Stretch run starts with trips to Wise and Tusculum

VIDEO: Ashley Tiernan Interview

C-N Match Notes (PDF)

JEFFERSON CITY, Tenn. – With six matches remaining in the regular season, Carson-Newman looks to keep its October mojo working entering the final month of the year with a road trip to UVa-Wise Friday at 7 p.m. and to Tusculum Saturday at 5 p.m.

"It's been a great month," Carson-Newman coach Ashley Tiernan said. "October definitely showed us what we are capable of doing. I am very, very proud of this team. It's the same message and the same game going into November. We are going to keep pushing forward and keep focusing on the things we've been focusing on.

"These six seniors have done a phenomenal job leading this program the past four years. I want them to have a great experience. When they leave, I want them to look and say not only did I work hard but I had fun doing it."

In the first-ever meeting with UVa-Wise (1-20, 0-16), Carson-Newman (17-6, 11-5) spread the wealth watching seven players tally at least three kills hitting .239 in a sweep on Sept. 13 at Holt Fieldhouse. Erin Edwards (Midlothian, Va.) paced the Eagles attack with nine kills on a .350 hitting percentage while Marnie Streeter (Goldvein, Va.) needed just two sets to pound eight kills on a .280 clip adding five digs and a block.

It has been a tough first season as a member of the SAC for the Cavaliers. After winning a five-set match against Fayetteville State in the season opener, the unit has lost 20 straight matches. It is currently the fifth-longest active losing streak in Division II.

UVa-Wise has been swept 15 times having not won a set since Oct. 12 when it won the third game against Coker, a span of 19 stanzas. All told, the program has won a total of seven sets during the streak.

Coach Kristen Salyer's team has dropped 10 straight home matches dating back to a sweep of Glenville State on Oct. 20, 2018. The skid ranks as the eighth-longest skid of any team in the country.

As a team, it ranks last in the league in 11 different areas ranking in the bottom 10 of the nation in opponent attack percentage (.252) while hitting below .100 as a team for the year. Morgan Milligan is the only player on the roster to rank in the top 10 in any statistic placing ninth with 4.14 digs per set.

The Eagles are 29-33 all-time against Tusculum (12-10, 9-7) and are looking to win both regular-season meetings with the Pioneers for the first time since 2015. That season was also the last time that C-N posed back-to-back sweeps in the series.

When the clubs met on Sept. 14, the Orange and Blue cruised to a straight-set victory. Megan Oldenburger (Cedar Rapids, Iowa) led all players with 12 kills hitting .400. The Pioneers mustered an even .000 hitting percentage because of 22 attack errors.

The Pioneers closed out October strong winning four of the final to put themselves four games clear of the final position in the SAC Tournament with six matches to play in the regular season. Eight of the team's last 10 victories have come in three sets.

It is one of the best offensive teams in the conference ranking fourth 12.76 kills per set hitting .190 as a team on the season. Emiah Burrowes paces the crew with 3.36 kills per set to rank fourth. She had a forgettable night at Mossy Creek in the first meeting with three kills and five errors on 12 swings.

Two athletes rank in the top 15 in the nation in statistical categories. Catherine Clingan is 12th in the country with 0.55 service aces per set and Taylor Blythe is 13th in hitting percentage posting a .391 margin on the year.

Check back with @CNathletics on Twitter for the latest news and notes including game day links for the weekend's activities as the Eagles travel to Virginia and over to Greeneville.

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