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Found 45 results

  1. USF ATHLETICS GoUSFBulls.com FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE DATE: July 1, 2020 Web Release: https://bit.ly/2CRMHia Bulls Welcome Jade Hayes as Newest Assistant Head coach Jolene Shepardson adds another experienced coach to her new USF volleyball staff. TAMPA, JULY 1, 2020 – Head coach Jolene Shepardson is happy to announce Jade Hayes as her new assistant coach for the USF volleyball program. Hayes heads to South Florida after serving as an assistant coach of the Missouri State beach volleyball program for the 2020 season. “I am thankful to have Jade join our staff. Having grown up in the gym and being a coach’s daughter, Jade has a wealth of knowledge of the game,” Shepardson said. “She is also a wonderful role model for our young women as a woman of character and has been a successful student-athlete herself. She has a positive effect on everyone she comes in contact with because of her radiant personality, love for people, and unending energy.” Hayes brings much experience in both the beach and indoor games to the Bulls. A two-time Missouri Gatorade Player of the Year in high school, Hayes played her first two collegiate volleyball seasons at Missouri. She graduated from Mizzou in 2013 with a bachelor's degree in health sciences/health professions after appearing in 65 matches and 227 sets, and transferred to Central Florida for her final two indoor seasons. At UCF, Hayes accumulated more than 1,000 digs in two seasons, and then concluded her eligibility on the South Carolina beach volleyball team in spring 2015. She returned to UCF to work as a graduate assistant and director of operations for the Knights' volleyball program, and completed her master's degree in interdisciplinary studies at the school in May 2017. Hayes remains active on the professional beach volleyball circuit, and has been a Platform 1440 sponsored athlete since 2018. This upcoming season will mark the first for the Bulls under the leadership of Shepardson, who returned to USF volleyball 18 years after she helped lead the program to its last conference championship and NCAA tournament appearance as a student-athlete in 2002.
  2. USF ATHLETICS GoUSFBulls.com FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE DATE: April. 16, 2020 Web Release: Bulls Welcome Kamille Jones as Newest Assistant - USF Athletics BIT.LY Head coach Jolene Shepardson has announced Kamille Jones as her new assistant coach. Bulls Welcome Kamille Jones as Newest Assistant Head coach Jolene Shepardson has announced Kamille Jones as her new assistant coach. TAMPA, April 15, 2020 - Head coach Jolene Shepardson is happy to announce Kamille Jones as her new assistant coach for the USF volleyball program. Jones heads to South Florida after serving as a volunteer assistant at the University of Texas at San Antonio earlier this year. In 2019 Jones served as the head coach of the Gardner-Webb volleyball program. “Kamille is the perfect fit for my staff. I am thankful to have her. She is a problem-solving, detail-oriented, thoughtful, driven, young professional,” Shepardson said. “There is no doubt she will be a wonderful role model for our student-athletes.” Jones spent the 2018 season as a graduate assistant coach at West Texas A&M University, helping lead the Lady Buffs to a 19-13 mark. The Fort Worth, Texas native finished her collegiate career at West Texas A&M in 2017, earning Lone Star All-Conference honors while leading the Lady Buffs to a NCAA Division II tournament appearance. Jones began her collegiate career at Murray State University, helping the Racers claim three straight Ohio Valley Conference titles and make two trips to the NCAA Division I tournament. The upcoming season will mark the first year for the USF Volleyball program under the helm of former standout player and new head coach Jolene Shepardson.
  3. USF ATHLETICS GoUSFBulls.com FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE DATE: Oct. 18, 2019 Bulls Volleyball Falls on the Road at Tulsa TAMPA, Oct. 18, 2019 – The USF women’s volleyball team dropped a three-set match to Tulsa Friday at the Reynolds Center in Tulsa, Okla., as the Bulls began a two-game road swing. USF (7-14, 1-6 American) saw Tulsa (12-8; 5-2 American) improve to 5-2 in conference play taking the match in three sets, 25-14, 25-13, 25-22. Tulsa outhit the Bulls .200 to .019 on the night and collected 53 digs. USF was led by freshmen or sophomores in kills, assists, blocks and digs on the night. Sophomore outside hitter Lindsey Pliapol (Daytona Beach, Fla.) led the Bulls with five kills and five blocks on the night. She pushed her career-best and team-leading season total of kills to 251. Freshman Ally Barnhart (Lenexa, Kan.) posted a team high six kills to go with two blocks. Sophomore setter Lauren LaBeck (Chicago, Ill.) surpassed her 2018 season assist total of 474 as she posted 15 assists on the night to stand at 483 for the season. Sophomore Libero CC Clausen (The Woodlands, Texas) posted a team-best 18 digs. Tulsa jumped to a 12-7 lead in the first set before a run pulled the Bulls to within two at 12-10 following a block by Pliapol and Legg. Tulsa pulled away in the set hitting .257 to take a 25-14 win. Tulsa continued to roll in the second set, jumping to a 15-5 lead before a pair of kills by Barnhart pulled the Bulls within 16-10. Tulsa hit .364 in the set to post a 25-13 victory. The Bulls rallied to jump to an early 3-0 lead in the third set, but Tulsa quickly regained the momentum and ran of six straight points. A big block by Pliapol and Nye Musemuna (Avon, Ind.) gave the Bulls a 15-14 lead. The teams battled close the rest of the set. Freshman Jac St. Cin (St. Petersburg, Fla.) brought the Bulls within on, 23-22, with a late kill, but the Hurricanes closed the door with a 25-22 victory. USF will complete its two-game road swing on Sunday when the Bulls take on Wichita State in a 2 p.m. start. Notables • Lauren LaBeck posted a new career season-best assist total reaching 483 for the year. • Freshman or sophomores led the Bulls in kills, assists, digs and blocks on the night.
  4. USF ATHLETICS GoUSFBulls.com FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE DATE: Oct. 13, 2019 Web Release: http://bit.ly/2MAX1fT USF Volleyball Ends Weekend with Four Set Loss to SMU The Bulls travel to Tulsa and Wichita State next weekend as conference play continues TAMPA, Oct. 13, 2019 – The South Florida volleyball team (7-13; 1-5 American) fought hard but fell to SMU (11-5; 4-2 American) on Sunday in The Corral. SMU won the first set followed by a USF victory in the second. The Mustangs would take the third and fourth sets, however, to win the match, 3-1. SMU took the first set after battling back-and-forth with the Bulls. USF challenged the Mustangs and almost extended the set, but ultimately a late 5-1 run by SMU gave the Mustangs the set win. The second set started as another back-and-forth fight before an 8-1 run gave the Bulls the lead. Senior outside hitter Jac’cara Walker (Gainesville, Fla.) had six kills while sophomore setter Lauren LaBeck (Elk Grove, Ill.) tallied 10 assists during the set victory. The Bulls fell behind early in the third set, trailing 12-3. South Florida seized the momentum afterwards, eventually tying the set at 19-19. The Mustangs pushed back and were able to close out the set, taking the lead, 2-1. The Mustangs charged ahead in the fourth set as well, winning the set, 25-18, and the match, 3-1. LaBeck led USF setters with 41 assists. Lindsey Pliapol (Daytona Beach, Fla.) paced the team with 13 kills, while Walker added 12 of her own. Quotable Head coach Courtney Draper on the match… “SMU is a very good team. We out-blocked them 10-to-4. I was really proud of our blocking effort. I felt like we made entirely too many errors to be able to win. We made 37 errors and you just can’t afford to give an opponent 37 points that they don’t have to earn. I told them I don’t expect them to play perfect, they’re human. They make mistakes, but we can’t make 37 errors.” Notables Redshirt junior Nye Musemuna (Avon, Ind.) posted a career-high .538 hitting percentage. South Florida out-blocked SMU, 10-4. Both freshman Jac St. Cin (St. Petersburg, Fla.) and sophomore Nicole Legg (San Antonio, Texas) posted career-highs in block assists with six.
