Volleyball to open 3-3 at home with tourney

After going 1-2 last weekend in College Station, Wichita State returns to defend their home court against five non-conference opponents this weekend at the Shocker Invitational.

The Shockers face off at 12:30 p.m. Thursday at Charles Koch Arena against South Dakota State. The Jackrabbits are 1-7 this season, coached by Nicole Cirillo and led by hitters Ashley Beaner and Nazya Thies.

Next the Shockers take on Northern Illinois at 7:30 p.m. Thursday. The Huskies average 11.6 kills per game and are led offensively by outside hitter Mary Grace Kelly.

At 8 p.m. Friday, WSU takes on Kentucky. The Bulldogs have a record of 4-3. Threats include libero Ashley Dusek and sophomore middle blocker Kaz Brown.

Their next opponent is Texas State at 1 p.m. Saturday. The Bobcats are 3-4 with a recent team record against Prairie View A&M, achieving a hitting percentage of .554.

The Shockers will end the tournament against 4-1 Illinois at 8 p.m. Saturday. Coached by Kevin Hambly, the Fighting Illini are led in kills by senior Jocelyn Birks.

Players to watch this week for the Shockers include Emily Hiebert, setter, fresh off her Texas A&M All-Tournament Team award, kill leader Abbie Lehman and outside hitter Jody Larson. Wichita State averages 13 kills per set and is ranked eighth in the MVC.