TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – The No. 20 Florida State volleyball team will co-host its third tournament of the season this weekend, as it takes on Tennessee and Arizona as a part of the FSU-FAMU Classic.
The team will host the Tennessee Volunteers on Friday (Sept. 8) at Tully Gym, and on Saturday (Sept. 9), the Seminoles will head to the Lawson Center on the Florida A&M Campus to take on the Arizona Wildcats.
Tennessee has gone 4-2 so far this season, and will head to Kennesaw State after participating in the FSU-FAMU Classic. The Volunteers went undefeated in its first home tournament this season, then went 1-2 in the Diet Coke Classic in Minneapolis, Minn., falling to West Virginia and No. 2 Minnesota.
Arizona is coming off of a successful 2016 campaign after reaching the Sweet 16 round of the NCAA Tournament. The Wildcats are also 4-2 so far this season after going 2-1 in each of its first two non-conference tournaments of the season.
This tournament will prove to be a tough test for the Seminoles, as the team saw two successful wins at the Seminole Invitational, but was also handed its first tough loss of the season. As the only ranked ACC team at No. 20, the team is looking to hold on to its ranking, but two losses could put its 93-week ranking streak in jeopardy.
The Seminoles’ offense will be led by senior outside hitter Natasha Calkins, who is currently averaging 3.50 kills per set, with 84 kills on 233 total attacks already this season. Senior Milica Kubura follows right behind her outside counterpart, averaging 3.59 kills per set (79 total) so far this season.
The offense has been supported by junior setter Brianne Burkert this season, as the Seminoles’ lead setter has already notched 238 assists (9.92 assists/set). Burkert has also recorded a double-double in five of the six matches the team has played so far, and has now recorded 18 double-doubles in her career.
On the defensive side, senior libero Cecilie Woie leads the team with 117 digs (4.88 digs/set). Freshman middle blocker Taryn Knuth has been holding down the front row defense, leading the Seminoles with 32 total blocks (1.33 blocks/set) this season.
Schedule of Events
Friday, Sept. 8
6:00 pm – Florida State vs. Tennessee (FSU Campus – Tully Gym)*
6:00 pm – Florida A&M vs. Arizona (FAMU Campus – Lawson Center)
Saturday, Sept. 9
1:00 pm – Florida A&M vs. Tennessee (FAMU Campus – Lawson Center)
4:30 pm – Florida State vs. Arizona (FAMU Campus – Lawson Center)
*Broadcast live on ACC Network Extra
Follow the Action
All regular season matches held at Tully Gym will be broadcast live on ACC Network Extra. Fans can watch Friday’s match against Tennessee live here: http://www.espn.com/watch/_/id/3136711/tennessee-vs-florida-state-w-volleyball
Live stats from all matches will stream live through StatBroadcast: http://www.statbroadcast.com/events/statmonitr.php?gid=fsu
Scouting the Competition
Series record: Florida State 11-7
Last meeting: No. 12 FSU beat No. 15 UT 3-0 on August 24, 2012 in Knoxville.
In 2016, Tennessee finished 7th in a tough SEC conference after going 17-14 (7-11 SEC) and did not make a postseason run.
After returning only five starters from last season, the team has gone 4-2 so far, with one of those losses coming from No. 2 Minnesota on the road.
Series record: Arizona leads 2-0
Last meeting: No. 14 Arizona beat unranked FSU 3-0 in Tallahassee on October 11, 1985.
The Wildcats had a hugely successful season in 2016. After finishing seventh in the Pac-12 with a 20-15 (10-10 Pac-12) record, the team went on to reach the Sweet 16 round of the NCAA Tournament.
Only three starters returned for Arizona this season as they lost Penina Snuka – the Pac-12 Setter of the Year – and Kalei Mau, both Third Team AVCA All-Americans, as well as setter Laura Larson and outside hitter Katarina Pilpeic.
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