  5. USF ATHLETICS GoUSFBulls.com FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE DATE: Oct. 6, 2019 Web Release:https://gousfbulls.com/news/2019/10/6/womens-volleyball-bulls-fall-in-four-sets-at-cincinnati.aspx Bulls Volleyball Falls in Four Sets at Cincinnati USF returns to The Corral Friday to face UCF in the War on I-4. CINCINNATI, OHIO, OCT. 6, 2019 – The USF women’s volleyball team closed out a two-match conference road swing on Sunday with a four-set loss to the Cincinnati Bearcats (12-4; 4-0 American) at Cincinnati’s Fifth Third Arena. After in impressive first set win by the Bulls, the Bearcats got going in front of the home crowd of 797 fans to post a 23-25, 25-21, 25-12, 26-24 victory. The Bulls fell to 7-11 overall and 1-3 in The American following their first conference road swing. USF will return to The Corral on Friday, Oct. 11, at 8 p.m. to face UCF in the War on I-4. Cincinnati entered the match coming off straight set wins over ECU, Wichita State and UCF to open conference play and were 3-1 at home on the year, with their only home loss coming to No. 25 Louisville in five sets. Cincinnati hit .259 in the match and posted 12 aces to out duel the Bulls who hit .220. Freshman Jac St. Cin (St. Petersburg, Fla.) led the Bulls with 14 kills on the day while hitting .650. Freshman Ally Barnhart (Lenexa, Kan.) and sophomore Nicole Legg (Union, K.Y.) both logged five blocks, while freshman Jordan Valley (Haslett, Mich.) posted a team-high 13 digs. USF took an early 10-6 lead in the first set following a block from Lindsey Pliapol (Daytona Beach, Fla.) and Legg. Cincinnati tied the match at 18 before the Bulls reeled of six straight points to lead 24-18 behind kills from Jac’cara Walker (Gainesville, Fla.) and Legg and a big block. The Bearcats responded with five straight points to close to 24-23 before CC Clausen (The Woodlands, Texas) found the floor with a quick over to deliver the first set win to the Bulls. Cincinnati took a tight second set that saw USF jump to a 9-5 lead. The match was later tied at 14 and 20. The Bearcats ran of four straight points late to take a 24-20 lead before claiming a 25-21 victory. The Bearcats were in command from the start in the third set and cruised to a 25-12 victory. They continued the momentum into the fourth set, but the Bulls battled hard, tying the match at 13 on a Barnhart block. The Bulls tied the set again at 19 following a block from Pliapol and Legg, and then took a 22-21 lead on a kill from Walker. Cincinnati went on to post a 26-24 win to seal the four-set victory. Notables Freshman Jac St. Cin led the Bulls with 14 kills and hitting .650 Freshman Ally Barnhart and sophomore Nicole Legg both logged five blocks to lead the Bulls. Freshman Jordan Valley posted a team-high 13 digs.
  6. USF ATHLETICS GoUSFBulls.com FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Click here to follow USF Volleyball on Twitter Click here to like USF Volleyball on Facebook USF Falls in Straight Sets at ECU GREENVILLE, N.C. (Oct. 4, 2019) – The USF volleyball team hit the road for two crucial American Athletic Conference matches, beginning tonight at East Carolina, and looked for its fourth win in its last five outings. Unfortunately, for the Bulls, the Pirates had other ideas as ECU handed USF a 3-0 loss at Minges Coliseum. The Bulls drop to 7-10 overall and 1-2 in the American, while the Pirates improve to 13-3 on the year and 1-2 in the AAC. USF put together its best set of the match in the second set, despite falling 25-19. The Bulls and Pirates were tied twice in the early going, and USF only trailed by as many as three points, however ECU used a 6-0 run to give itself enough cushion to pull away and go up 2-0 in the match, and eventually pulling out the match win. The Bulls posted a .400 hitting percentage in the second set, their best of the night. Lindsey Pliapol (Daytona Beach, Fla.) has 14 kills and four digs while Lauren LaBeck (Chicago, Ill.) recorded a match-high 26 digs. Notables - Jac’cara Walker (Gainesville, Fla.) turned in a team-high seven digs. - CC Clausen (The Woodlands, Texas) had six digs in the loss to the Pirates. Key Stats 52 – East Carolina held a 52-29 kills advantage, on the night, in the win over the Bulls. Up Next USF will close out its weekend on Sunday when it travels to Cincinnati to face the Bearcats. First serve is slated for 1 p.m. The Bulls will return to The Corral on Friday, Oct. 11, at 8 p.m. when it faces UCF in the War on I-4.
  7. USF ATHLETICS GoUSFBulls.com FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE DATE: Sept. 27, 2019 Web Release: Bulls open conference play with sweep of Temple BIT.LY Walker leads Bulls to first conference-opening win since 2014. Bulls Open Conference Play with Sweep of Temple USF takes on UConn Sunday at noon in the Corral TAMPA, Sept. 27, 2019 – The USF volleyball team opened American Athletic Conference play with an impressive three-set sweep of Temple (9-3; 0-1 American) Friday night in The Corral. Prior to the match the 2018 team was honored with the presentation of the NIVC banner, USF’s first postseason appearance since 2002. USF (7-8; 1-0 American) used big games from sophomore Lindsey Pliapol, senior Jac’cara Walker (Gainesville, Fla.) and junior Rafaela Biegelmeyer (Rio Grande Do Sul, Brazil) to take the win, 25-22, 25-19, 25-18. The Bulls will take on UConn (6-6) Sunday at noon. Walker led the Bulls with 11 kills and added eight digs while Pliapol added nine kills and five digs and Biegelmeyer posted 35 assists and eight digs to help the Bulls hit. 274 on the night. USF used 11 blocks on the night, led by five from Ally Barnhart (Lenexa, Kan.), to stymie Temple as the Owls hit .137. USF jumped to a quick lead taking set one behind six kills from Walker and five from Pliapol. The Bulls extended their lead with an impressive second set, pulling away from a tight set at 8-8 to cruise to a 25-19 win behind a team effort that saw five Bulls post three kills and Barnhart and Jac St. Cin (St. Petersburg) log a pair of blocks each. Biegelmeyer recorded 14 assists in the set and the Bulls offense was humming, hitting .343. USF jumped to a quick 5-0 lead in the third set and forced a Temple timeout. The Bulls pushed the lead to 10-4. Temple rallied and closed to within 15-13, but USF heated up again, and kills by Legg and St. Cin put the cap on a 25-18 victory. Barnhart posted four kills and three blocks in the final frame. Notables USF posted its first conference opening win since downing Tulsa to begin the 2014 American Athletic Conference season. Ally Barnhart continued her strong play at the net with five blocks on the night and now leads the Bulls with 59 blocks on the year. Jac’ara Walker’s 11 kills on the night give her 179 on the year and her eight digs give her 167 on the year.
