Charlotte volleyball continues its four-match home stand this weekend, starting with the tenth-annual Dig Pink match Friday night against Rhode Island in Halton Arena. The 49ers will finish the home stand Sunday afternoon against Fordham at 1 p.m.
Charlotte is 6-11 on the season, looking for its first Atlantic 10 Conference win after an 0-5 start. The 49ers have started with the top five teams by record in conference play and will now play the bottom half of the teams in the standings over these next two weeks.
The first 1,000 fans through the gates (which open at 6 p.m. Friday night) will receive a Dig Pink t-shirt. Fans are encouraged to help contribute to beat last year's total of over $10,000, putting Charlotte second in the nation by college and universities towards the Dig Pink cause. Thursday's Jail and Bail raised over $2,000 towards finding a cure for breast cancer. Last year's Dig Pink match set a school record for single match attendance, at 1,803 fans. Charlotte defeated Temple 3-2 on that night.
On the court, Charlotte is led offensively by junior Bianca Rouse (Columbia, S.C. / Keenan HS), who is eighth in the A-10 with 3.23 kills per set (213 total). The 49ers are fifth in the league with 2.08 blocks per set this season, with a pair of Niners in the individual rankings. Freshman Savannah Gaster (Johnsonville, N.C. / Johnsonville HS) is fifth in the league, with 0.97 blocks per set (62 total) and sophomore Amanda Videmsek checks in this week tenth in the league with 0.91 blocks per set (41 total). She missed six matches with an injury earlier this season, but she has been in the lineup for each of the last five conference matches. She is eighth in conference matches only, averaging 1.11 blocks per set (21 total blocks).
Rhode Island's Kayla Wilson has the third-highest kills-per-set average (3.93, 295 total) in the A-10 to this point in the season. The 10-9 Rams enter the weekend with a pair of league wins (Fordham and Duquesne) and are looking to get to .500 in conference with a win. These Rams are the league's top serving squad, scoring on 1.57 aces per set this season.
The Fordham Rams will visit George Washington Friday night before the trip to Charlotte on Sunday. Fordham won its first two conference matches (at Temple and La Salle), but have lost four in a row entering this weekend. Fordham is 5-15 on the season, 2-3 in league play. Fordham's only 200-plus kills performer this season is Brittany Daulton, who is averaging 2.65 kills per set so far. These Rams do not have a player in the Top 10 in the league in an offensive category, but are second in the league in blocking. Randi Ewing and Krissy Buongiorno are second and third in the league, respectively, averaging 1.12 blocks per set this season (81 in 72 sets and 82 in 73 sets in 2011.)