November 15, 2013

Islanders Host Bearkats Saturday on Senior Day

      TEXAS A&M - CORPUS CHRISTI (18-11, 12-5 SLC) VS. SAM HOUSTON STATE (17-9, 14-3 SLC)  

                Saturday, Nov. 16 • 12 p.m. • Dugan Wellness Center • Corpus Christi, Texas  

                VIDEO | LIVE STATS  Twitter: @IslandersVB


CORPUS CHRISTI – The Texas A&M - Corpus Christi volleyball team will host its final regular-season home match Saturday, Nov. 16 when it hosts Sam Houston State on Senior Day. The Islanders will play tribute to seniors Logen Bourque, Renee Ramirez and Sarah Sanchez prior to the match at 12 p.m. in the Dugan Wellness Center.

Early this season, the Islanders dropped a 3-0 loss to the Bearkats but then went on to win seven straight. The Islanders hold an 18-11 overall record and a school-best 12-5 record in the Southland Conference. The team currently sits in fifth place in the conference standings and will face the Bearkats who are tied for second with Northwestern State at 14-3. The top eight teams will advance to the conference tournament on Nov. 22-24 at the Dugan Wellness Center.

On Wednesday, Brianna Brink posted 13 kills and Bourque tallied her 11th double-double of the season to help the Islanders sweep Lamar 3-0. Brink hit a solid .591 in the match while Bourque recorded 35 assists and 11 digs to propel the Islanders' offense. Shayla Maldonado powered the defense with 17 digs of the Islanders' 53 digs.

Throughout her four years, Bourque has been a consistent leader for the Islanders' offense and as on Monday, she was currently ranked 19th in the nation in assists and second in the conference (11.30 assists per set). She is the Islanders' career assist leader with 4,381 assists and has tallied 50 or more assists in seven matches this season. The Houston native has passed out 1,175 assists this season, which ranks second in Islanders history for a single season. She also recently garnered sole possession of second place all-time in career digs with 1,064 and is currently ranked fourth with 74 career service aces.

As of Monday, Bourque and the Islanders were ranked 30th in the nation in digs and 35th in the nation in assists, which are both good for second place in the conference. Texas A&M - Corpus Christi sits in third place in the conference with 13.70 kills per set. Ivy Baresh leads the Islanders with 3.44 kills per set, which is good for sixth place in the conference. The sophomore ranks 11th in digs with 3.66 per set and 13th in service aces. Ashley Phelps is right behind Baresh on the team with 3.22 kills per set while Brink is averaging 3.08 kills per set (10th SLC). 

Defensively, Hailey King, Baresh and Maldonado power the team. King is averaging 3.58 digs per set (13th SLC) with 340 digs on the year and Maldonado is averaging 4.38 digs per set in conference play, which ranks sixth in conference matches only.

Sam Houston State enters Saturday's match with a 17-9 record including a 14-3 record in conference play. The Bearkats are coming off a 3-0 sweep over Houston Baptist on Thursday in Houston. Sam Houston State is on a three-match winning streak and is led by 2012 Southland Conference Player of the Year Deveney Wells-Gibson with 4.62 kills per set. The junior leads the conference in kills. Tayler Gray runs the offense with 10.83 assists per set and Haley Neisler leads the team defensively with 1.17 blocks per set. Also helping the Bearkats defensively is Breanna Homer with 4.08 digs per set.

Saturday's match will mark the 26th meeting between the two schools in program history. Sam Houston State holds the 19-6 series advantage. In the first meeting, the Islanders suffered a 3-0 loss (25-16, 25-23, 25-20) to the Bearkats in Huntsville. Phelps recorded 12 kills while Baresh chipped in eight kills and a match-high 19 digs. Bourque tallied 32 assists and eight digs while King added 17 digs.

Click here for live stats and video of the match and for in-match updates check out Islanders Volleyball on Twitter (@IslandersVB).

Following Saturday's match, the Islanders will host the Southland Conference Tournament on Nov. 22-24 in the Dugan Wellness Center.

For all the latest on Islanders Volleyball, like the team on Facebook (IslandersVolleyball) and follow them on Twitter and Instagram (@IslandersVB).

Get to know the Islanders seniors:

Renee Ramirez:

Do you have any in-match superstitions?

"I have to touch the corner of the court when we go up to shake the other teams hands."

Your teammates would be shocked to know what about you?

"When I'm sick I like to hum to myself till I fall asleep."

Most famous number in your cell phone or most famous follower?

"Ivy Baresh. She has the most followers on twitter and instagram so she's basically famous."

What is your favorite volleyball moment you have had at Texas A&M – Corpus Christi?

"It's hard to pick a certain moment but I would have to say just being a part of the first recruiting class and just learning how to break down walls and obstacles with my team, especially Logen and Sarah. It's the best feeling when what you work on pays off on the court and you just enjoy everyone's success."

Tip to my fellow islanders?

"As corny as it sounds it goes by faster than you think. So challenge yourself and make the most of every opportunity."

 
Logen Bourque:

Do you have any in-match superstitions?

"I have to high five teammates in a certain order or in the same way before each play."

Your teammates would be shocked to know what about you?

"How nervous/anxious I get before each match. No matter how big of a game it is, I usually feel sick before each match. That all goes away the second the first serve happens."

Most famous number in your cell phone or most famous follower:

"@IslanderVBTonyG."

What are two things you must have on the road with you?

"Sarah and Renee."

Tip to my fellow Islanders:

"This will sound so cliché, but cherish every moment, the good and the bad. You will never have the relationships and bonds that you have with your teammates anywhere else."

 
Sarah Sanchez:

Do you have any in-match superstitions?

"High fives from everyone when we line up, I whistle the National Anthem and my shoes have to be mega-tied."

Most famous number in your cell phone or most famous follower?

"Awolnation and Whataburger."

What is your favorite volleyball moment you have had at Texas A&M - Corpus Christi?

"I honestly can't say that I have one favorite moment. There have been games that I have played well in, but it has been fighting through the tough times with these girls and this team that stands out to me. Experiencing these past years with Logen and Renee is my favorite moment. I couldn't have asked for anything better."

Favorite Coach Graystone saying:

"It's not hard, it's just extreme."

Tip to my fellow Islanders?

"Keep fighting and give it your all. Live in every moment. I promise it's worth it."