Appalachian State University volleyball announced its grueling 2011 schedule Wednesday afternoon.
Highlighted by contests against two Atlantic Coast Conference foes, one Big 12 and one Big East competitor and 12 home matches, the 2011 slate proves to be challenging for the experienced Mountaineer squad.
The Black and Gold kick off the season by hosting NC State, Kennesaw State and Charlotte the weekend of August 26 in the annual Appalachian Invitational.
The Mountaineers then hit the road for nine away contests that include trips to compete at the Kansas Tournament, The Morehead State Invitational and the James Madison Classic.
Stiff competition awaits ASU, as the squad will take on such top foes as Kansas, