LUBBOCK, Texas – The Texas Tech volleyball team continues its road swing with an appearance at the NU Under Armour Challenge in Evanston, Ill., followed by a single match in DeKalb, Ill., at the campus of Northern Illinois.
Tech will face three opponents in its weekend tournament, beginning with an in-state showdown against Stephen F. Austin on Friday, Sept. 6. First serve is set for 1 p.m. and the Red Raiders will return to action later that night with a 7:30 p.m. contest against host Northwestern. Tech will conclude the tournament at 1 p.m. on Saturday against Austin Peay.
After a short time in Evanston, the Red Raiders will travel to DeKalb, Ill., to take on the Northern Illinois Huskies in an 11 a.m. match on Monday, Sept. 9.
Live stats will be available for all matches while two contests will be streamed. Tech's match against Northwestern will be showed on BTN+ ($) and fans can catch the Red Raiders take on Northern Illinois on ESPN+ ($).
RED RAIDER QUICK HITS
Collecting two double-doubles on opening weekend, Emily Hill started her senior year with a bang and earned the Big 12 Conference's first Offensive Player of the Week award of 2019. The weekly nod is the first of her career and the first weekly offensive award since Lauren Douglass was dubbed the league's Offensive Player of the Week on Sept. 1, 2014. The MVP of the Sports Imports Classic, Hill dominated the competition and led the league with a total of 66 kills on a .384 hitting percentage. After a 20-kill performance against VCU, she posted a career-high 29 kills in Tech's 3-2 victory over Ohio State and followed up with 17 more in Tech's weekend finale against Lehigh. Additionally, Hill leads the Red Raiders with nine service aces and 38 digs through 12 sets.
Three Red Raiders earned recognition for their efforts at Ohio State's Sports Imports Classic last weekend. Emily Hill was named the Tournament MVP while sophomores Karrington Jones and Alex Kirby both made the All-Tournament Team. Along with Hill, both sophomores set numerous career marks and stepped up to help Tech protect its 3-0 record.
In their first weekend of competition for the Red Raiders, freshmen Caitlin Dugan and Lindsey Dodson both made huge impacts on the court. Dodson accumulated 20 digs through 11 sets in her first tournament while Caitlin Dugan pounded 12 kills, including eight in Tech's key victory against the hosting Ohio State Buckeyes.
Texas Tech will be celebrating two team members during the month of September. Emily Hill will turn 21 years old on Tuesday, Sept. 17, and sophomore Alex Kirby will turn 19 on Sunday, Sept. 22.
As of Sept. 3, the Red Raiders pace the Big 12 in a number of categories. Tech currently leads the Big 12 Conference with 162 kills, 153 assists, 178 digs and 25 aces. The Red Raiders sit second in the league with 2.08 aces per set, 14.83 digs per set and a .289 hitting percentage.
Emily Hill and Brooke Kanas earned early honors as both the senior and sophomore were represented on the 2019 All-Big 12 Volleyball Preseason Team. Hill earned All-Big 12 second-team honors at the tail end of the 2018 season and Kanas was dubbed a member of the All-Big 12 Second and Freshman Team in her first season with the scarlet and black.
The Red Raiders welcome back 15 letterwinners from a strong 2018 season. The Tech roster contains four seniors, three juniors, nine sophomores and six freshman - highlighted by seniors Emily Hill and Chandler Atwood, juniors Allison White and Emerson Solano, as well as sophomores Brooke Kanas and Karrington Jones.
After a stellar outing at the U.S. Women's National Team Open Tryouts, sophomore Brooke Kanas became the fourth Red Raider in program history to earn a spot on the U.S. Women's Collegiate National Team. She spent June 23-29 training with the nation's domestic program in Anaheim, Calif. She is the youngest Red Raider to have spent a summer training with the U.S. Collegiate National Team.
Head coach Tony Graystone's third season at the helm pushed the team to new heights as the Red Raiders met program marks that have not been touched in over a decade. Texas Tech's 17 regular-season wins marked the most since 2001 and the squad's six Big 12 victories were the crew's highest win count since the 2004 season. Thanks to the leadership from Graystone, associate head coach Morgan Thomas and assistant coach Brandy Huskey, the Red Raiders put together back-to-back winning seasons for the first time since 2000-01.
Texas Tech welcomes seven new faces to the court in 2019 - six freshman and one sophomore transfer. Two freshmen, Cadi Boyer and Audrey Tuttle, graduated high school early and enrolled at Tech before the start of the 2019 spring semester. Other freshmen joining the crew are Caitlin Dugan, Lauren Dodson, Lindsey Dodson and Kylie Trefflich.
After Texas Tech graduated its most decorated setter to date, the Red Raiders will look to sophomore setter Alex Kirby to run a fresh new offense for the 2019 season. A native of Knoxville, Tenn., she finished her inaugural campaign with 63 assists - 31 of which came in her lone start of the season against Texas Southern last year.
The lone transfer to join the Red Raiders, sophomore Tatum Rohme comes to Texas Tech after a one-season stint at Arizona State. She made two appearances and accumulated 24 assists in her limited time as a Sun Devil.
The Texas Tech volleyball team was honored by the American Volleyball Coaches Association as an Academic Honor Roll Team after the squad posted a top-25 cumulative grade point average among all Division I institutions for the 2018-19 academic year. The prestigious honor was achieved thanks to a historic year in the classroom. In the fall, Tech placed a program-record 10 student-athletes on the Academic All-Big 12 Teams – nine first-team selections and one second-team nod. The Red Raiders also paced the Big 12 for the second straight year as four student-athletes recorded 4.00 grade point averages.
You're not just seeing things. Freshmen Lauren and Lindsey Dodson are one of the few pair sisters to grace the Texas Tech volleyball program. The Dodsons are the first set of twins that head coach Tony Graystone has ever coached in his 20 seasons of coaching.
Junior Emerson Solano returns to the floor after starting all 30 matches as Texas Tech's libero in 2018. Her 442 digs on the year ranked No. 10 in the school record book for digs per season and she ranked second in the Big 12 with 4.06 digs per set as a sophomore. Solano finished her second season with the Red Raiders with 22 double-digit dig performances and she tallied a career-high 22 digs at Houston Baptist on Sept. 14, 2018. Solano started all three games at libero to start the 2019 season.
A pair of Texas Tech volleyball matches have been selected to air on ESPNU while three other affairs are scheduled to broadcast on FOX Sports Networks. Tech's ESPN broadcasts begin with the Red Raiders' Sept. 25 match against West Virginia and will close with Tech's in-state showdown against Texas on Oct. 30. Additionally, the Red Raiders will appear on Fox Sports Networks against Houston (Sept. 20), Kansas (Oct. 16) and finally Iowa State (Nov. 20).
First Serve against Stephen F. Austin is slated for 1 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 6, in Evanston, Ill. Tech's Friday nightcap against Northwestern will begin at 7:30 p.m. and the Red Raiders will close out the tournament on Saturday with a 1 p.m. match against Austin Peay. Monday's meeting against the Huskies is slated for an 11 a.m. start. Live stats will be available for all four matches and a live stream will be available for Tech's matches against Northwestern and Northern Illinois.
For all the latest information on the Texas Tech volleyball team, visit TexasTech.com or follow @TexasTechVB on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.