  8. I didn't get this posted in time for tonight's game, but there are two games tomorrow to take in at the Corral. USF ATHLETICS GoUSFBulls.com FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE DATE: Sept. 20, 2019 Web Release: Bulls Take on Indiana and Stetson in USF Invitational The South Florida Bulls begin four-straight home stand against the Dolphins on Tuesday. MATCHUP: USF vs. Indiana & Stetson WHEN: Friday, Sept. 20 vs. Indiana at 7 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 21 vs. Indiana at 2 p.m. & vs Stetson at 7 p.m. LOCATION: The Corral LIVE STATS: LINK TWITTER UPDATES: @USFVolleyball TAMPA, Sept. 20, 2019 – The USF women's volleyball team will face the Indiana Hoosiers and Stetson Hatters as part of USF Invitational action Friday and Saturday in The Corral. USF (4-6) defeated Jacksonville on Tuesday in five thrilling sets to capture the Bull’s second straight home win. Leading the team was senior Jac’cara Walker (Gainesville, Fla.), who posted 16 kills to improve to 120 kills on the season. Several underclassmen posted strong numbers against the in-state foe, including sophomore Lauren LaBeck (Chicago, Ill.) with 42 assists and sophomore Nicole Legg (San Antonio, Tx.), who tallied 12 kills and a team-best .857 hitting percentage. Offensively, freshman Jac St. Cin (St. Petersburg, Fla.) added 10 kills against the Dolphins. Aly Barnhart (Lenexa, Kan.) had eight massive blocks during the match. Anchoring the defense was sophomore Lindsey Pliapol (Daytona Beach, Fla.), who had a team-high of 21 digs. Pliapol leads the Bulls in kills (138) and has 102 digs on the year. Indiana (RV) (8-2) The Hoosiers feature senior middle blocker Deyshia Lofton, a 2018 All-Big Ten Second Team honoree, alongside freshmen defensive specialist Haley Armstrong, a newcomer who leads the team with 97 digs. Sophomore outside hitter Breana Edwards has totaled a team-high of 141 kills this season and will take the court alongside junior defensive specialist Bayli Lebo who broke the Indiana single-season record for digs with 525 in 2018. Indiana’s latest victory came at No. 15 Kentucky, the program’s first non-conference ranked win since 1998. During the Bluegrass Battle Tournament, the Hoosiers went 3-0 with additional wins over Florida Gulf Coast and Cleveland State. Head coach Steve Aird is in his second year with the Hoosiers and led the program to an overall record of 16-15 and a 7-13 record in Big Ten play in his first season. Stetson (2-5) The Hatters will showcase junior defensive specialist Chelcie Spence, who enters the upcoming invitational with 971 career digs, looking to achieve the 1,000-dig milestone. Senior Eva Deisa has recorded double-digit digs in all seven matches and leads the team with 75 kills, 92 digs, and an impressive 14 service aces so far this season. Senior setter Emily DeStaffino leads the team in assists with 178. Last week, Stetson competed in the JSU Gamecock Classic and went 1-2. The Hatters achieved their first win over an SEC opponent in 34 years, coming off a 3-2 victory against Mississippi State. Head coach Yang Deng is in her third season with Stetson after coming off a 17-year coaching career at Missouri. Notables The Bulls will face Indiana for the second and third time in the program’s history. USF leads 1-0 after a win in 1996. USF looks to improve on their 38 wins and 3 losses against Stetson during the 42nd meeting between the teams. Freshmen Barnhart and St. Cin lead the Bull’s in blocks with 35 and 20, respectively. LaBeck has recorded 249 assists this season, well on pace to surpass her assist total of 474 from last year. Tickets purchases will get you into the tournament for the entire day ($10 for adults, $7 for youth) and can be purchased at USFBullstix.com or by calling 1-800-GoBulls.
  9. USF ATHLETICS GoUSFBulls.com FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE DATE: Sept. 10, 2019 Web Release: http://bit.ly/2Aa81L7 USF to Face North Florida in Home Opener Black Out The South Florida Bulls will take on UNF during first regular home game of the season. MATCHUP: USF Bulls vs. UNF Ospreys WHEN: Tuesday, Sept. 10 at 6 p.m. LOCATION: The Corral LIVE STATS VS. UNF: https://gousfbulls.com LIVE STREAM: USF Athletics Youtube TWITTER UPDATES: @USFVolleyball TAMPA, Sept. 10, 2019 – The USF volleyball team will welcome North Florida to The Corral at 6 p.m. on Tuesday night in its home opener which features a blackout promotional night. The Bulls (2-3) look to gain momentum at home after three tough matches on the road during the Hurricane Invitational. Falling to FGCU (13-25, 17-25, 14-25), USF battled Auburn to a heartbreaking five-sets (25-20, 26-28, 13-25, 25-21, 15-17) and closed out the weekend against Miami (21-25, 26-28, 19-25). Against FGCU, USF showcased freshman outside hitter Jac St. Cin (St. Petersburg, Fla.) with a .429 hitting average and in earning seven kills. Senior Jac’cara Walker (Gainesville, Fla.) recorded seven kills of her own during the game as well. Closing out the night was a match-high 15 digs coming from defensive specialist CC Clausen (The Woodlands, Texas). The Bulls took Auburn to five-sets during the second day, being led by Lauren LaBeck (Chicago) in assists. The sophomore setter racked up the assist column with 25 against the Auburn and 18 against Miami. Battling to the very end, the Bulls were almost always two points while facing the Hurricanes. Clausen leads the team defensively with 93 digs this season. Freshman Ally Barnhart (Lenexa, Kan.) has recorded 21 blocks during the first five games of 2019, adding to the Bulls defensive game. Walker, 2018 All-American Athletic Conference First Team honoree, tops the leader board in kills with a whopping 51 in total through five matches. UNF (2-4) The Ospreys have earned victories against Charleston Southern and Mercer but the wins bookend four straight losses. Both of UNF’s wins were 3-0 sweeps. UNF defeated Mercer (25-18, 25-17, 25-22) with the help of Julianna Askew nailing a team-high five aces and 32 assists. Last weekend, two Osprey’s were named to the UNF Invitational all-tournament team, Gabby O’connell and Rocio Moro. Outside hitter O’Connell averaged 16 kills against the Bears and libero Moro proved to be a defensive weapon with 53 digs on the weekend. Head coach Kristen Wright is in her second year and in 2018 led the program to a spot in the ASUN Championship. Notables Jac’cara Walker tallied 18 kills against the Auburn, leading the team. LaBeck and Rafaela Biegelmeye (Brazil) each climbed the charts with 25 and 13 assists against the Auburn Tigers. Lindsey Pilapol (Daytona Beach, Fla.) earned a spot on the AAC Honor Roll (Sept. 3) after her performance on opening weekend.
