PHILADELPHIA – Temple volleyball will play three matches in two days as it travels across town to play at the Palestra in the Sheraton University City Invitational. Temple opens the weekend slate of games with a match against Providence on Friday at noon ET. The next day the Owls will face off against George Washington at 1:30 p.m. and the host Penn at 5:30 p.m. The Penn/Temple contest will be the only Owl match available this weekend on ESPN+.
- Temple returns to Philadelphia, but will travel across town to the Palestra to play in the Sheraton University City Invitational as it will take on Providence, George Washington, and Penn.
- Coming into this weekend, the Owls are 4-4 overall after finishing with a 1-2 record at the Cornell Tournament. Temple dropped back-to-back matches versus UAlbany (1-3) and Colgate (1-3), but picked up a win in its last match of the weekend against the host, Cornell in five sets (3-2).
- Providence comes into this weekend with a 7-2 overall record after hosting the Friar Classic last weekend, going 3-0. On Friday versus St. Peters, the Friars earned a 3-0 victory, and added a pair of victories the next day against NJIT (3-1) and Holy Cross (3-0).
- The Quakers enter the weekend 0-6. Last weekend in California, Penn lost all three of its matches by the score of 3-0. On Friday, UP lost to Cal State Northridge and St. Mary’s and on Saturday fell to San Francisco.
- The Colonials have started 3-7 this season. Last weekend, GW finished 1-2 on the opening day of Dig the District with a win over Binghamton (0-3) and Rider (3-2). On Saturday, George Washington was swept by Georgetown. And in their first midweek action of the season on Tuesday, the Colonials fell to Coppin State.
- The Owls are led by head coach Linda Hampton Keith who is in her first season on North Broad and has a career record of 71-60. Prior to Temple, Hampton-Keith spent time with the NC State Wolfpack from 2016-19 and led them to a NCAA Regionals appearance in 2017.
OWL ABOUT TEMPLE IN 2022
- As the season begins, the Linda Hampton-Keith Era has begun as head coach for the Temple Owls volleyball team, making her the ninth volleyball head coach in school history. Hampton-Keith comes into the season with a career record of 67-56, an NCAA Regional appearance in four years at NC State between 2016-19. Hampton-Keith takes over an Owls team that went 7-24 overall, and 3-17 in AAC play a season ago. This year’s roster includes 11 returners featuring one red-shirt senior, two juniors, and nine sophomores.
- Temple comes into the weekend 4-4 after going 1-2 last weekend at the Cornell Tournament, losing to UAlbany (1-3) and Colgate (1-3) in four sets, but ended the tournament with a hard-fought five-set win over Cornell. With the win, the Owls moved to 3-0 in five-set matches in 2022. Sophomore outside hitter Taylor Davenport led the Owls with 50 kills. Last week at Cornell, Davenport led the Owls in two matches, including reaching 20 kills versus Cornell. It was the third time this season that the Columbia, S.C. native eclipsed the 20-kill mark, and on the season, she leads the team with 129 kills, ranking fourth in the AAC conference.
- The Owls begin this season with two new faces to Philly, but not new faces to DI collegiate volleyball. Junior Jelena Prolic and sophomore Chudear Tut were added to head coach Linda Hampton-Keith‘s roster in April and will look to bolster the Owls’ offensive attack in 2022. Prolic spent the past three seasons with Coastal Carolina, earning herself two Sun Belt East Championships and two trips to the conference championship round. The Subotica, Serbia native played in 73 matches for the Chanticleers from 2019-21, tallying 176 kills and digging 197 balls from the outside hitter position. Tut, a former MEAC Rookie of the Year, Second Team All-MEAC, All-Tournament Team from Coppin State will help hold the middle for the Owls. During the spring season of 2021, Tut led the team with 56 blocks and second with 151 kills. Additionally, she recorded 10 or more kills 10 times and double-digit blocks in all but one contest. Just last season, the Minneapolis, Minn. native missed the first half of the year due to injury but finished with a school-record .353 hitting percentage on 98 kills.
