OXFORD, Ohio - The Miami University volleyball team returns to action this weekend when it participates in the Indiana Invitational. On Friday, the RedHawks take on the host Indiana Hoosiers at 7 p.m. On Saturday, Miami faces Mississippi State at 10 a.m. and Southeast Missouri State at 5 p.m.
STRONG DEBUTS: Several of Miami’s freshmen had strong debuts to their collegiate careers last weekend at the Panther Invitational. Freshman outside hitter Olivia Rusek recorded 24 kills, an average of 2.18 per set. Freshman middle hitter Meredith Stutz earned starts in all three matches at the event. Finally, freshman defensive specialist Maeve McDonald earned the libero shirt in the final two matches of the tournament, and finished with a team-leading 40 digs, an average of 3.33 per set.
HILL WINS PLAYER OF THE WEEK: The best performance was saved for sophomore middle hitter Paige Hill, however. Finally healthy this season, she led the RedHawks with 34 kills (2.83 per set) and 10 blocks (two solo and eight assisted). She was rewarded for her efforts by being named the Mid-American Conference East Division’s Offensive Player of the Week on Monday.
ABOUT INDIANA: The Hoosiers had a terrific start to their season, winning all three of their matches to take the UConn Classic Championship. Indiana defeated Central Connecticut State in straight sets and New Hampshire, 3-1, before defeating the host Connecticut, 3-2, to win the title. The Hoosiers are coming off a 9-22 season in which they finished 1-19 in the very difficult Big Ten. Indiana has been led by junior outside hitter Amelia Anderson. Last weekend she finished with 46 kills, an average of 3.83 per set.
THE SERIES AGAINST THE HOOSIERS: Indiana holds a 14-4 lead in the all-time series with Miami. The Hoosiers earned a 3-0 win the last time these two teams met on Sept. 15, 2012, also at the Hoosier Classic. Sarah Chaney led the RedHawks with six kills in that match.
ABOUT MISSISSIPPI STATE: The Bulldogs went 1-3 at the season-opening Sam Houston Invitational last weekend. Mississippi State lost to Cal State Bakersfield, 0-3, and host Sam Houston State, 1-3, on Friday. On Saturday, it defeated Texas Pan-American, 3-1, before falling to Louisiana-Monroe in straight sets. Freshman libero Payton Harris was impressive in her collegiate debut. She finished with 100 digs on the weekend, an average of 7.14 per set.
THE SERIES AGAINST THE BULLDOGS: This is the first meeting between Miami and Mississippi State.
ABOUT SOUTHEAST MISSOURI STATE : Southeast Missouri State went 1-3 at the Saint Louis Tournament last weekend. After opening with a 3-1 win over Memphis, the similarly named Redhawks (the “h” is lowercase in their version of the nickname) fell to Alabama (1-3), Saint Louis (0-3) and Northern Iowa (1-3) to close out the event. Southeast is led by senior outside hitter Andrea Baylin. She finished with 53 kills and 61 digs last weekend to lead the team in both categories.
THE SERIES AGAINST THE REDHAWKS: This is the first meeting between Miami and Southeast Missouri State.