@UTTyler_vball to open season in Belton
UT Tyler (1-0)
at
Hardin-Simmons (0-1)
9/1/2017 | Belton, TX | Attendance: 178
1st2nd3rd4th5th
UT Tyler2520251915
Hardin-Simmons2225192511
Stats at a GlanceUTTHSU
Hitting Pct..239.272
Kills5452
Errors2015
Total Attacks142136
Assists5449
Aces68
Digs6467
Blocks13.019.5
Statistical LeadersUTTHSU
KillsHaley Nemitz - 12
Brianna Bellehumeur - 12
Meagan Bauer - 14
AssistsReighanna Guzman - 30
Ashley Pierce - 24
AcesReighanna Guzman - 2
Makenna Bartlett - 2
Leecia DePaula - 4
DigsBrianna Bellehumeur - 21
Leecia DePaula - 23
BlocksSamantha Lee - 10
Rebekah Hayes - 9

Thursday, August 31, 2017
by Wes Bloomquist || wbloomquist@uttyler.edu

TYLER – The UT Tyler volleyball team will open its 2017 season this weekend with four matches at the Mary Hardin-Baylor Tournament in Belton. The Patriots play at noon against Hardin-Simmons and then again at 4:30 p.m. against UMass-Boston on Friday for their first two contests before playing two more on Saturday with a 10 a.m. match against Regis College and then completing the weekend with a 12:30 p.m. match against Susquehanna College.

UT Tyler is coming off a 18-9 overall record in 2016 and is picked to finish second in the American Southwest Conference. The team is led by Lyndsay Mashe who is in her second season with the Patriots and enters 2017 with 212 wins in her career.

UT Tyler returns 10 players from a team which was the second seed out of the ASC East Division in the conference tournament and will return from Belton to host the Dakotas Patriot Classic next weekend. The Patriots, who started last season with a 6-0 record, will host their home tournament on Sept. 8-9 with eight universities playing 16 matches over the course of two days at the Herrington Patriot Center.

The Patriots were 0-2 against the Cowgirls last season with a five-set loss at the ASC Crossover in mid-September and then dropping a 3-1 decision (25-20, 22-25, 21-25, 18-25) at the conference tournament. This will be the first time UT Tyler has opened a season against a conference opponent, but the match will not count towards the ASC standings. The two teams will meet again on Saturday, Sept. 23 at the ASC Crossover in Longview. UT Tyler has never played UMass-Boston, Regis or Susquehanna in program history.

Brieanne Brown is the only senior on the team and enters 2017 with 675 career kills, 263 digs and 91 blocks as a right-side hitter for the Patriots. A left-hander from Belton, Brown is a two-time ASC All-Academic selection and earned All-ASC East Division second-team as a sophomore. She is coming off a junior season where she had 168 kills and a .252 hitting percentage. Her 675 kills are the seventh most in UT Tyler history.

Samantha Lee is a junior middle blocker from Georgetown who led the Patriots with 70 blocks and had 124 kills last season. She enters her third season in Tyler with 147 career blocks which ranks eighth all-time in the program’s record book and also has 299 career kills and a .322 hitting percentage.

Along with Brown and Lee, UT Tyler also returns Emily Robison, Kaitlyn Budisalovich, Reighanna Guzman, Kayla McCoy, Makenna Bartlett, Kyana Alvarez, Haley Nemitz, and Loren Guerra while welcoming Blair Dressendorfer who is a junior transfer who played at Southwestern Oklahoma State. The incoming freshmen include: Olivia Burnett, Kennedy Thorne, Haley Griffin, Hannah Sasser, Alison Ficarro, Madison Denning, Morgan Wright, Brianna Bellehumeur, Savannah Sherman, Taylyn Cantu, Natalie Batton and Alex Contreras.  

“I feel like the key for us to having a successful season is just getting better every day,” Mashe said. “We will have some young players playing key roles, so just getting them adjusted to the collegiate game will be important. Our schedule is tough this year, so we will have to be ready to go each time we step on the floor. I feel really good about our team and think they have the potential to have a special season.”