ATHENS, Ohio -Ohio Volleyball closes out its 2012 home schedule on Friday night, hosting the Notre Dame Fighting Irish at 7 p.m. The match will mark the first time that the teams have met since the 2009 postseason, a thrilling affair in which the Bobcats ousted the Fighting Irish from the first round of the NCAA Tournament in five sets.
Friday's match will serve as Fan Appreciation Day at The Convocation Center.
Ohio (20-10, 14-2 Mid-American Conference) is coming off a 3-2 loss to Northern Illinois in the semifinal round of the 2012 MAC Tournament. The Bobcats swept Ball State in the quarterfinal round before falling to the Huskies on Nov. 17.
All-Tournament Team Abby Gilleland (Bull Valley, Ill.) was named to the All-Tournament Team at the 2012 MAC Volleyball Tournament last weekend. The freshman registered 35 assists and six digs in the win over Ball State, following this up with 53 assists and 14 digs against Northern Illinois.
Conference Player of the Year On Nov. 15, Kelly Lamberti was recognized by the Mid-American Conference for her sensational sophomore season. The native of Cary, Ill., was named the MAC's 2012 Volleyballl Player of the Year. Lamberti leads the team in kills (423), total attacks (1,202), and service aces (29), while ranking fourth in blocks (53) and second in digs (362).
On the same day, Ohio garnered seven additional All-League selections. Lamberti, Meredith Ashy (Louisville, Ky.), and Chelsea Bilger (Fishers, Ind.) were named to the league's First Team; Faith Robins (Winston-Salem, N.C.) and Serena Warner (Houston, Texas) earned Second Team honors, and Ashy and Abby Gilleland (Bull Valley, Ill.) were named to the All-Freshman Team.
Previewing the Fighting Irish Notre Dame enters Friday's match the owner of a 20-8 record which includes a 13-2 mark in Big East play. The Fighting Irish's time at the 2012 Big East Tournament came to an end on Nov. 16, as the team lost to the No. 6 seed USF Bulls in four sets.
Toni Alugbue leads the way offensively for the Irish, having earned 372 kills in 105 sets. Not far behind her is Jeni Houser, who has hit 347 kills in 106 sets. Notre Dame is a strong blocking team, averaging 2.74 blocks per set compared to a mark of 2.25 by its opponents. Andie Olsen (89 blocks) and Houser (85) lead the team in this category.