Oct. 1, 2013
Tuscaloosa, Ala. - Alabama (12-3/0-1 SEC) opens the second week of Southeastern Conference play on the road against rival Auburn (9-4, 0-1 SEC) on Wednesday night. First serve between the Crimson Tide and Tigers is scheduled for 7 p.m. CT from the Auburn Arena.
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For the season, Alabama is hitting .276 as a team, while averaging 14.25 kills, 13.33 assists, 1.33 aces, 14.00 digs, and 1.64 blocks per set. The Crimson Tide ranks in the top-20 nationally in three categories. The Tide ranks 18th nationally with a .276 hitting percentage through 15 matches. Alabama also ranks 20th in kills (14.25) and assists (13.33) per set, to rank fourth in the SEC in both categories. UA opponents hit .190 with 11.42 kills, 10.67 assists, 0.98 aces, 11.60 digs and 2.11 blocks per set this year.
Freshman outside hitter Brittany Thomas, who is the current SEC Freshman of the Week, is third on the team with 178 kills, while her 3.24 kills per set rank 15th in the SEC. Thomas is also second on the team with 145 digs to average 2.64 digs per set.
Redshirt freshman Krystal Rivers continues to lead the Tide in kills with 192 and is averaging 3.49 kills per set with a .437 hitting percentage for the season. Rivers is ninth in the SEC in kills per set and third in the conference and 14th in the country in hitting percentage.
Senior right-side hitter Andrea McQuaid paced the Tide last week with a .520 hitting percentage. After having five kills and a .500 percentage against Alabama State, McQuaid recorded 10 kills against Kentucky for her second double-digit kill match of the season. McQuaid his hitting .315 for the season while averaging 1.63 kills per set.
Sophomore setter Sierra Wilson added 78 more assists to hear career total, as she ranks seventh in school history with 1,917 career assists ... Wilson needs 60 more assists to pass Stephanie Riley (2008-11) for sixth all-time ... Wilson ranks second in the SEC with 11.77 assists per set, which ranks eighth in the country.
Alabama head coach Ed Allen is in his third season with the Crimson Tide and 22nd overall as a head coach. With a 12-3 record this season, Allen has a 41-37 record at the Capstone, bringing his career record to 535-220 (.709).
The Auburn Tigers enter Wednesday's match riding a three-match losing streak, with their most recent loss coming from SEC opponent Kentucky (3-0) last Wednesday. The Tigers are averaging 13.70 kills per set, while hitting .234 for the season, Auburn his holding opponents to a .166 percentage and 11.77 kills per set this season.
In the contest against Kentucky, senior Camila Jersonsky led the Tigers with eight kills and four blocks. Jersonsky leads the team in blocks, averaging 0.98 per set and is second in kills averaging 2.66 per set. Katherine Culwell leads Auburn with an average of 3.36 kills per set and adds 0.47 blocks per set. Kathia Rud adds 2.51 kills per set and Kia Bright chips in with 2.36 kills per set. Sarah Wroblicky has 201 digs this season and ranks fourth in the SEC with a team-leading 4.28 digs per set.
Wednesday's match will be the 75th time the two teams have met at the net. Alabama holds a 44-30 lead in the all-time series. Auburn head coach Rick Nold is in his third season at Auburn, putting together a 37-36 in his time on The Plains. Including nine seasons as the head coach at Jacksonville State (171-99), Nold has a career record of 208-135 in 12 seasons.
Following the Wednesday trip to Auburn, Alabama closes the second week of SEC play at home with a match against No. 3 Florida, on Sunday, Oct. 6, at 1:30 p.m. CT.
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