The Cleveland State volleyball team will continue the 2021 campaign at Purdue Fort Wayne this week, facing the Mastodons in a pair of matches on Monday, February 22 and Tuesday, February 23. The Vikings enter the week with an even 4-4 record on the year, while Purdue Fort Wayne is currently 6-2 this season.
ENTERING THE WEEK…
The Vikings will be looking for their second series sweep of the season…Cleveland State will be trying to improve to 4-2 on the road this year…The Vikings will be facing Purdue Fort Wayne for the first time as #HLVB opponents.
SCOUTING THE MASTODONS
Purdue Fort Wayne enters the week with a 6-2 record on the year, and has currently won six straight matches over Robert Morris, IUPUI and Yougnstown State…Earlier this year, the Mastodons were selected to finish seventh in the #HLVB Preseason Poll in their first season as a member of the Horizon League…Purdue Fort Wayne leads the league averaging 14.96 kills per set, while the Mastodons rank second in hitting percentage (.294) and assists (13.68).
2021 #HLVB PLAY
This year's Horizon League schedule will have a different look to it, as the Vikings will face the same opponent in back-to-back matches each week. Cleveland State is scheduled to host two more #HLVB series against Robert Morris and Youngstown State, while the Vikings will still travel to Purdue Fort Wayne and Wright State throughout the rest of the season.
…NEW TO THE #HLVB LINEUP
Prior to the 2020-21 academic year, the Horizon League welcomed two new members, with Purdue Fort Wayne and Robert Morris joining the lineup. This week's matches against the Mastodons will be the first as Horizon League competitors, while the Vikings will face the Colonials next week for the first time in #HLVB play.
GREENE NAMED #HLVB PLAYER OF THE WEEK
Following the series split against Oakland last time out, senior Hannah Greene was named one of the Horizon League Players of the Week. Greene combined for a team-high 25 kills on a .367 hitting percentage against the Grizzlies, while also posting six total blocks. In the first match, Greene recorded a season-high 13 kills, while she followed that up with 12 kills in the series finale.
PENFIELD IN THE #HLVB STANDINGS
Entering the fifth week of the 2021 campaign, sophomore Chelsea Penfield continues to lead the Horizon League with 33 total blocks this year. Penfield, who has been Cleveland State's leading blocker in five matches this season, is averaging 1.18 blocks per set. Through the first eight matches, Penfield has tallied four or more total blocks in all but two contests, and has helped the Vikings to a second place standing as a team averaging 2.27 blocks per set.
MILLER LEADING THE VIKING OFFENSE
Freshman Abby Miller continues to lead the Viking offense, serving as Cleveland State's primary setter through the first four #HLVB series. So far this season, Miller is averaging 8.93 assists per set to rank fifth among league players. As just the third freshman to lead the Viking offense as the primary setter over the last 13 seasons, Miller has combined for 250 assists this year, including a season-high 45 at Northern Kentucky earlier this season (2/9/21).
VIKINGS FROM THE SERVICE LINE
Entering this week's series at Purdue Fort Wayne the Vikings have combined for 44 service aces through the first eight matches, including 10 from senior Emily DeGeorge. The Vikings are averaging 1.57 aces per set, and posted a season-high nine against Milwaukee earlier this year (2/2/21). So far this season, at least one Viking has posted two or more aces in every match, with a season-high coming from Emily DeGeorge when she notched four at Green Bay (1/26/21).
KUCIA IN THE CSU BACK ROW
Last time out, freshman Caroline Kucia served as the Cleveland State libero once again, averaging 2.50 digs per set against Oakland. Kucia, who stepped into the libero position during the NKU series, has recorded 65 total digs so far on her rookie campaign. Kucia has been leading a Viking defense that is averaging 15.11 digs per set on the season, holding their opponents to a .176 hitting percentage - the third lowest clip among #HLVB teams.
CAREER RECORD BOOK TRACKING: HANNAH GREENE
Entering the week, senior Hannah Greene is ranked in the top-10 in three CSU Career Record Book categories, as she is tied for eighth in block assists with 295, tied for ninth in solo blocks with 57 and 10th in total blocks with 352. Greene moved into the top-10 on the total blocks list after combining for six blocks against Oakland last time out, and is within striking distance of moving up the total blocks and solo blocks top-10 list.
CAREEr RECORD BOOK TRACKING: EMILY DEGEORGE
Senior Emily DeGeorge moved into seventh place on the CSU Career Digs List following the Oakland series last time out, entering the week with 1,211 career digs. DeGeorge combined for 23 digs against the Grizzlies, leading the Viking defense in both matches. Entering Monday's match at Purdue Fort Wayne, DeGeorge has tallied 66 double-digit dig matches during her time at CSU, and needs just four more digs to move into a tie for sixth place.
SCHOEN NAMED CLEVELAND STATE SAAC PRESIDENT
Prior to the 2020-21 academic school year, Cleveland State senior Halle Schoen was named the Cleveland State SAAC President, and will serve in the role for the remainder of the year. This will be Schoen's third year as an active member of CSU SAAC, as she was the Community Service Co-Chair as a junior and an active Board Member as a sophomore.
VIKINGS POST STRONG SEMESTER IN THE CLASSROOM
With the 2020 Fall Semester in the books, the Vikings posted one of their best semesters in program history, finishing with a 3.86 Team GPA for the term - the highest GPA among all 18 Cleveland State teams last semester. In addition, six Vikings were named to the Cleveland State President's List3.90+ (Halle Schoen, Audrey McConihe, Lydia Latimer, Keanna Avery, Sarah Green, Abby Miller), while nine Vikings earned a spot on the Cleveland State Dean's List3.25+ (Hannah Greene, Emily DeGeorge, Lindsey Tout, Chelsea Penfield, Peyton Bloomer, Caroline Kucia, Madalynn Butler, Ainslie McLaughlin, Sam Snow).
HEAD COACH CHUCK VOSS
Chuck Voss is in his 21st season at the helm of the Vikings, and owns a 366-238 (.605) overall record at Cleveland State. Under Voss the Vikings have recorded 16 winning seasons, including a streak of 10 straight from 2009 to 2018. Cleveland State has eclipsed the 20-win mark eight times since Voss took over the program, and has captured Horizon League Tournament titles five times (2007, 2012, 2015, 2016 & 2017) under his guidance. During the 2016 season Voss became the all-time winningest coach in program history, and then later became the only active Horizon League coach to reach the 350-win mark at their current school.
The Vikings will return home for a two-match series against Robert Morris on Monday, March 1 and Tuesday, March 2.