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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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A&M volleyball plays in breast cancer awareness game against Alabama

Head+coach+Laurie+Corbelli%26%23160%3Bbrings+the+team+in+during+a+match.
Photo by File

Head coach Laurie Corbelli brings the team in during a match.

Aggie volleyball returns home to play the Alabama Crimson Tide 6:30 p.m. Friday where the team will be promoting Breast Cancer Awareness.

Texas A&M (10-6, 3-2 SEC) head coach Laurie Corbelli posts a 5-2 record against the Tide, but said it should be quite the matchup.

“They were picked to finished second or third in the league,” Corbelli said. “We tied with them last year in the end. We are real similar in what we have to offer on the court, so it will be a battle.”

With a season record of 5-1 against opponents at home, the Aggies have barely put their foot in the door against SEC opponents at home with a 1-1 record. They have managed to gain a tournament victory in the Texas A&M Invitational but also upset then No. 15 Colorado State. The Aggies suffered their first home loss in their SEC opener to Arkansas.

The Crimson Tide (8-10, 2-2 SEC) have struggled greatly when not at home. A tally on the season posts their road record at 2-6 with wins against only Cal State Fullerton and NIU. Since starting SEC play, the team has yet to win a game on the road with losses to Tennessee and a ranked Kentucky.

In the SEC, A&M is in third place in hitting percentage (.269), fourth with 12.76 assists per set and fourth with 2.37 blocks per set. The Tide averages just ahead of A&M with 13.68 kills per set, leads A&M in service aces and holds 214 more digs than the Aggies. Both teams remain close in statistics and records, and last year both games between the teams went to five sets.

“It’s always a [fight],” Corbelli said. “We’re just so similar, we know each other really well. There is a familiarity. It’s not really a rivalry that’s exposed, but I think deep down both teams know that it’s going to be a long, hard battle and so it’s kind of like a rivalry.”

The Crimson Tide features Brittany Thomas, who has started every match this season and leads the team in kills with 231. Despite being the second shortest on the team, standing at 5-foot-5, Natalie Murison excels as the libero of the team with 279 digs. Leah Lawrence and Krystal Rivers lead the defense with 57 and 62 blocks, respectively.

“They are incredibly physical,” Corbelli said. “They have a right-side attacker, Rivers, who is just a super, super phenomenal athlete. Outside hitters that are big on just coming at you, [they are] smart attackers. They have an all around game.”
The Aggies compete against the Crimson Tide at 6:30 p.m. Friday at home. The game will be broadcast on SEC Network +.

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