Baltimore -- The UMBC Volleyball team (10-4, 1-1) looks to climb the America East standings as it hosts Albany and Binghamton this weekend at The RAC. The 5 p.m. match with Albany (9-6, 3-0) on Friday will be the team's Homecoming match and kicks-off the Retriever Rally. Sunday's 1 p.m. match with Binghamton (8-8, 2-1) will be a Power in Pink match and be a part the second annual AE Food Frenzy. Fans are asked to bring canned goods on Sunday or donate at YouGiveGoods.com/AEFALLFoodFrenzy
Sophomore setter Claudia Lopez (Guaynabo, Puerto Rico/Academia Maria Reina) is second in the conference with 10.28 assists per set. Junior Abbie Mirabella (Hockessin, Del./St.Mark's) leads the America East with 4.19 kills per set (197 total), while senior Zoya Trendafilova (Sofia, Bulgaria/Elisaveta Bagryana) sits in eighth with an average of 2.81 (121 total). The Retrievers have the top defense in the league, holding opponents to a .178 hitting percentage(New Hampshire is second with .191).
Scouting the Great Danes: UAlbany will be playing in its first match since a 3-1 home win against Hartford on October 2. Thanks to her performance in that match, Nicole Otero earned America East Defensive specialist of the week for the third time in 2016. Otero is averaging 5.5 digs per set for a total of 272 overall. Laini Leindecker paces the Great Dane offense, averaging 3.14 kills per set.
The Retrievers and Great Danes will meet for the 33rd time in the all-time series. Albany holds a 25-7 all-time lead after taking both matches in 2015. The Great Danes won a five-set thriller at The RAC before sweeping UMBC in upstate New York a month later.
Scouting the Bearcats: Binghamton travels to Baltimore after playing at Stony Brook on Friday October 7. The Bearcats will enter that matchup with an 8-8 record, including a 2-1 mark in the America East. Lauren Kornmann (149 kills) and Erin Shultz (124) are the offensive catalysts for BU. Kornmann is averaging 2.87 kills per set on a .169 hitting percentage, both team bests. Bailey Walker is averaging 4.58 digs per set for a total of 261 overall.
The Retrievers and Bearcats will meet for the 32nd time in the all-time series. Binghamton holds a 19-12 all-time lead. The teams split their meetings in 2015, with each side winning in four sets on their home court.