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    Tigers Return Home Friday Night to Face Mississippi State

    Oct. 4, 2012

    
    

    @AUVolleyball on Twitter | Auburn Volleyball on Facebook

    Auburn (12-4, 3-4) vs. Mississippi State (4-10, 0-5) | Friday, Oct. 5, 6:30 p.m. CT
    Student Activities Center | Auburn, Ala.
    GameTracker | Live Video | Auburn Notes

    AUBURN, Ala. - The Auburn volleyball team returns to the friendly confines of the Student Activities Center on Friday night for their second meeting of the year against SEC Western Division foe Mississippi State. The match is set for a 6:30 p.m. start, and admission is free.

    Auburn (12-4, 3-3 SEC) will look to improve to 6-0 at home this year and sweep the season series from the Bulldogs (4-10, 0-5). The Tigers won the season's earlier meeting in Starkville, 3-0, on Sept. 14. In the all-time series, Auburn is 32-20 against Mississippi State and has won six of the last eight meetings. In home matches, Auburn is 18-6 all-time against MSU and has won seven of the last nine at the Student Act.

    Friday will be the Tailgate Taste Testing Competition. Fans - especially those tailgating on campus in preparation for Saturday's football game with Arkansas - are encouraged to bring their best tailgate dishes to the match, and the winning fans will receive an HDTV for their tailgate.

    Fans unable to attend can watch the match via live streaming video and also follow live stats at AuburnTigers.com. Fans can also follow @AUVolleyball on Twitter for updates throughout the match.

    The Tigers enter the weekend looking to bounce back from a pair of road losses last week in conference play. Auburn dropped a 3-0 decision at Arkansas last Friday night, then fell in four sets at Kentucky on Sunday. Despite that, Auburn sits third in the SEC Western Division and tied for sixth overall in the conference with a .500 mark in league matches.

    FIRST NCAA RPI RELEASED; TIGERS 39TH
    Auburn is 39th in the initial RPI of the season, released by the NCAA on Monday. The Tigers are one of seven SEC teams in the top 50 nationwide, joining Arkansas (16), Kentucky (17), Texas A&M (22), Florida (24), Tennessee (27) and Missouri (49). All four of Auburn's losses this season have come to teams ranked 54th or better.

    ABOUT THE TIGERS
    Senior Sarah Bullock continues to lead the Auburn offense as she enters the week ranked 10th in the SEC with 3.38 kills/set, and she moved up to 10th all-time in career kills last weekend as she now has 1,080 for her career. That number puts her third among active SEC players. Junior Katherine Culwell comes in 19th in the latest SEC rankings, averaging 2.93 kills/set.

    Camila Jersonsky continues to be one of the top hitters in the league with a .361 percentage, ranking fifth in the SEC, and Chloe Rowand is not far behind at .328, ninth-best in the league.

    Defensively, junior libero Sarah Wroblicky ranks third in the league with 4.75 digs/set, helping the Tigers to the third-best mark in the SEC as a team (16.95 digs/set).

    SCOUTING THE BULLDOGS
    Mississippi State enters the weekend at 4-10 overall, 0-5 in SEC play, having dropped six straight matches. The Bulldogs are 1-2 on opponents' home floors this year.

    But the Bulldogs are one of the nation's top defensive teams. Freshman Roxanne McVey was last week's SEC Freshman of the Week after setting a conference record with 50 digs in a five-set loss to LSU, becoming the 20th player in NCAA history to record 50 or more digs in a single match. She averages 6.36 digs/set, best in the SEC and second-best in the NCAA, and MSU leads the SEC with 17.72 digs/set.

    Offensively, the Bulldogs are led by Sarah Nielsen, who ranks 17th in the SEC with a .283 hitting percentage, and Taylor Scott, who averages 3.09 kills/set to rank 13th in the league.

    LAST TIME: AUBURN 3, MISSISSIPPI STATE 0 (9/14/12)
    Senior Sarah Bullock had 10 kills and matched a career-high with 21 digs, leading the Auburn volleyball team to a 3-0 win (25-20, 25-16, 25-19) over Mississippi State at the Newell-Grissom Building. Auburn got a measure of revenge over MSU (4-6, 0-1 SEC) after the Bulldogs won both meetings between the teams a year ago.

    Bullock picked up her third double-double of the season and inched closer to the career 1,000-dig plateau. It was Bullock's third match with 20+ digs in her career; her previous match with 21 digs came in her freshman year at Arkansas.

    Junior Camila Jersonsky had nine kills - seven in the first set alone - and six blocks, and junior Sarah Wroblicky matched Bullock for the team-high in digs with 21. Katherine Culwell added eight kills, seven digs and five blocks, and Kathia Rud had five kills and a pair of blocks. Freshman Ciara Richards led Auburn with 19 assists, and Chelsea Wintzinger had 17 assists and seven digs.

    Auburn hit an even .200 as a team and held Mississippi State to .089, the second team Auburn has held below the .100 mark this season. The Tigers had 41 kills to MSU's 32 and out-dug the SEC's leader in digs 64-61. Auburn also controlled the play at the net, recording 11 team blocks to MSU's five.

    A LOOK AHEAD
    Auburn will hit the road once again next weekend to face a pair of SEC Eastern Division foes. The Tigers will face Georgia in Athens at 6 p.m. CT Friday before heading to Gainesville to take on Florida at 12:30 p.m. CT Sunday. The match at Florida will be televised by Sun Sports.