  10. USF ATHLETICS GoUSFBulls.com FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Web Link: https://bit.ly/2m4gY56 Click here to follow USF Volleyball on Twitter Click here to like USF Volleyball on Facebook Bulls Fall in Straight Sets to FGCU CORAL GABLES, Fla. (Sept. 6, 2019) – The USF volleyball team dropped its first match of the 2019 campaign on Friday losing a hard fought straight-set decision to Florida Gulf Coast (13-25, 17-25, 14-25) during the first day of the Hurricane Invitational at the University of Miami in Coral Gables. The Bulls (2-1) battled throughout the three-set affair with the Eagles (4-0) in a match that had 15 ties and eight lead changes. USF recorded its best hitting percentage of the day in the final set (.385 percent) to go along with 13 kills. Jac St. Cin (St. Petersburg, Fla.) led the Bulls with a .429 hitting percentage and had seven kills to share the team lead with Jac’cara Walker (Gainesville, Fla.). Notables - CC Clausen (The Woodlands, Texas) turned in a match-high 15 digs. - Rafaela Biegelmeyer (Rio Grande Do Sul, Brazil) had seven digs and five assists. - Lauren LaBeck (Chicago, Ill.) posted a team-high 17 assists. - Lindsey Pliapol (Daytona Beach, Fla.) had 13 digs against FGCU to go along with six kills. Key Stats .115 – Despite hitting at a .385 percent clip in the third set, the Bulls finished the match hitting just .115 percent. Quotable “FGCU is a great team who finished in the top 50 in the country last season and has a lot of experienced players back. We had a lot of long rallies and played the first half of each set really well, but could not sustain that in the second half of each set. We hit extremely well in the final set but We needed to have a more aggressive mentality in all areas of the game. We are still working through some lineup adjustments, but Lauren (LaBeck) did a nice job setting and (Jac) St. Cin made some great attacking decisions.” – USF head coach Courtney Draper Up Next USF will close out its weekend on Saturday, Sept. 7, when it faces Auburn at 11 a.m. and Miami at 5:30 p.m.during the final day of the Hurricane Invitational. The Bulls will return home to The Corral to face in-state foe North Florida on Sept. 10 at 6 p.m. To purchase tickets for USF volleyball, or to purchase an Olympic Gold Pass which provides entry to all men’s soccer, women’s soccer and volleyball home contests in 2019, visit USFBullsTix.com or call 1-800-GO-BULLS. – #GoBulls –
  11. USF ATHLETICS GoUSFBulls.com FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Web Release: https://bit.ly/2LlEZxg Bulls Open 2019 In Style with Four-Set Win Over UAB Four Bulls had double-digit kills, as USF combined for 14 blocks MUNCIE, IND., AUG. 30, 2019 – The USF volleyball team began its quest for a second-consecutive postseason appearance with a four-sets victory over UAB to open the Ball State Tournament in Muncie, Ind. (21-25, 25-17, 25-22, 25-22). After dropping the opening set of 2019, the Bulls (1-0) stormed back to win the final three behind stellar play at the net and efficiency on the offensive end. Four Bulls tallied double-digit kills, while the team had 14 total blocks collectively. Notables Freshman middle blocker Ally Barnhart (Lenexa, Kan.) had 10 kills and four blocks in her collegiate debut. Sophomore outside hitter Lindsey Pliapol (Daytona Beach, Fla.) paced USF with 15 kills. Sophomore setter Lauren LaBeck (Chicago) had 25 assists and 11 digs. Sophomore libero CC Clausen (The Woodlands, Texas) had 25 digs to lead the match, doling out five assists as well. Freshman outside hitter Jac St. Cin (St. Petersburg, Fla.) had 10 kills on just 19 attacks to go along with Key Stats 3 – Bulls that recorded double-doubles. Senior preseason all-conference selection Jac’cara Walker (Gainesville, Fla.) had 12 kills and 12 digs. Pliapol finished with 11 digs and LaBeck had her first double-double of the season as well. .319 – USF’s hitting percentage in the match. .389 – Sophomore right side hitter Peyton Thompson (Spartanburg, S.C.) had a career best eight kills, hitting .389. Quotables “I’m really proud of the way we bounced back in the final three sets. Ally had a break out effort, both blocking and attacking in her collegiate debut. CC was excellent on defense and in serve reception. I thought we served very tough as a team and that allowed us to transition well on offense. Our setters did very nice job distributing the offense and our right sides both did great scoring points.” – head coach Courtney Draper. Up Next The Bulls are back in action at 7 p.m. Friday against Ball State on ESPN+, wrapping up the Ball State Tournament. Like USF, the Cardinals also appeared in the NIVC last season and opened the day with a 3-0 win over UAB.
  12. USF ATHLETICS GoUSFBulls.com FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Web Link: http://bit.ly/2xEh4Tr Bulls Unveil 2019 Schedule USF will face seven teams that played in the postseason last year TAMPA, JULY 9, 2019 – Fresh off the program’s first postseason appearance since 2002, head coach Courtney Draper and the USF volleyball team will open their 2019 season on Aug. 30. With a schedule filled with 30 matches against teams from 10 different conferences, USF will look to challenge itself following a 20-win season that ended in a trip to the National Invitational Volleyball Championship. The Bulls return American Athletic Conference First Team outside hitter Jac’cara Walker and a plethora of young, yet experienced talent. Sophomore libero CC Clausen had 526 digs in 2018, the fifth most in USF’s single-season history. Sophomore setter Lauren LaBeck had 474 assists last year, averaging 34.4 over the final seven matches. Fellow sophomore Lindsey Pliapol finished fourth on the team last season with 221 kills and played in all 32 matches. Redshirt junior middle blocker Nyemba Musemuna had a breakout 2018 with career highs of 106 kills and 91 blocks. USF welcomes 10 newcomers to the fray in 2019 in the form of three transfers and seven freshmen. First Serve The Bulls open the season on the road for the first time since 2016, as they head to Muncie, Ind. USF begins the 2019 slate against UAB on Aug. 30, the 45th meeting overall, but first since 2004. The Bulls then take on tournament host, Ball St., later that evening. The Cardinals finished 22-10 last year and like USF, also appeared in the NIVC. “It is really important to us to take our players back home to play and we are doing just that opening up at Ball State for Nyemba to compete in front of her home town crowd,” said Draper. “I think that opening weekend will be a great test for us out of the gate.” Nonconference Grind Splitting time on the road and at home over the next 14 matches, USF remains in the state of Florida for the entirety of September. Tournament action continues with a trip to Coral Gables, Fla., for the Hurricane Invitational Sept. 6-7. The Bulls open with reigning ASUN champion FGCU, which won its opening match of the NCAA Tournament. USF faces Auburn to start the final day of the invitational, then takes on host Miami later that night. “The Miami tournament will be very competitive and it will be great for us to play some of the best teams in the state of Florida,” said Draper. The Bulls have their first home match on Sept. 10against North Florida. USF is back on the road that weekend for the Gator Invitational in Gainesville, Sept. 13-14. The Bulls open the weekend with host Florida. The Gators have won no fewer than 25 matches in each of the last 28 years. The Bulls and Florida will meet for the 45th time and first time since 2009. USF takes on Long Beach State later that day for just the third time in program history. The tournament concludes with James Madison on the following day. The Dukes went 22-7 in 2018. “It is always a great experience to play in Gainesville, as they fill their dome and continue to be one of the top teams in the country,” said Draper. “With Jac’cara being our only senior this year and a Gainesville native, it will be really fun for her to also play in front of her hometown fans.” USF begins a busy week at home on Sept. 17 with a midweek tilt against Jacksonville University. The Bulls then host the USF Invitational Sept. 20-21.USF faces Indiana for the second time in program history on the first day, then takes on the Hoosiers once more on the second day. Tournament play wraps up with Stetson in the nightcap on Sept. 21.The final nonconference tune-up is Sept. 24 at Bethune-Cookman. “Indiana is a Big Ten team on the rise and we will have a tremendous opportunity to play them twice at home, in addition to Stetson, North Florida, and Jacksonville,” said Draper. American Made The American continues to improve each season, as five teams appeared in the postseason last year. USF opens up at home on Sept. 27 with Temple. USF hosts UConn on Sept. 29 to close out the month. The Bulls will alternate home and road weekends during conference play from there, as they head to ECU (Oct. 4) and Cincinnati (Oct. 6). The first installment of the War on I-4 is in Tampa on Oct. 11. The Knights are the defending league champions, finishing with a 18-0 mark in The American. USF took its rivals to a five-set thriller last season at home. The Bulls then welcome SMU on Oct. 13. The Bulls are at Tulsa (Oct. 18) and Wichita St. (Oct. 20) before home contests against Tulane (Oct. 25) and Houston (Oct. 27) conclude October. November begins with the second meeting with the Knights (Nov. 1) before a trip to Memphis (Nov. 3). The final weekend in Tampa welcomes Cincinnati (Nov. 8) and ECU (Nov. 10). The regular season finishes up north with matchups at UConn (Nov. 14) and Temple (Nov. 16). “I am glad to be staying in state for much of the preseason, as our conference travel is fairly intense,” said Draper. “With the conference scheduling format changing, there will now be an east and a west division as well as a conference tournament.” New Beginnings The inaugural American Athletic Conference Tournament will be held Nov. 22-24 in Orlando. The league will be split into two divisions for the 2019 season. The top six teams will qualify for the tournament, as the top team from each division will receive a first-round bye. “Our league will look very different this year than it has in the past,” said Draper. “I think that having a conference tournament will really keep our conference competitive throughout the entire season and there will always be something to play for. Our league graduated very few seniors and there will be several elite teams in our conference this year.” Take a look at the complete 2019 Schedule.
