PITTSBURG, Kan. - RELEASE FROM PITTSBURG STATE ATHLETICS:
After an eight-day mid-season regrouping break, the Pittsburg State University Volleyball team will return to the court for two Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletic Association (MIAA) matches at John Lance Arena. The Gorillas will play the Emporia State Hornets on Friday starting at 6 p.m. before hosting the No. 5 Washburn Ichabods on Saturday at 2 p.m.
Scouting the Gorillas
- The Gorillas are coming off a 1-1 Tuesday-Thursday split last week.
- The Gorillas overcame an early 2-0 lead by Newman in Wichita on Tuesday to win 3-2 before falling in three sets to Missouri Western on Thursday in St. Joesph.
- Head Coach Jen Gomez, who is in her third season at the helm, enters the match with a 39-69 record.
- The Gorillas are hitting .183 on the season while holding opponents to a .167 attacking percentage.
- Senior outside hitter Erika Ivkov (Ward, Colo.) leads Pitt State with 18 service aces, 182 digs and 161 kills, all are team-highs.
- Saturday's match will be the fourth team that the Gorillas will play this season that is ranked in the Top-25 where they are 0-3 and have only mustered up one set win (1-9).
Scouting the Hornets
- Emporia State enters the weekend with a 5-10 overall record and a 1-6 MIAA record. The Gorillas had a nine-game losing streak before defeating Newman last Saturday in four sets.
- The Hornets are coached by Bing Xu, who is in his 15th season on the bench. He has a 286-179 overall record and a 146-108 MIAA record while at ESU.
- The Hornets are led by junior hitter Yuchen Du (Beijing, China), who has 168 kills on the season.
Scouting the Ichabods
- The Ichabods enter with a 13- 1 overall record and a 5-1 MIAA record and will be a tough team to tackle as they enter the week as the No. 5 team in the Oct. 7th American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) poll. This is the third week in a row that they have been ranked No. 5 and the 16th straight week (dating back to Sept. 17, 2018) to be ranked in the Top-25.
- The Ichabods are coached by Chris Herron, who is in his 18th season and holds an overall record of 517-104 and is 241-60 in MIAA matches. He is 29-5 against Pitt State.
- Washburn is currently tied for second along with No. 10 Northwest Missouri (12-2, 5-1 MIAA) behind No. 3 Nebraska-Kearney (16-0, 7-0 MIAA).
- The Ichabods are led by junior outside hitter Genna Berg (Blue Springs, Mo.) who was named the MIAA Co-Hitter of the week for the second consecutive week. She has five double-double performances on the season.
- The No. 5 team in the nation is 7-0 when playing on the road this season and they are ranked in the top-five in every team statistical category in the MIAA.
History with these opponents
- The Gorillas and Hornets split last season and 6-12 in the series since 2010.
- Against the Ichabods, the Gorillas are 21-66 overall and have dropped the last 20 meetings. Of those 21 wins by Pitt State, nine have been at home while they have lost 23 in John Lance Arena.
- After this weekend the Gorillas return to the road for a Tuesday match up in Joplin when they take on Missouri Southern at 6 p.m.
- They will than return home next Friday and Saturday for 6 p.m. tilts with Nebraska-Kearney (Friday) and Fort Hays State (Saturday).
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