Photo Courtesy of Jacob Turner
BANNER ELK, N.C. – The Lees-McRae College men's volleyball team will definitely put on some miles this week with four matches away from home, including three tilts in Hawaii. LMC will start its week at Belmont Abbey Tuesday before flying from Charlotte to Honolulu for matches at No. 3 Hawaii Thursday, against Thompson Rivers University Friday and an exhibition bout against a professional team in Academy United on Saturday.
Last Time Out - Lees-McRae won the first set of its match at North Greenville Saturday, but the latter would rally to win the match, 3-1. The loss puts LMC's record on the season at 1-5 overall and 0-2 in conference play.
Sophomore Stepping Up – Despite it being in a losing effort, Wes Rogman put together arguably his best effort of his collegiate career Saturday at NGU. Rogman finished with 17 kills to set a new career-high for the Plainfield, Illinois native. Rogman currently is second on the team with 57 kills.
Snapping the Skid – The Bobcats will look to snap their current three-match losing streak they are on this week. The skid is the longest for the program since last March when it dropped four straight contests.
Against Nationally Ranked Foes – When LMC and Hawaii face off Thursday night in Honolulu, it will mark the fourth time in the last two seasons that the Bobcats have faced a team ranked in the national polls. In 2017, the Bobcats dropped decisions to No. 8 Stanford and No. 13 UC Santa Barbara. Earlier this season, Lees-McRae fell on the road at No. 14 Ball State, 3-0.
Winning away from home – LMC will look to win first road or neutral site match of the season this week. Currently, Lees-McRae is 0-4 in such matches compared to a 1-1 mark at home.
About the Opponents – Like Lees-McRae, Belmont Abbey enters this week's action looking to snap a losing streak. The Crusaders are 1-3 overall and 0-1 in conference play after dropping their last two matches. Liam Maxwell has been BAC's top player so far in 2018 averaging 3.29 kills per frame.
No. 3 Hawaii comes into the week with a 7-1 record on the season. The only blemish on Hawaii's record so far is a four-set defeat at the hands of No. 2 UCLA. The strength of Hawaii's team is its offense. Collectively, Hawaii leads the nation in assists per set (12.59), kills per set (13.37) and is second in hitting percentage (.356).
Thompson Rivers University resides in Kamloops, British Columbia Canada, and it competes in the Canada West Universities Athletic Association. Since the calendar turned to 2018, the Wolfpack are 7-1 in their eight matches.
Academy United is professional men's volleyball team hailing from San Francisco, California. The squad boasts several players that have had extensive success as collegiate players at a variety of institutions.
Series Histories vs. Opponents – The only team that Lees-McRae plays this week that it has any previous history with is Belmont Abbey. LMC is 6-5 all-time against the Crusaders, including a 1-1 mark in 2017. Lees-McRae will be looking for its first win at Belmont Abbey since 2014 on Tuesday.