PREVIEW: @UTTyler_vall to host ETBU on Tuesday
Graphic by: Jeff Williford
Graphic by: Jeff Williford

Monday, September 18, 2017
by Wes Bloomquist ||

TYLER – The UT Tyler volleyball team will host East Texas Baptist at 7 p.m. on Tuesday in an American Southwest Conference match at the Herrington Patriot Center after opening conference play with three matches on the road last week.

The Patriots (9-2, 2-1 ASC) are 3-1 at home this season and will be looking to snap an 11-match losing streak to the Tigers (5-8, 1-0 ASC) who took both meetings last season in four sets. UT Tyler is coming off road sweeps over LeTourneau and Louisiana College before falling in five at Belhaven last Saturday to complete the ASC-opening trip. ETBU lost four straight matches over the weekend at the Trinity University Classic against Southwestern, Pomona-Pitzer, Trinity and Texas Lutheran after earning a five-set win over No. 13 UT Dallas last Tuesday to open ASC play.

UT Tyler freshman Brianna Bellehumeur and junior transfer Blair Dressendorfer have led the Patriot attack this season with Bellehumeur at 96 kills and Dressendorfer at 93 kills coming into the first match against the Tigers. Bellehumeur is also second on the team with 114 digs (2.85 per set) for the Patriots and has nine blocks. Brieanne Brown, the team’s lone senior, has added 79 kills and has a .227 attacking percentage along with providing 15 blocks. A Belton native, Brown has recorded 754 career kills which is currently fifth all-time in UTT history.

Samantha Lee is leading the Patriots with 33 blocks (0.82 per set) and has also contributed 58 kills. Lee tops the team with a .359 attacking percentage this season and is currently fourth all-time with 180 blocks in her career. Loren Guerra is second on the team with 25 blocks and has 56 kills, while Haley Nemitz has 53 kills and 21 blocks for the Patriots.

UT Tyler junior Reighanna Guzman is leading the team with 226 assists and has 93 digs and Madison Denning has 141 assists and 52 digs from the setter position. Guzman and Denning have helped Patriot hitters to a .223 attacking percentage this season. At libero, Makenna Bartlett is leading the team with 160 digs (4.00 per set) to begin her sophomore season. Bartlett also has 11 aces and 36 assists for the Patriots, while junior Emily Robison has 63 digs as a defensive specialist. UT Tyler has a 623-515 dig advantage this season over its opponents with a 15.57 dig-per-set average.

The Patriots will return to action this weekend with three matches at the ASC Crossover which will be played in Longview. UTT opens the event with a 10 a.m. match against Howard Payne on Friday before taking on Hardin-Simmons (12:30 p.m.) and Concordia (5:30 p.m.) on Saturday at the Solheim Arena. The Patriots opened their season with a five-set victory over HSU in a non-conference match in Belton. The team is currently 6-1 away from home this season.