No. 20 Wildcats Set for Rematch with No. 17 Florida

No. 20 Wildcats Set for Rematch with No. 17 Florida

LEXINGTON, Ky. – The 20th-ranked Kentucky Wildcats return home on Sunday for a rematch with the No. 17 Florida Gators at 1 p.m. in Memorial Coliseum. Last time the two sides faced off, Kentucky left Gainesville, Fla. with a 3-1 upset following a career day from freshman Brooke Morgan. The match is set for national broadcast on the SEC Network, with Cara Capuano and Jenny Hazelwood calling the match.

Last time out, the Wildcats faced a tough road test, battling all five sets to take down a pesky Auburn team, 3-2. The Wildcats relied on an impressive defensive effort once again to earn the five-set win. The team registered 93 digs and 17 blocks – both season highs – to hold the Tigers to .144 hitting. Sophomores Ashley Dusek and Emily Franklin both contributed heavily to the effort with career nights. Dusek logged a career-best 40 digs during the night, setting a new program record for digs in a match. The record was set 22 years ago when Ann Hall logged 39 against the South Carolina Gamecocks on Oct. 22, 1993. Franklin had a career night with 10 blocks – including two solo stops. The Mesa, Ariz. Native also added nine kills and four digs.

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#20 Kentucky vs. #17 Florida
Sun., Oct. 18 – 1 p.m.
Memorial Coliseum
Lexington, Ky.
Match Notes: UK
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TV: SEC Network
Radio: UKAthletics.com
Live Video via Watch ESPN
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After a rough start to the conference slate, dropping three of their first four, the Gators look to be back on track, winning their last three outings with sweeps of Texas A&M, Auburn and Tennessee. Rhamat Alhassan still looks to be the focal point of UF’s offense, averaging 2.98 kills per set while adding a nation’s best 1.91 blocks per set. Last time the Cats faced Florida they left Gainesville, Fla., with a 3-1 win over the Gators.
For more information on Sunday’s Top-25 match, read below: 

Youth Day:

Sunday marks Youth Day, where all youth in attendance will gain admission for just $1, with children five or younger gaining free admission.  The first 200 kids (18 and under) in attendance can pick up a Kentucky Volleyball Coloring Book from the Gazebo. The book consists of 14 pages- one for each player and a page with the mascots.

Gameday Parking:

We are pleased to offer new parking opportunities this season. In addition to the E lots around the Craft Center and Coal Lodge, fans have the option of parking in the Linden Walk E lots which are across Rose Street from the Singletary Center for the Arts, the E/CS-7 lots near the College of Education off of S. Upper Street, and the Rose Street Garage (PS-2) located on Rose Street, south of the Coliseum with an entrance on Hilltop Avenue near W.T. Young Library. These lots are available for all matches starting three hours before first serve. For our marquee match-ups, including contests with Michigan State, Louisville, Mississippi State, Florida, and Texas A&M, the Limestone Street Garage (PS-5) will also be available. Fans are reminded to never park in lots or spaces designated R for residential and that the Student Center lot is no longer an option due to construction. Parking is limited and fans are encouraged to arrive early,


Bergren and Morgan were named Southeastern Conference Players of the Week on Oct. 12 for the previous week’s play. Bergren was the league’s top performing player and setter, while Morgan hauled in Freshman of the Week accolades. 
Bergren helped guide the Kentucky offense with 32 assists on 42 of the team’s kills. She registered her second double-double of the season with the 32 assists and 11 digs. Bergren found a way to get everyone involved in the offense, with five different players recording five or more kills. Bergren contributed five kills as well. She also assisted at the net with three of UK’s eight blocks.  With the 11 digs, she led the team for the most in the match. 
Morgan had nine kills and four blocks in the win over the Razorbacks. She averaged 3.00 kills per frame – well above her season average of 1.94. She utilized a .353 attacking clip in the win, and also added 1.33 blocks per set en route to her second career Freshman of the Week honor.


The Wildcats have found a way to win this season while playing on a bigger stage, as the team is undefeated so far while on nationally televised outings. The Wildcats’ second meeting with Florida will mark the fifth time Kentucky will appear on a national broadcast this season. UK had 3-0 wins over South Carolina, Mississippi State and Arkansas earlier this season, as well as a 3-1 road upset over then-No. 5 Florida. UK is slated for nine regular-season national television broadcasts, each airing on the SEC Network.


The Wildcats, currently the only undefeated team in the Southeastern Conference at 6-0 in SEC play, are living up to the old adage “Defense wins championships.” The Wildcats have held every in-conference opponent below its average hitting percentage this season. Over the season, UK has only allowed three opponents (Little Rock, Southern California and Wichita State) to hit better than their average. 


Following another solid week of play, Brown finds herself among the national leaders in blocks per set. The Waterloo, Iowa, native is averaging 1.49 blocks per set, ranking No. 14 in the nation. Brown also ranks in the top 25 in total blocks, coming in at No. 15 with 91 during the 2015 campaign. Brown ranks second the SEC in total blocks and third in the conference in blocks per set, with Florida’s Rhamat Alhassan leading the conference, and nation, in both categories. 


Sophomore libero Ashley Dusek leads the Southeastern Conference with a staggering 4.72 digs per set. Dusek ranks 56th in the nation in digs per set, with her 288 total digs good for third in the SEC.


Following the Oct. 11 weekend, the Kentucky Wildcats are ranked yet again in the Oct. 12 AVCA poll, coming in at 20. With the ranking, UK extends its ranking streak to 40 consecutive weeks, dating back to Aug. 18, 2012. The 10-week streak is the longest ranked streak under head coach Craig Skinner and the longest in program history.
Kentucky’s Memorial Coliseum will play host to the NCAA Regionals Dec. 11-12. UK is one of four sites selected for the Sweet 16 and Elite Eight matchups with one team advancing to the Final Four in Omaha, Neb., from the Lexington Region. This marks the third time in five seasons Memorial Coliseum will host this premier volleyball event.
For the latest on the Kentucky volleyball team, follow them on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram, and on the web at UKathletics.com

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