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Photo: UTEP Athletics
Photo: UTEP Athletics

Miner Volleyball set to start CUSA play today

The UTEP volleyball team kicks off the 2015 Conference USA season on the road early this week. The Miners will face off against Charlotte on Monday at 4 p.m. (MT) in Charlotte N.C.

This past weekend the Orange and Blue went 2-1 at the Bradley Invitational in Peoria, Ill. The Miners beat Southeast Missouri St. in a 3-2 match and Bradley in a 3-0 match.

UTEP’s defense was led by Lindsey Larson while the offense was led by Coline Coessens.

Larson notched 112 assists, 44 digs, 19 kills and nine blocks while Coessens registered 48 kills, 37 digs and seven blocks. Their performance earned these Miners a spot on the Bradley Invitational All-Tournament team.

UTEP is now 6-8 as it enters conference play this week.  For live stats visit: http://stats.statbroadcast.com/broadcast/?id=99549

SCOUTING CHARLOTTE

Series: UTEP has won three of the nine matches against Charlotte.

The last meeting between the two squads was in 2014 when the Orange and Blue fell to the 49ers in a five-set match. At the start of the 2015 season, Charlotte was picked to finish 10th in Conference USA out of 13 squads. The 49ers are now 3-7 heading into conference play.

49ERS NOTABLES:

Leading Charlotte’s offense is Sarah McDonald while the defense is led by Britney Leigh Held and Semen Sen.

McDonald leads the squad in kills with 109 averaging 3.2 per set while adding 63 digs and 11 blocks. Held has registered 352 assists, 19 blocks and 87 digs while Sen has recorded 28 blocks, 91 kills and 87 digs.

MINERS IN THE NATIONAL STATS

UTEP ranks first nationally with 18.95 digs per set and 834 team digs, according to the NCAA stats released Sept. 16. The Miners are also third in team attacks per set (39.66). Individually, Lindsey Larson is 27th with nationally 407 total assists. Coline Coessens is 28th with 439 total attacks while Maddie Morgan is 31st with 47 total blocks.

TOUGH BLOCKERS
UTEP’s presence at the net has been felt the first three weeks of the season. The Miners rattled off 27.5 total blocks at the TCU Tournament, 35 at the Bruin Invitational, 33 when co-hosting the Borderland Invitational and 30 at the Bradley Invitational this past weekend. The 130 total blocks equate to a 2.29 blocks per set average, which is the sixth best in Conference USA. This is the highest average it has achieved since 2012 when UTEP averaged 2.36 blocks per set. Team leaders Xitlali Herrera and Jean Horton became AVCA Division I All-American Team honorable mentions that season.

MINERS RANKED IN CONFERENCE

Freshman Kylie Baumgartner and Maddie Morgan rank fifth and eighth in Conference USA, respectively, in blocks per set with 1.12 and 1.05. Junior setter Lindsey Larson is seventh in the league with 9.11 assists per set. As a whole, the Miners lead the conference with 18.81 digs per set and are sixth with 2.30 blocks per set.

DIGGING DEEP
The Miners have had two matches where they recorded 100 or more digs during the 2015 season. At the Belmont Bruin Invitational, UTEP notched 104 digs in the five-set victory against South Alabama (9/5). The squad was led by senior defensive specialist Ashley Peak who tallied 31 digs while four more Miners (Coline Coessens, Naomi Whitehair, Lindsey Larsonn, Dalainee Perry) registered 10 or more digs. When co-hosting the Borderland Invitational, UTEP registered 123 digs. Peak led the pack once again with 35 while Larson added 27.

UTEP SWEEP

UTEP picked up its first sweep of the 2015 season at the Bradley Invitational this past weekend. The Miners claimed a 3-0 victory over the tournament host, Bradley (9/19). The last time the Orange and Blue notched a 3-0 win was a year ago on the same day (9/19/14) against Nevada at the Denver Invitational.

COESSENS CRUSHING IT
A member of the 2014 Conference USA All-Freshman Team, Coline Coessens has been doing it all for the Orange and Blue in 2015. The sophomore leads the team with 183 kills, ranks second in assists (27) and fourth in digs (164) and in blocks (32). Coessens has registered seven double-doubles in 2015.

DIGS LEADING THE NATION

The Miners lead the nation with 18.81 digs per set. If the Miners continue this trend it would be the most since 1991 (19.33). This is the most digs UTEP has averaged since head coach Holly Watts was hired. Under Watts’ helm, in 2013 UTEP averaged 14.6, and in 2014 it averaged 15.2.

ALL-TOURNAMENT TEAM SELECTIONS

UTEP rounded up the Bradley Invitational this past weekend in Peoria, Ill. Lindsey Larson and Coline Coessens were named to the All-Tournament team as they led the Miners to a 2-1 finish. Larson notched 112 assists, 44 digs, 19 kills and nine blocks while Coessens hammered 48 kills, 37 digs and seven blocks.

Author: UTEP Athletics

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