ASHEVILLE, N.C. - The UNC Asheville volleyball team finishes up the 2011 season with two key Big South Conference home matches this weekend. The Bulldogs host Radford Friday night at 7 p.m. and then battle league-leader Liberty Saturday evening at 7 p.m. Friday's match will be video-streamed and can be seen for a small fee at www.uncabulldogs.com. Saturday's match will be Senior Night as the Bulldogs celebrate the careers of setter Hallie Morse and outside hitter Cindi Miller.
Friday's match is crucial as the Bulldogs (14-11, 7-5 BSC) host the Highlanders (7-5) in a battle for third place. Asheville downed RU back on Oct. 1 at the Dedmon Center in four sets. Saturday's match vs. Liberty will be an important one for the Flames as they're trying to hold on to first place in the league standings.
The Bulldogs had a tough weekend on the road last week. They fell at both Winthrop and Presbyterian College in four sets. Both matches had Asheville starting out slowly before rallying and coming extremely close to sending the game into a fifth set with momentum.
"We really didn't play too badly at either Winthrop or Presbyterian," explained first-year coach Frederico Santos. "We didn't start out too well but in each match we made adjustments and fought back and came close to getting to a fifth set."
Santos wants to see the Bulldogs finish strong this weekend before heading to the Big South Conference Tournament next weekend at Charleston Southern.
"We've had a nice year and want to be playing our absolute best going into the conference tournament," commented Santos. "We've played well at home this season and hopefully that continues this weekend. We want to send our seniors out on a high note."
NOTING THE BULLDOGS
The Bulldogs are 19-3 in league matches at home over the past three seasons. Asheville is 5-1 at home this year.
Asheville needs one more win to clinch a winning season. It will be the Bulldogs fourth consecutive winning season.
The Bulldogs are second in the Big South in hitting percentage at .187.
Cindi Miller is second in the league in kills with a 3.58 per set average. Jaimie Dorfman is second in service aces at 0.38. And Alex Stewart is second in digs at 4.58.