Volleyball Heads North for Ivy Weekend

PHILADELPHIA – Fresh off the heels of its first Ivy League win of 2008, the Penn women’s volleyball team heads to New England for a pair of matches with Brown and Yale this weekend.

The Quakers enter the weekend with a 5-10 overall record and stand 1-2 in Ancient Eight play. Their opponent on Friday, Brown, has a 9-7 record, including a 1-3 mark in league play. On Saturday, the Red and Blue take on a Yale team that is off to a great start in 2008 with a 10-3 record. The Bulldogs are an undefeated 4-0 in the Ivies.

Penn dispatched Columbia, 3-0, last Saturday for its first conference win this season. The Quakers hope to carry that momentum over as they head out on the road for the second weekend in a row. Sophomore Julia Swanson had two double-doubles last weekend. She has reached double figures in kills in 11 of Penn’s 15 matches. In the win over the Lions, she had her cleanest match of the season, registering 11 kills while committing only one attack error, finishing with a .500 hitting percentage in the match.

Junior Anne Magnuson has rounded into form of late, picking up 12 and 10 kills against Cornell and Columbia, respectively last weekend. Her 90 kills so far this season are a career high – in fact it is more than the 87 she had accumulated in her first two seasons at Penn combined.

Senior middle blocker Kathryn Turner picked up four block assists last weekend in New York, giving her a total of 248 in her career. She moved past Sherri Clarey into fourth all-time in program history and trails third-place Stephanie Bell by 21.

A few notes heading into the weekend...

A look at the Quakers:

Friday’s match against Brown will be the first for Penn since head coach Kerry Carr took a leave of absence as she battles breast cancer. Assistant coach Ryan Goodwin will serve as acting head coach for the remainder of the season. Swanson is fourth in the Ivy League in kills per set with 3.31. Her 172 kills ranks her fourth in the Ancient Eight as well. Megan Tryon is third in the league in assists with 492. The next highest setter on the squad is Mary Russell with 32. Madison Wojciechowski’s 257 digs is second in the Ivies.

Scouting the Bears:

Lyndse Yess is third in the Ivy League in kills with 178. Danielle Vaughn is a dual-threat for the Bears. She has 107 kills on the season and has factored in on 42 blocks. 17 of the blocks she has registered have been solo stops. Natalie Meyers’ 532 assists ranks her second in the Ancient Eight.

Scouting the Buldogs:

Alexis Crusey has picked up 169 kills in 2008, good for fifth in the league. Hers is a more efficient number as she has done so in less games than the four players ahead of her and she is also in the top ten in hitting percentage – something the other four women cannot claim. The Bulldogs feature a second player who has been a huge factor at the net in Cat Dailey. She has 146 kills and ranks third in the league in kills per set with 3.32. Dailey was named Ivy League Player of the Week last week, joining Crusey and Ally Mendenhall as Bulldogs to win the honor this season.