HATTIESBURG, Miss. -- The Southern Miss volleyball team will look to return to its winning ways with a 1 p.m. CT Sunday match at UTEP.
The Golden Eagles (13-6, 2-2 C-USA) have won four straight matches in the series and lead 11-5 all-time. The last meeting between the teams saw the Black and Gold rally two sets down to a 3-2 home win despite 21 blocks from the Miners. The second UTEP victory of the day even went up to 33-31. Sarah Bell had a career-high 19 digs in that marathon, and Stephany Purdue also added a match-high 21 kills.
Southern Miss had a tough one on Thursday against No. 25 Western Kentucky. The squad squeezed out a 28-26 Set One win before falling 27-25 in the second after also holding set-point. The Lady Toppers bounced back after intermission and won the next two, 25-20.
That Thursday match saw Chanel Joyce pace the team with a career-high 14 kills. It was just the second loss in eight matches for the Golden Eagles where Joyce had nine kills or more.
Stephany Purdue is still averaging four kills per set and is now 89 kills away from breaking the school record of 1,566 set by Tosha Barnicoat (1996-99).
Sarah Bell is chasing the school ranks of another career record. The sophomore on Thursday moved into ninth all-time at Southern Miss in assists and is within 354 of catching Beth Keck (1995-97).
Catherine Repsher still has a hold of second place in C-USA for blocks per set (1.27). In fact, her 10 blocks in her collegiate debut versus McNeese State still rank as the best performance in the league so far.
UTEP (3-13, 1-2 C-USA) on Friday swept Charlotte. The Miners also picked up their first league win at UAB and went five sets with second-place UTSA. The Miners actually lead the league in digs as well. Sarah Villa holds the top spot in the league for that category and Kylie Baumgartner ranks fifth in blocks.
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