!
Something important you need to know is that there are three different NCAA Division I schools with “San Diego” in their name. There is the team we are playing this weekend, the University of San Diego (USD). Then there is the University of California, San Diego (UC San Diego or UCSD). And lastly there is San Diego State University (SDSU).
According to the UT record book, they played at the San Diego Invitational at San Diego State on September 19th & 20th of 1980. At the tournament they lost to SDSU. The day after the tournament, again according to UT, the team played UC San Diego and won 3-1 (15-9, 15-5, 12-15, 15-12). Finally, according to the record book, UT was at a tournament at Florida State on October 11th.
I double checked all this info with other sources to confirm. San Diego State’s record book has Tennessee at their tournament on those dates. UC San Diego’s record book has UT there on the right date. And the University of San Diego record book says the Lady Vols never played them. One last check with the local newspaper archives also confirms the information as listed here.
It’s completely understandable why Tennessee mistakingly said we’ve played San Diego before, because of the confusion with the names. What I don’t understand at all is why USD thinks we’ve met when their own record book says otherwise! Agree to disagree, San Diego.