  13. USF ATHLETICS GoUSFBulls.com FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Web Link: http://bit.ly/2UWtmzV Bulls Announce Four Additions to the 2019 Squad The four signees will provide a combination of size and athleticism from the outside TAMPA, MAY 3, 2019 – Head coach Courtney Draper and the USF volleyball program have announced four more NLI signings for the 2019 roster. The additions join Makayla Washington, Ally Barnhart and Jordan Valley, whom USF secured during the fall signing period. Eboni Harris | 6-0 | Outside Hitter | Ocala, Fla. | Vanguard HS Harris spent her freshman season at Alabama and will be a redshirt freshman in 2019. She played for the club team Ocala Power United under coach Jeff Reavis. Harris was a four-year letterman at Vanguard High School, playing for coaches Jason Morris and Randy Ewers. Harris was named to the Ocala Star Banner All-County Team as a freshman, sophomore and junior and was named the Ocala Star Banner Player of the Year in 2017. She was named to the AAU Girls’ Junior National Volleyball Championships 15 and Under Club All-American Team in 2014, as well as to the PrepVolleyball Frosh 59 that year. She was named to the PrepVolleyball Class of 2018 Senior Aces, recognized as one of the top seniors in America. She qualified for the USA Volleyball Junior Olympics Nationals with seven different teams from 2010-17. Coach Draper on Harris: “I have enjoyed watching Eboni Harris for many years. She was a stand out in the state of Florida from a very young age. I think that she has the ability to really impact our program this season. Our entire staff and our team really connected with her on her visit and I think that she is a great addition to our program. Because we only return two outsides from last year’s team, it was critical for us to add depth in that area. I think that she has a fast arm and will be able to score at a high level.” Aleia Wilborn | 5-9 | Right Side | McKinney, Texas | McKinney HS Wilborn played for the club team Texas Advantage Volleyball in Carrolton, Texas under coach John Sample. She was a three-year varsity letterman at McKinney High School. Wilborn was named an Academic All-District as a junior and was the Co-MVP of the team in her freshman season. At the end of April, Aleia and her TAV team won the 18 Open National Championships in Dallas. Coach Draper on Wilborn: “Aleia is a dynamic athlete who is quick off the ground and has a great arm. She can play either on the outside or the right side, and I love her versatility. I think that she is very much a team player and is open to playing on either pin. Because of her excellent jumping ability, I also think that she can become an outstanding blocker for us. Having Aleia in the gym simply makes us a better team. She has played at the highest level possible for a long time now, and is used to college game speed even though she has not played in college yet.” Madisyn Lyons | 5-7 | Outside Hitters | Red Wing, Minn. | Red Wing HS Lyons played for the Mizuno Northern Lights club team in Burnsville, Minn., for coaches Bryna Thompson, Joanna Weber and Joy Johnston. The team went to Europe in 2018 with Bring It Promotions, traveling to Italy from March 26-April 3. Northern Lights finished third at the 2017 USAV Nationals. Lyons was a three-year varsity letter winner at Red Wing HS, playing for coach David Lyons. She was named team captain, MVP and All-Area First Team as a junior. She was again named the team captain as a senior along with being the offensive and defensive player of the year and All-Area First Team. Coach Draper on Lyons: “Madisyn came to us at the beginning of the semester after playing on the USF club team in the fall. We do not typically do tryouts during the academic year, but we were a little thin on players this spring, so we had her with our girls all spring and every week she showed improvement. She is a great teammate and a very hard worker. Those are the kind of athletes that you want in your gym. She is very fit and fast, and she is the type of player who is willing to try new things.” Jac St. Cin | 6-3 | Outside Hitter | St. Petersburg, Fla. | Shorecrest Prep St. Cin played at Shorecrest Preparatory School for coach Raquel Ferreira. She tallied 412 kills, 23 blocks, 95 digs and 45 aces as a sophomore. As a junior, St. Cin had 368 kills, 86 digs, 16 blocks and 50 aces. She was named a team captain as both a junior and senior and was the team MVP her junior season. She helped lead Shorecrest Prep to a state title in 2018. The St. Petersburg product was named to the Tampa Bay Times All-Tampa Bay Volleyball team as a freshman and sophomore, and earned the Pinellas Player of the Year following a stellar senior season. Coach Draper on St. Cin: “I am very familiar with Jac, because she is a local player that I have had the privilege to work with for many years. Jac has great size and has been extremely terminal on every team that she has competed for. It was exciting to see her high school team win state this year, and she has developed into one of the top players in the state of Florida over the past couple of years. It will be fun for her to play in front of a home crowd every week.”
  14. Ladies volleyball team has been invited to the NIVC. It’s the NIT tournament for volleyball. Will play at Georgia Tech Thursday in round 1. https://www.womensnivc.com/uploads/2/0/0/5/20054671/32_team_nivc_bracket2.pdf
  15. A 5' 9" outside hitter at this level is probably pretty rare, and her success makes it even more special. VB beat Memphis yesterday 3-0 to equal their win total from last year, 12.
