Nov. 7, 2013
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. - After posting a 3-0 road win over UAB on Tuesday night, Alabama (19-6, 6-4 SEC) returns to Southeastern Conference action this weekend when it hosts the Arkansas Razorbacks (14-10, 7-6 SEC) and the No. 7-ranked Missouri Tigers (27-0, 11-0 SEC) this weekend. The Crimson Tide opens the weekend on Friday night with a 7 p.m. CT, match against the Razorbacks from Foster Auditorium. The weekend closes with a Sunday afternoon match against the Tigers, with first serve scheduled for 1:30 p.m. CT.
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Friday, Nov. 8 versus Arkansas
Chick-Fil-A Night - Free Chick-Fil-A sandwiches to first 300 fans in attendance
Free admission with LSU football ticket
UA Students - First 100 UA students in attendance will receive "Fear the Sweater Vest T-shirt"
Sunday, Nov. 10 versus No. 7 Missouri
Military Appreciation Day - Current and past military members receive free admission with valid military ID, and the 313th Army Band will be in attendance
Free admission with LSU football ticket
First 100 kids 12 and younger receive a free hot dog, drink and face tattoo
Postgame autographs by the team
Following its sweep over UAB in the final non-conference match of the season, Alabama has now won four of its last five matches overall. UA hit .355 against the Blazers en route to the team's seventh sweep of the season. In its most recent SEC match, the Crimson Tide posted a 3-1 win over the Mississippi State Bulldogs last Friday night. Bama posted a .276 hitting percentage in the match, while holding MSU to a .207 percentage. The Bulldogs out-dug the Tide 55 to 52, marking just the fourth time this season Alabama had less digs than its opponents. After the victory over MSU, the Crimson Tide remains in fourth place in the SEC standings.
For the season, the Tide ranks fourth in the SEC with 14.28 kills per set, and third in the conference with 13.38 assists and a .272 hitting percentage. Bama is averaging 14.05 kills per set with a .253 hitting percentage during SEC play. Four of Alabama's six losses have come against nationally ranked opponents and teams ranked in the top-20 in RPI.
The Arkansas Razorbacks enter Friday's match with a 14-10 overall record and a 7-6 mark in SEC play. The Razorbacks are coming off a 3-0 win over Ole Miss, which snapped a three-match losing streak for Arkansas, after losses to Texas A&M, LSU and Kentucky. As a team, Arkansas is averaging 13.48 kills per set with a .201 hitting percentage, while opponents are averaging 12.86 kills per set with a .210 hitting efficiency.
The Razorbacks offensive attack is led by senior outside hitter Mededith Hays, who is fourth in the SEC with 4.00 kills per set. Hayley Koop chips in with 2.64 kills per set and Breana Jones is third on the team with 1.93 kills per set. Emily Helm leads the squad and is fourth in the conference with 4.51 digs per set. Summer Morgan leads the team with 75 blocks and Ana Sofia Josino has a team-high 1.05 blocks per set.
In the most recent meeting between the two schools, Alabama posted a 3-1 win at Arkansas on Oct. 11, to snap a seven-match losing streak to the Razorbacks. In that match, Alabama got 21 kills from Brittany Thomas and 17 more from Krystal Rivers. Arkansas was paced by Koop's 15 kills while Hays ended the night with 11. Friday's match will be the 41st meeting all-time between the two schools, as Arkansas leads the all-time series 32-8.
Missouri enters the week with a perfect 27-0 record and will play at Auburn on Friday, before traveling to Tuscaloosa for Sunday's matinee. Now ranked No. 7 in the country, Missouri is 11-0 during SEC play. The Tigers lead the country in hitting percentage (.364) and are second nationally with 15.34 kills per set. Opponents are averaging 11.33 kills per set with a .173 hitting percentage, which is second in the SEC.
Whitney Little is second in the country with a .497 hitting percentage, while averaging 2.43 kills per set. Little leads the team with 1.10 blocks per set, which puts her sixth in the SEC in blocking. Lisa Henning leads the team with 4.25 kills per set to rank second in the SEC and 25th nationally. Henning also adds 2.28 digs per set. Freshman outside hitter Carly Kan averages 3.16 kills per set, but has been better during SEC play, averaging 3.50 kills per set with a .355 hitting percentage against conference foes. Setter Molly Kreklow leads the conference with 12.66 assists per set to rank second in the country.
When Alabama and Missouri met earlier this season, the Tigers defeated the Tide in four sets, to take a 3-1 lead in the all-time series. In the match, UA was paced by Krystal Rivers' 15 kills while Brittany Thomas and Mattie Weldy chipped in with 13 and 10 kills, respectively. The Tigers were led by Carly Kan's 19 kills and a .471 hitting percentage and Whitney added 12 kills and nine total blocks.
Following this week's matches against Arkansas and Missouri, the Crimson Tide will hit the road for SEC matches at South Carolina and No. 5 Florida next week. Alabama travels to Columbia, S.C. for a Friday night match against the Gamecocks, with first serve scheduled for 6 p.m. CT from the Volleyball Competition Facility. UA wraps up the weekend with a Sunday afternoon match against the Gators, with first serve scheduled for 1 p.m. CT from the Stephen C. O'Connell Center. The match against Florida will be televised on CSS.
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