DENTON (8/28/04) -- The North Texas volleyball team didn’t have much trouble with 10 of the program’s former letterwinners on Saturday, defeating the alumni 4-0 (30-22, 30-16, 30-19, 30-24) in a scrimmage setting just four days before its season opener at Tulsa on Sept. 1.
The Mean Green got a look at 13 players in the outing, including four that posted double-figure kills. Freshman outside hitter Katy Prokof led the way for North Texas, recording the squad’s only double-double with 11 kills and a team-high 11 digs. Junior Brittney Gregory tallied a team-best 12 kills, while senior Anne Pope and sophomore Taylor Lawrence each finished with 11.
Whlie NT ran two setters, sophomore Heidi Johnson started the match and saw the majority of playing time in three of the four games. Freshman Ashley Bass performed well when given the opportunity, recording 12 assists and three digs. Johnson dished out a team-high 33 assists and also collected a team-best five service aces.
The Mean Green hit at least .300 in two of the four games and finished with a .230 hitting percentage, while holding the Alumni team to a .096 hitting average.
Tanya Samples (1999-02), NT’s third all-time leading blocker, paced the alumni attack with a team-high 11 kills and seven digs. Some of the best players in the program’s history came back to participate in the match, including NT’s all-time kills and digs leader in Corina Marginas (2000-03) and its all-time assists leader in Kristin Sheppard (2001-03). Also returning to play in the match were Jessica Shockley (2000-02), Nirak Dickerson (1996-99), Daniella Grimaldo (1997-2000), Stephanie Connors (2000-02), Laura Gomez (1995-99), Michelle Jacobs (1998-99) and Abby Rutman (2002).
The Mean Green is coming off a 22-14 season, its first 20-win campaign since 1995, and has won 59 matches under head Coach Cassie Headerick for its most wins over a four-year span since winning 61 from 1980-84. North Texas returns eight letterwinners from last year’s team and has six newcomers on its 2004 roster.
Including Tulsa, the Mean Green will play four opponents in its first week of competition. NT also faces Oral Roberts, Kansas and Loyola-Chicago next week.