  16. USF ATHLETICS GoUSFBulls.com FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Web Link: https://bit.ly/2PVdTxW MATCH: USF vs. UCF DATES: Friday, Sept. 21 LOCATION: The Corral (1,000) TWITTER UPDATES: @USFVolleyball WATCH: BullsVision LIVE STATS TICKETS Bulls and Knights Open Conference Play with War On I-4 Battle USF is off to its best start since 1996, fourth time in program history the team has begun 10-2 or better TAMPA, SEPTEMBER 20, 2018 – The 10-2 USF volleyball team looks to build on its best start since 1996 with a big time War On I-4 matchup against UCF to open up The American slate, Friday at 7 p.m. in the Corral. The Bulls went 2-1 at last weekend’s USF Classic, defeating North Dakota and New Orleans in straight sets on Friday before a tough five-set defeat at the hands of Charlotte on Saturday. USF had won 12-consecutive sets until the second against the 49ers, and were riding a seven-match winning streak. Sophomore middle blocker Jaeden Brown(Hollywood, Fla.) and junior outside hitter Jac’cara Walker (Gainesville, Fla.) were named to the USF Classic All-Tournament team. Walker led the Bulls with 40 kills, hitting .302. Brown had 28 kills and a team-high 11 blocks. Senior setter Briana Stowell (Orlando) had two doubles-doubles at the USF Classic, totaling 120 assists in the three matches. Redshirt senior Clara Payne (Osteen, Fla.) was sensational against Charlotte, tallying a career-high 21 kills. Nota-Bulls Head coach Courtney Draper earned her 100th win at USF with the victory against New Orleans on Friday, becoming the fifth coach in program history to do so. USF leads the all-time series against UCF, 50-35. The strong start to the year marks the fourth time USF has begun 10-2 or better. Two of the previous three instances ended with Conference USA titles in 1995 and 1996, resulting in NCAA Tournament appearances. Freshman libero CC Clausen (The Woodlands, Texas) is second in The American and 23rd nationally with 248 digs this season. The Bulls lead The American and are 21st in the country with 17.38 digs per set. Five members of the team have 110 or more digs. Walker leads the team with 138 kills. Stowell is second in the conference with 459 assists this year. She and Walker are tied for the team lead with six double-doubles. Get to Know the Opponent The Knights enter the weekend having an impressive season at 9-3. UCF defeated then-No. 7 USC on Sept. 1 in four sets. The success has been predicated on the great play of freshman outside hitter McKenna Melville, who sits second in the conference and 16th nationally in both kills per set (4.52) and points per set (5.02). The Knights lead The American and are 13th nationally with 14.31 kills per set. Sisters Erin Olson and and Amber Olson have split time at setter this year with 282 and 232 assists, respectively. As a team, UCF ranks eighth in the country with 13.62 assists per set.
  17. USF ATHLETICS GoUSFBulls.com FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Web Link: https://bit.ly/2NK2Iux Draper Earns 100th Career Win at USF; Bulls Go 2-0 on Day One of USF Classic The Bulls have now won seven straight matches USF continues its best start since 1996 The Bulls have won 11 consecutive sets dating back to Sept. 7 against LIU Brooklyn TAMPA, SEPTEMBER 14, 2018 – The USF volleyball team continued its scorching hot stretch, extending its win streak to seven with a perfect 2-0 opening day at the USF Classic behind straight sets triumphs against North Dakota (25-23, 25-21, 25-20) and New Orleans (25-13, 25-15, 25-22). The Bulls (10-1) were powered by the excellent play of junior outside hitter Jac’cara Walker(Gainesville, Fla.) in the straight sets win against the Fighting Hawks (7-7). The transfer had a match high 19 kills without any errors, hitting .594 to go along 10 digs for her third double-double of the season. The first set was back-and-forth, but eight kills from Walker and a combined 23 as a team gave USF a 25-23 win. Sophomore Nikkia Benitez (Miami) began the catch fire in the second set with six kills, as a 6-0 USF run made it 18-8 at one point. Walker had another eight kills in the third and final set, as USF completed its second-straight sweep with a 25-20 win. Against the Privateers (6-7), Benitez did her best to match Walker and may have one upped her fellow outside hitter. The athletic sophomore had a career best 15 kills with a match high 12 digs. She was as efficient as can be with just two errors on 19 attacks for a .684 hitting percentage. Notables The 10-1 start to the year is the best for the program since 1996. USF began that season 11-1 before suffering its second loss. Walker totaled 28 kills and 18 digs in the two wins. Benitez had 26 kills with 20 digs on the day. Senior setter Briana Stowell (Orlando) recorded 63 assists and 22 digs in the two matches. Key Stats 100 – Wins for head coach Courtney Draper at USF. She becomes the fifth coach in program history to reach the milestone. 11 – Consecutive sets the Bulls have won. .356 – USF’s hitting percentage against New Orleans. The Bulls hit .581 in the second set. 6 – Stowell had her sixth double-double of the year with 38 assists and 13 digs against North Dakota. Quotables Head coach Courtney Draper on the way the team has been able to execute so well over the last few matches: "I told the team at the end of today, especially those first two sets, they have that ability to dominate. We were sharp, hitting at a great clip for much of the day. If the offense was a concern a couple weeks ago, it’s certainly been a bright spot of late.” Head coach Courtney Draper talks about the big performances of Jac’cara Walker and Nikkia Benitez: “Jac’cara’s game is so smooth, she has such a high level of understanding the game and is fun to watch. Nikkia is such a physical player and very smart. She knows how to attack the open spot and I’m really proud of what both them were able to accomplish today.” Head coach Courtney Draper on Briana Stowell’s effect on the whole team: “We’re flowing so well right now and working so well as a unit and a lot of that credit goes to Bri. She’s such a calm player and understands what she’s seeing on the other side. Her vision keeps improving and she knows exactly where to put the ball for our hitters.” Head coach Courtney Draper reflects on getting to 100 wins at USF: “It really has little to do with just me and everything to do with our amazing players and the incredible staff I have the privilege of working with. I’m just a small piece of it all, but doing it tonight was awesome with such a fun atmosphere and crowd to celebrate something so special.” Up Next The Bulls close out the USF Classic against Charlotte Saturday at noon. USF will look to make it a third tournament win and third perfect weekend.
