Women's Volleyball Returns Home To Face Coppin State

Sept. 15, 2009

This week: Home Opener and Conference Opener

Coppin State Eagles (0-11 overall, 0-0 MEAC)

Loyola Greyhounds (4-8 overall, 0-0 MAAC)

When: Wednesday, September 16

Where: Reitz Arena

Time: 7 p.m.


Siena Saints (2-5 overall, 0-0 MAAC)

Loyola Greyhounds (4-8 overall, 0-0 MAAC)

When: Saturday, September 19

Where: Alumni Recreation Center (Loudonville, N.Y.)

Time: 2 p.m.


Marist Red Foxes (6-5 overall, 0-0 MAAC)

Loyola Greyhounds (4-8 overall, 0-0 MAAC)

When: Sunday, September 20

Where: McCann Field House (Poughkeepsie, N.Y.)

Time: 2 p.m.


Starting Off

Fresh Debuts

Six new freshmen will get to strut their stuff in front of a home Reitz Arena crowd for the first time Wednesday night when the Greyhounds host Coppin State in the 2009 home opener. Of the six, setter Aubrey Kirven, middle blocker Taylor Koncelik and outside hitters Katie Dircks and Janet Pressler have been regulars in the Greyhounds' starting lineup. Kirven has effectively taken the offensive reins, averaging 8.73 assists per game (358 total). Dircks leads the rookies with 101 kills and six blocks.

Scouting the Eagles

A roster full of freshmen composes the Coppin State team. Only a pair of upperclassmen is listed -- one senior and one junior -- with a trio of sophomores mixed in. The young team looks to be experiencing growing pains. The Eagles are averaging just 8.38 points per set and 6.09 kills per set. They have won only one of 34 sets played. However, Coppin's strong point is Loyola's weakest link. The Eagles have out-blocked opponents 44-39, while the Greyhounds have just 29 total blocks so far this season.

Conference Call

Loyola will be back on the road this weekend to begin MAAC play with matches at Siena and Marist. The Greyhounds enter conference play in fourth place; Siena is currently in seventh and Marist is in second after three weeks of non-conference play.

Scouting Siena

The defending MAAC champs are a block-heavy team this season. The Saints currently lead the MAAC in blocks per game, averaging 1.96. Burgandy McCurty and Nina Camaioni will go to battle against one another as two of the conference's top hitters. McCurty leads the MAAC with a 4.52 kill-per-set average, while Loyola's Camaioni holds the top spot in the total kills category with 167.

Scouting Marist

Marist ranks near the top of the conference in several categories. The Red Fox's numbers in hitting percentage (.203), assists per set (11.38) and kills (482 total, 12.05 per set) are all second in the MAAC, while their 89 service aces is the conference's high mark. Alexandra Shultze leads the team with 120 kills. Marist is currently 3-0 on its home court and has yet to drop a set at the McCann Field House after sweeping Bucknell, Providence and Bryant in their own Volley in the Valley tournament (Sept. 5-6).

Carolina on my Mind

Last weekend the Greyhounds faced their toughest test of the season as they took on No. 1-ranked Penn State at the Duke Invitational in Durham, N.C. After a Friday night match against the two-time defending national champions, Loyola faced the Blue Devils and College of Charleston at Cameron Indoor Stadium.

Leading the Way

Nina Camaioni tallied a whopping 70 kills in 14 games on the second weekend of the season in the Battle of Baltimore, including a career-high 23 against Towson. The performance led to her first MAAC Offensive Player of the Week award. Camaioni was named to the Battle of Baltimore's all-tournament team and was the lone Greyhound to be named to the Duke Invitational all-tournament team.

Studly Setter

Kirven, whom head coach Scott Pennewill has referred to as a "stud", is doing more than just setting. The multitalented freshman leads the team with 13 service aces, is second on the team with six blocks, and has also chipped in 89 digs and 19 kills. With 146 assists in the Battle of Baltimore, Kirven was named to her first collegiate all-tournament team as well as named MAAC Rookie of the Week. Kirven has been on a roll since making her Greyhounds debut in Pittsburgh, at the Duquesne/Robert Morris Invitational where she had 117 assists, including 46 against Radford.

Born to Dig

Junior libero Brittany Born comes into the 2009 season with 1,109 career digs. With 153 already in `09, Born is on pace to surpass Megan Maguire's career mark of 1,381 this season. Born's 626 digs as a freshman in 2007, is currently first all-time. Junior outside hitter Nina Camaioni holds the single match record of 36.

The Returning Half

Loyola returned six letterwinners this season, three of them being full-time starters. All together, the Greyhounds return 553 sets played, 664 kills, 847 assists, 1,446 digs and 191 blocks.