GREEN BAY, Wis. (GreenBayPhoenix.com) – After a strong showing last weekend at the season-opening NIU Invitational, the Green Bay volleyball team (1-2) heads south this week for the Auburn Active Ankle Challenge in Auburn, Ala., where it will play a trio of matches at the Student Activities Center.
The Phoenix opens the tournament with two contests on Thursday, first taking on Troy (2-2) at 12 p.m., and then facing the host Tigers (4-0) at 7 p.m. Green Bay wraps things up against Mercer (1-3) on Friday at 5 p.m.
Friday, September 6 5 p.m. - Green Bay vs. Mercer [Live Stats]
SCOUTING THE OPPONENTS Troy is coming off its first 20-win season in a decade (21-12) and was picked to finish second in the Sun Belt Conference in 2013. The Trojans enter the Auburn Active Ankle Challenge with a 2-2 record after going 1-2 at the Southern Miss Invitational, defeating Jackson State and falling to Southern Miss and Stephen F. Austin, and earning a 3-0 home win over Georgia Southern on Monday. Thursday’s noon contest will be the first meeting between the two schools.
Auburn is a perfect 4-0 in 2013 after sweeping its opening weekend, which included a 3-1 win over No. 10 Nebraska. It marked the Tigers’ first victory over a top-10 opponent and second over a nationally-ranked team. Auburn is 2-0 all-time against the Phoenix, including a win at the Green Bay/Country Inn & Suites Tournament last season at the Kress Center.
Mercer is 1-3 on the year after losing three of its four matches at the UAB/Samford Invitational last week. The Bears’ lone win of the season was a 3-1 result against Jacksonville State on Friday. Friday’s match will be the first meeting between Green Bay and Mercer.
BAUER POWER Sophomore libero Jillian Bauer (Verona, Wis.) was awarded with a spot on the NIU Invite’s All-Tournament Team after a strong opening weekend with the Phoenix. Bauer had 20 or more digs in all three matches in the tournament, including 21 in the three-set win against Liberty, accumulating 63 total.
Mroczenski was just one block shy of tying the Horizon League’s single-match record of 19 total blocks, set by Milwaukee’s Maddie Sueppel in 2009. Green Bay’s 21 total blocks against Ohio State were the second-most in school history, trailing only the 23 the Phoenix had on Nov. 5, 2004 against Wright State. After one week of play, Mroczenski leads all Horizon League players with 23 total blocks – eight more than the next closest player – and has an average of 1.77 blocks per set.
NEXT ON THE SCHEDULE Following the Auburn Active Ankle Challege, the Phoenix heads to Cedar Falls, Iowa for a pair of contests against Northern Iowa on Saturday, Sept. 15.
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