  18. USF ATHLETICS GoUSFBulls.com FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Web Link: https://bit.ly/2Ms4prH EVENT: USF Classic DATES: Friday, Sept. 14 – Saturday, Sept. 15 USF SCHEDULE: Friday – vs. North Dakota, 11 a.m., vs. New Orleans, 7 p.m.; Saturday – vs. Charlotte, noon LOCATION: The Corral (1,000) TWITTER UPDATES: @USFVolleyball WATCH: YouTube (vs. New Orleans and Charlotte) LIVE STATS 8-1 Bulls Return Home for USF Classic USF hosts North Dakota, New Orleans and Charlotte in the year’s final tournament; Bulls look to match best start since 1996 TAMPA, SEPTEMBER 13, 2018 – The 8-1 USF volleyball team returns home for the first time since Aug. 25, looking to add to the already impressive start, as it hosts the USF Classic Sept. 14-15. The Bulls are coming off yet another perfect 3-0 weekend after winning the Blackbird Invitational in Brooklyn, N.Y. USF defeated George Washington in four sets to begin the tournament and delivered LIU Brooklyn its first home loss in nearly two years with a four-set victory. USF took care of Holy Cross in straight sets on Saturday. Sophomore middle blocker Jaeden Brown(Hollywood, Fla.) was named the tournament MVP for her all-around weekend. She had 31 kills and 20 blocks, recording a career high seven in the wins against the Blackbirds and Crusaders. Brown was named The American Defensive Player of the Week on Monday. Senior setter Briana Stowell (Orlando) did it all in Brooklyn, recording 105 assists, 31 digs, 11 kills and seven aces. She had two double-doubles, flirted with a triple-double against LIU Brooklyn and was named to the Blackbird Invitational All-Tournament team. Redshirt senior Clara Payne (Osteen, Fla.) joined Brown and Stowell on the all-tournament team in Brooklyn, leading USF with 34 kills over the three matches. Nota-Bulls Head coach Courtney Draper needs just two more wins to reach 100 career victories at USF. The 8-1 start is the best for the program since 1996, when the Bulls began the year 11-1. Freshman libero CC Clausen (The Woodlands, Texas) leads The American and is 20th nationally with 194 digs this season. The Bulls lead The American and are 27th in the country with 17.13 digs per set. Five members of the team have 80 or more digs. Junior outside hitter Jac’cara Walker(Gainesville, Fla.) leads the team with 96 kills. Stowell has four double-doubles this season. Brown is second on the team with 92 kills. She’s hitting .308 and leads the squad with 44 blocks. Get to Know the Opponents North Dakota The defending Big Sky champs and winners of 30 matches from a season ago are led by a familiar face to USF. UConn transfer, outside hitter Kayla Williams has 149 kills this season with 15 aces. Setter Roosa Rautio leads the team with 424 assists and Taliyah Flores has a team high 147 digs. New Orleans The Privateers had won five-straight matches prior to Saturday, and are clicking heading into this weekend. Junior outside hitter Brianna Vega leads the team with 88 kills. Classmate and setter Sarah Thomas has 278 assists. Charlotte The 49ers have won five of the last seven matches, most recently a straight sets win at ECU. Senior outside hitter Reeana Richardson is ninth nationally with 180 kills on the season. The team leads the country with 119 total blocks, is third with 751 team digs and ninth with 538 assists. Reigning Conference USA Libero of the Year, junior Yumi Garcia is second in the country with 6.30 digs per set. Freshman setter Nya Steele has done a great job of facilitating the offense with 410 assists.
  19. USF ATHLETICS GoUSFBulls.com FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Web Link: https://bit.ly/2oSHNaG Bulls Win Blackbird Invitational with Straight-Sets Defeat of Holy Cross USF off to its best start since 1996 BROOKLYN, N.Y., SEPTEMBER 8, 2018 – The USF volleyball team put it all together on Saturday morning with its first straight-sets victory of the year, defeating Holy Cross to go a perfect 3-0 at this weekend’s Blackbird Invitational, hosted by LIU Brooklyn. The Bulls (8-1) and Crusaders (1-9) were in a battle in the opening set, as consecutive kills from redshirt senior middle blocker Clara Payne (Osteen, Fla.) and junior outside hitter Jac’cara Walker (Gainesville, Fla.) tilted the score to 25-23. USF owned the second set, 25-14, then faced a 8-4 deficit in the third set. The Bulls turned things around and eventually grabbed a 14-8 lead in the set, never looking back. Walker led the way with 11 kills. Senior setter Briana Stowell (Orlando) had her second double-double of the weekend with 32 assists and 10 digs. She also added three more aces and totaled seven at the tournament. Quotables Head coach Courtney Draper talking about the 3-0 weekend: "I’m really proud of the team effort this weekend. Everyone has a silent confidence about them right now and going 3-0 this weekend feels great. Our opponents continue to challenge us in difference ways, yet this team keeps rising to the occasion.” Notables The 8-1 start to the year is the best for the program since 1996. USF began that season 11-1 before suffering its second loss. Payne led USF with 36 kills in Brooklyn, swinging .357. Sophomore middle blocker Jaeden Brown (Hollywood, Fla.) had 31 kills and 20 total blocks at Blackbird Invitational. She recorded seven in each of the final two matches. Stowell had 115 assists and 31 digs at the tournament. Walker had 28 kills and 23 digs in the three matches. Key Stats 98 – Head coach Courtney Draper sits at career 98 wins at USF. 1 – The Bulls are one of just two teams in The American with only one loss. Houston is 9-1, followed by Cincinnati with a 7-2 record. Up Next The Bulls return home for the final tournament of the year, as they host the Tiger Classic Sept. 14-15. USF will face North Dakota, UNC Charlotte and the University of New Orleans.
  20. USF ATHLETICS GoUSFBulls.com FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Web Link: https://bit.ly/2MvQp5d EVENT: Tiger Classic DATES: Friday, Aug. 31 – Saturday, Sept. 1 USF SCHEDULE: Friday – vs. Duke, 11 a.m., vs. Texas A&M Corpus Christi, 6:30 p.m.; Saturday – at LSU, 2 p.m. LOCATION: Maravich Center, Baton Rouge, La. WATCH: USF at LSU, Saturday SECN+ TWITTER UPDATES: @USFVolleyball LIVE STATS 3-0 Bulls Head to Baton Rouge for the Tiger Classic USF will face Duke, Texas A&M Corpus Christi and LSU at the two-day tournament TAMPA, AUGUST 30, 2018 – The USF volleyball team prepares for its first road trip of 2018, as it travels to Baton Rouge, La., for the Tiger Classic Aug. 31 – Sept. 1. The Bulls began the season 3-0 for the second time in the last three years with an undefeated weekend hosting the USF Invitational. After defeating San Jose State in four sets to open the season, the Bulls were tested to the brink, battling through five sets against Jacksonville and Stony Brook. USF was able to defend its home court and persevered in both matches to close out the tournament. Junior outside hitter Jac’cara Walker (Gainesville, Fla.), senior middle blocker Clara Payne (Osteen, Fla.) and senior setter Briana Stowell (Orlando) earned all-tournament honors. Walker was named the tournament MVP and, along with freshman libero CC Clausen (The Woodlands, Texas), was named to the American Athletic Conference Weekly Honor Roll on Monday. Nota-Bulls Walker led the Bulls with 43 kills during the opening weekend. She had her best match against Stony Brook on Saturday with 21 kills and 20 digs. Clausen tallied 60 digs in her first collegiate tournament. She also shined against the Seawolves with 31 digs, a figure that tied for the sixth most in a single match in program history. USF was stout at the net, totaling 28.5 total blocks (43 block assists and seven solo blocks). Sophomore middle blocker Jaeden Brown (Hollywood, Fla.), redshirt sophomore Nyemba Musemuna (Avon, Ind.) and Payne each had more than 10 blocks apiece. Both Brown and Musemuna had career weekends, tallying 27 kills and 12 kills, respectively. Stowell led all performers at the USF Invitational with 111 assists. She also added 23 digs and 13 kills from the setter position. Get to Know the Opponents Duke The Blue Devils are coming off a 19-12 season in 2017 and opened the year 0-2. Duke had two tests against No. 8 BYU in Durham, dropping all but one set last weekend. Duke is led by freshman middle hitter Ade Owokoniran with 24 kills. Redshirt junior middle blocker Leah Meyer was preseason All-ACC a year ago before missing most of the year due to injury. Texas A&M Corpus Christi The Islanders are full of youth, with freshman middle blocker Rachel Young leading the team in kills (32) and hitting percentage (.314), sophomore setter Mackenzie Coates leading them in assists (91) and sophomore libero Jenna Krenk leading them in digs (41). Over the last three seasons, the Islanders are 70-31 with a pair of NCAA Tournament appearances. LSU This weekend’s hosts are looking to repeat 2017’s success that ended in a 20-10 record, 11-7 SEC mark and NCAA Tournament appearance. The Tigers defeated USF in straight sets last season in Tampa, and are again led by 6-foot-5 outside hitter, sophomore Taylor Bannister. She was an AVCA All-America Honorable Mention, the AVCA South Region Freshman of the Year and All-SEC in 2017. Senior setter Lindsay Flory had 78 assists in the opening weekend and sophomore libero Raigen Cianciulli had 36 digs.