- So far in 2022, Prolic has been key to the offense, tallying double-digit kills in six of the eight matches. Prolic is second on the team with 98 kills and had a career-high 19 putaways versus Delaware on Aug. 26. Two weekends ago, Tut was big in the four-set victory over Army as she recorded 12 kills, her first double-digit kill match in a Owls uniform.
- Sophomore Patrycja Zielinska has led the Temple offense this season to a 4-4 overall record. A season ago, Zielinska recorded 827 assists in 31 matches. She is one of only three players this season in the AAC to average over 10 assists/set (10.06), which is third best in the AAC. In 2022, the Francizkow, Poland native has dished out 278 assists already. On two occasions, this season Zielinska has topped the 50-plus assists mark twice in a match. On Sept. 3 versus St. Francis (Brooklyn), Zielinska guided the Owls to a five-set win with a career-high 57 assists.
DEFENDING THE BACK ROW
- Going into 2022, Frank Danielson had 797 career digs after a career-high 470 in 2021. The 2020 AAC Libero of the Year is looking for her 1000th-career dig, currently at 914. Danielson has recorded 117 digs already in 2022 while averaging 3.55 digs/set, good for sixth in the AAC. The Ewa Beach, Hawaii native, set a season-high in digs in the five-set win versus UAlbany on Friday as she recorded a season-high 25, marking the 16th time in her career Danielson achieved the 20-plus assists mark.
- Through eight season matches, freshman defensive Nalani McBride recorded 48 digs, with a career-high 11, twice, against St. Francis and Cornell. Fellow defensive specialist Nikki Shimao also played a big part in the Owls’ success as she set a career-high 15 digs against UAlbany, totaling 60 so far this season.
- Through eight matches into her career, middle blocker Samantha Jo Mikosky has been a steady force, not just as a middle blocker, but also at the service line. So far in the early season, Mikosky has averaged a third-best 1.22 blocks/set, including a career-high 11 versus Colgate on Sept. 10, which ranks as the third-best mark in school history for a single match. Her 39 total blocks are the second-best in the AAC. From the service line, the Bethlehem, Pa. native has connected with eight service aces, including a career-high three in the five-set win versus Cornell on Sept. 10.
- Kayla Grant has helped the Friars to seven wins through the first nine games with a Big East-leading .413 hitting percentage, totaling 80 kills. Three other P.C. players have 80-plus kills, including Shaliyah Rhoden with a team-high 93, 88 from Emma Nelson, and 83 from Niah Tucker. Providence also features three of the top five servers in the Big East, including Mackenzie Taylor and Brielle Mullaly with a league-best 35 service aces, while Sammie Ruggles and Sasha Rudich are tied for the second with 34.
TEMPLE VS. PROVIDENCE
- The Friars and Owls have met on the volleyball court 11 times all-time, with the P.C. leading the all-time series with an 8-3 record. The two teams first met 39 years ago (1983) and last met in 1987.
- Madeline McGregor leads the Quakers with 54 kills, while averaging 2.70 kills/set, and Madison Risch is the only other Penn player with 50-plus kills (51), averaging 2.68. In addition, setter Anna Shohfi is fifth in the Ivy League Conference with 8.67 assists/set and tied for fifth with 130 assists.
TEMPLE VS. PENN
- The cross-town rivals have met in 34 times throughout their program’s history, with Temple leading all-time series with a 22-12 record. Just last year, the Owls knocked off Penn, 3-1. Setter Patrycja Zielinska led Temple to victory with 41 assists behind an attack that hit .290 in the match. Junior Kayla Spells tallied seven kills and a team-high four blocks in the win on her way to All-City Classic team accolades.
SCOUTING GEORGE WASHINGTON
- Liv Womble and Elizabeth Drelling lead the Colonials’ offensive attack this season, as each player has recorded 100-plus kills. The junior Womble has averaged 3.17 kills/set, which is good for fourth in the Atlantic 10, while her 114 kills are third-best. Fellow junior Drelling ranks sixth with 100 kills, averaging a ninth-best 2.86 kills/set.
TEMPLE VS. GEORGE WASHINGTON
- This will be the 57th meeting between the former Atlantic 10 schools in the all-time matchup, with each team winning 28 games. The series dates back to 1983, but the two teams haven’t met since the 2012 season.
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