PHILADELPHIA The University of Pennsylvania volleyball team opens its home slate this weekend as host of the Sheraton-Penn Invitational. The Quakers welcome Binghamton, Fairleigh Dickinson and Quinnipiac to The Palestra. On Saturday, Penn hosts Binghamton at 7:30 p.m.; onSunday, the Red and Blue play Quinnipiac at 12:30 p.m. and Fairleigh Dickinson at 5:30 p.m.
The Quakers started the season 1-5 after playing in the Comfort Suites Invitational (Charlotte, N.C.) and the Holiday Inn Buena Suites Fullerton Classic (Fullerton, Calif.). After going winless inits first five matches, Penn defeated Lipscomb, 3-0, last Saturday.
Last weekend, freshman Natalie Drucker emerged as a talent, tallying 23 kills and 15 blocks for the Quakers. Friday against San Diego State,she registered seven kills and had a .375 hitting percentage. Against Cal State Fullerton, she tied for a team-high 10 kills and also had five blocks. In the Quakers' win over Lipscomb, Drucker registered nine blocks (3 BS, 6 BA).
Junior setter Linda Zhang was named all-tournament the past two weekends. She has 156 assists this season.
Binghamton is 3-10 after four preseason tournaments. The Bearcats defeated Buffalo last Saturday, 3-2. Wednesday night Binghamton lost to in-state rival Siena in five games. Game two was the longest game in Bearcat history,an epic 40-38 win by Siena.
Fairleigh Dickinson is 7-2 this season despite playing eight matches on the road. The Knights went 2-1 in both of their preseason tournaments. Wednesday night, FDU swept Rider inits first home match of the season.
Quinnipiac (0-14) enters the weekend stilllooking for its first victory of the season. The Bobcats fell at Hartford Tuesday night, 3-0.
2006 Sheraton-Penn Invitational Schedule
Saturday, Sept. 23
Fairleigh Dickinson vs. Quinnipiac, 5 p.m.
Penn vs. Binghamton, 7:30 p.m.
Sunday, Sept. 24
Binghamton vs. Fairleigh Dickinson, 10 a.m.
Penn vs. Quinnipiac, 12:30 p.m.
Quinnipiac vs. Binghamton, 3 p.m.
Penn vs. Fairleigh Dickinson, 5:30 p.m.