  21. USF ATHLETICS GoUSFBulls.com FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Web Link: https://bit.ly/2BHhNrK Balanced Bulls Begin Season 2-0, Defeating San Jose State and Jacksonville USF begins a season 2-0 for the third time in the last five years TAMPA, AUGUST 24, 2018 – With kills from eight different players, the USF volleyball team did what it needed to on the opening day of the USF Invitational and began 2018 with two wins in front of the home crowd. The Bulls (2-0) began the season with an impressive four-set win against San Jose State (25-19, 17-25, 25-17, 25-14), led by 10 kills from redshirt senior middle blocker Clara Payne(Osteen, Fla.). Fellow senior Briana Stowell(Orlando) officially took the reigns as the team’s primary setter and had 28 assists in the opening match. After dropping the second set to the Spartans (0-2), USF took care of business in the third and dominated the fourth, winning 25-14 behind a combined 17 points from Payne, sophomore middle blocker Jaeden Brown (Hollywood, Fla.), junior outside hitter Jac’cara Walker (Gainesville, Fla.) and freshman outside hitter Lindsey Pliapol(Daytona Beach, Fla.). The Bulls got started early in their second match of the USF Invitational, taking a quick 1-0 lead against Jacksonville in the nightcap. The quartet of Payne, Brown, Walker and Pliapol again led the way in the opening set, guiding the Bulls to a 25-18 win. The Dolphins (0-2) took the next two sets (25-22, 25-23), but USF fed off the crowds energy and regained control in the fourth set, winning 25-21. The Bulls were able to complete their perfect day with a fifth set win, 15-11. Notables The Bulls played 13 players on the day, as head coach Courtney Draper saw many different looks in certain situations. USF is 2-0 for the third time in the last five years. Brown had 16 kills and 10 blocks in the two matches. Redshirt sophomore middle hitter Nyemba Musemuna (Avon, Ind.) had appeared in just 22 sets and totaled five kills in her USF career. After missing her freshman campaign due to injury, she worked her way back in 2017, but gave the Bulls another element with six kills and 10 blocks on the opening day. Walker led USF with 16 kills against Jacksonville and had 22 on the day. Payne tallied 18 kills, hitting .405 in the two matches, while totaling eight blocks. Key Stats 33 – The Bulls were more like trees at the net, denying the opposition 21 times in the two matches (33 block assists, five solo blocks). 58 – Stowell had 58 assists in the two matches and had her first double-double of the year in the match against the Dolphins (30 assists, 13 digs). 29 – Talented freshman libero CC Clausen (The Woodlands, Texas) impressed in her first collegiate action, combining for 29 digs and 10 assists on the day. Quotables Head coach Courtney Draper on starting the season 2-0: "It’s very exciting to open with two wins, but neither match was easy. We’re playing a couple NCAA tournament teams from last season here this weekend, so to get off to a good start was great to see.” Head coach Courtney Draper discussing the different contributions, playing so many girls: “I’m most proud of the collective effort today from everyone on the team. Everybody contributed in many different ways. The whole team took turns and picked one another up. Depending on the matchups we’re getting, we can go with a variety of looks.” Head coach Courtney Draper on Jac’cara Walker’s impact, in her first season coming from Marshall: “Jac’cara Walker just has a ton of game. She’s maybe a little undersized, but makes some great digs and big plays, she’s crafty with her attack and a really important piece to this team.” Head coach Courtney Draper speaking about Nyemba Musemuna’s big day: “Nye had some great plays in key moments today to give us momentum when we needed it. She was playing in a different position and still excelled. As someone who is still rather new to the game, she’s very coachable and it’s been paying off. She was applying pressure to the opposing team all day and was critical to the success we had.” Up Next The Bulls will look to make it a 3-0 weekend at the USF Invitational, but it won’t be easy. The tourney concludes at 1 p.m. against Stony Brook, the defending America East champion that also went 2-0 on Friday.
  22. Round one of Bulls Q and A, starting with the legend of the USF airwaves, Jim Louk. From GoUSFBulls.com: Since 1983, Jim Louk has been the voice of USF Athletics. Louk came to USF that year as the radio play-by-play announcer for the USF men's basketball team and served as the lead voice until the conclusion of the 1996-97 season. He then made the transition to football in USF's inaugural 1997 campaign, and still serves as the team's play-by-play announcer today. You've seen a number of his written features over the years as well. Questions for Jim can range from this season to waaaaaaay back in the beginning of Bulls Football. Jim's Q&A from last season Please get your questions in as fast as you can. Feel free to post them here or email using this email link. My goal is to turn the questions in to Jim be end of day Wednesday, August 15th. Thanks, Brad
  23. USF ATHLETICS GoUSFBulls.com FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Web Link: https://bit.ly/2xhN2Yb USF Volleyball Recruiting Class Recognized by PrepVolleyball The Bulls signed five talented freshman and added a skilled transfer to the 2018 roster TAMPA, May 29, 2018 – The University of South Florida volleyball team’s 2018 recruiting class was recognized by PrepVolleyball.com and named honorable mention in the American Athletic Conference. The Bulls began shaping the recruiting class by signing four tall, athletic and talented freshman in November with 6-foot-1 setter Lauren LaBeck (Round Lake, Ill.), 6-foot-3 middle blocker Nicole Legg (Union, Ky.), 6-foot-2 right side hitter Peyton Thompson (Spartanburg, S.C.) and 6-foot-0 outside hitter Lindsey Pliapol (Daytona Beach, Fla.). The last addition to the new faces was libero CC Clausen (The Woodlands, Texas), signed in April. LaBeck tallied a school-record 1,795 career assists at Grayslake Central. In her senior season, she set a single-season school record with 784 assists, 53 service aces and 49 kills. Legg was a four-year varsity letter winner at Larry A. Ryle High School and played in 397 sets with 1,109 kills, a .364 hitting percentage, 151 blocks and 44 aces. She was named to the Under Armour Watchlist in 2015, 2016 and 2017. Thompson was a four-year varsity letter winner at Spartanburg Christian Academy. She posted career numbers of 2,015 kills, 259 blocks, 262 digs and 203 service aces. Thompson was named the VCISA 2A Player of the Year as a sophomore and junior. Pliapol was a four-year varsity letter winner at Spruce Creek High School. She tallied 1,025 career kills, 190 blocks, 968 digs and 173 aces. She was named team captain as a senior and earned the AVCA Under Armour All-American Award all four years. As a junior, she was named the Spectrum Sports Player of the Year for volleyball. Clausen set The Woodlands College Park HS record for career digs with 1,763. Clausen was named the school's defensive MVP and to the All-District team each season. She set the Houston Skyline Juniors single season dig record twice, last doing it as a junior with 633. She was named the PrepVB Defensive Dandy and to the AVCA Phenom List as a sophomore and junior. “I think that this 2018 class will make a big impact in our program,” said head coach Courtney Draper. “These athletes are so excited to compete for USF. They come in with some incredible accomplishments, including multiple National Championships at the highest level of club volleyball. I can’t wait for their arrival and to see them integrate with our outstanding group of returners. This is going to be a very fun upcoming season.”
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