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Sep 5, 2013

Live Video (Clemson match only) | Tournament Central | On Twitter: @GamecockVolley | Tournament NotesGet Acrobat Reader

September 5, 2013

COLUMBIA, S.C. — The South Carolina volleyball team hits the road for the first time this season as it travels to Clemson, S.C., this weekend for the Big Orange Bash hosted by Clemson.

The Gamecocks will face their in-state rival Tigers on Friday at 7 p.m. at Jervey Gym and will play Furman (12 p.m.) and Winthrop (4 p.m.) on Saturday.

South Carolina Team Notes
• South Carolina has won its first three matches three straight years.
• South Carolina has not lost a set this season.
• The Gamecocks have recorded more kills, more assists, more digs and more blocks than their opponents in all three matches.
• Opponents are hitting just .056 against South Carolina.
• The Gamecocks are hitting .326 on the season.
• Five Gamecocks are hitting above .300 and averaging 1.25 kills or more per set.

Gamecocks in the SEC Stats
• South Carolina ranks third in the conference with a hitting percentage of .326.
• The Gamecoks lead the league in opponent hitting percentage (.056).
• South Carolina ranks fifth in service aces, averaging 1.56 per set.
• Sophomore Darian Dozier leads the league in blocks per set (1.78)
• Senior outside hitter Juliette Thévenin ranks fifth in kills with an average of 4.33 per set and sixth in points per set (4.61)
• Sophomore setter Kellie McNeil is eighth in assists per set (8.75).
• Junior libero Michaela Christiaansen ranks 11th in digs, averaging 3.33 per set.

Accumulating Hardware
• Senior Juliette Thévenin was named the Gamecock Invitational MVP.
• Sophomore Kellie McNeil was named to the Gamecock Invitational All-Tournament Team.

All-Time Records
• South Carolina holds a 727-555 (.567) record.
• The Gamecocks are 192-218 (.468) in SEC play.
• In matches played at the Volleyball Competition Facility, South Carolina is 151-76 (.665).

Leaving Her Mark
• Senior outside hitter Juliette Thévenin returns for one last season in Garnet and Black.
• She is a preseason All-SEC selection after ranking second in SEC play in both kills per set (4.40) and points per set (4.81) last season.
• The Mont-sur-Marchinne, Belgium, native earned second-team All-SEC honors in 2012, becoming the first Gamecock to earn All-SEC honors since 2008 (Belita Salters).
• Thévenin is in the top 10 in four career categories in the Gamecock record book, ranking second in kills per set (3.90), fourth in points per set (4.31), seventh kills (1,163) and sixth attacks (2,992).

Instant Impact
• South Carolina added a pair of transfers to the roster in the offseason in sophomore setter Kellie McNeil (Minnesota) and junior libero Michaela Christiaansen (Pepperdine) and both have made an immediate impact.
• McNeil, who is one of three team captains, averaged 8.75 assists, 1.25 kills and 1.50 digs per set in the Gamecock Invitational, earning All-Tournament honors.
• Christiaansen turned in a team-best average of 3.33 digs per set and recorded five service aces.

Scouting Clemson
• Clemson enters the weekend with a 1-2 record.
• The Tigers went 21-10 in 2012.
• Heading into the season, Clemson was picked to finish eighth in the ACC.
• Senior Mo Simmons, a preseason All-ACC selection, is the team’s leading returner in kills after averaging 3.17 kills per set a year ago.
• Simmons was the only player in the ACC to average three or more kills and digs per set.
• Simmons opened 2013 averaging 3.60 kills and 2.70 digs per set in three matches.
• Senior setter Hannah Brenner averaged 10.04 assists per set in 2012 and ranks sixth in Tiger history with 2,878 assists.
• Junior Karis Watson enters the weekend averaging 2.70 kills per set while hitting .311

Series History vs. Clemson
• South Carolina is 36-22 all-time against the Tigers.
• The Gamecocks are 6-4 in their last 10 matches vs. Clemson.
• In last year’s meeting, South Carolina swept the Tigers in Columbia.
• South Carolina is 11-10 vs. the Tigers since joining the SEC in 1991.
• The Gamecocks are 12-9 all-time in matches at Clemson.
• South Carolina has won the last two matches at Clemson, defeating the Tigers in five sets in both 2006 and 2009.

Scouting Furman
• Furman holds a 0-4 record heading into the Big Orange Bash.
• In 2012, Furman went 24-10 and lost in the final of the SoCon tournament to College of Charleston.
• The Paladins were picked to finish third in the Southern Conference this season.
• Furman returns three starters and its libero and eight letterwinners.
• Senior Christina Dorismond and junior Jo Wilks received preseason All-Southern Conference honors.
• Dorismond averaged 2.76 kills per set last season.
• Wilks ranked fourth in the NCAA in assists per set (12.23) last season and was named SoCon Freshman of the Year.
• Through four matches this season, Dorismond is averaging 2.17 kills per set and Wilks is averaging 8.50 assists per set.

Series History vs. Furman
• The Gamecocks are 4-0 all-time vs. the Paladins.
• South Carolina one the last meeting in three sets in Columbia on Sept. 10, 2010.

Scouting Winthrop
• Winthrop enters the tournament with a 4-0 record.
• The Eagles won the Winthrop Classic title to open the season.
• In 2012, Winthrop went 14-16 and finished fifth in the Big South.
• Bruce Atkinson is in his first year as Winthrop’s head coach.
• Sophomore middle blocker Rachel Lenz is the only returner from 2012. She finished second on the squad in kills (276) last season, earning Big South All-Freshman Team honors.
• Lenz was named Winthrop Classic MVP after producing 43 kills with a .461 hitting percentage.
• Junior setter Jessie Vicic is averaging 11.71 assists per set.
• As a team, Winthrop is outhitting opponents .270 to .070.

Series History vs. Winthrop
• Saturday will be the 32nd meeting with the Eagles.
• The Gamecocks hold an 18-13 lead in the series.
• South Carolina has won the last two meetings, including a sweep in Columbia last season on Sept. 8, 2012.

South Carolina Overview
• South Carolina enters its third season with head coach Scott Swanson.
• Last year’s team went 18-14, the program’s second winning season in the last decade and the most wins since 2008 (21).
• The Gamecocks return five letterwinners from a year ago, including two starters (senior Juliette Thévenin, sophomore Darian Dozier).
• With the departure of 11 letterwinners, South Carolina lost 97 percent of its production from last season in assists (1,346), 78.1 percent in digs (1,252) and 58.9 percent in kills (876).
• The 2012 Gamecocks improved their offensive efficiency for the second straight year, raising their hitting percentage 29 points to .255, which ranked third in the SEC.
• South Carolina returns its leader in kills (Juliette Thévenin, 453) and its second-leading blocker (Darian Dozier, 67).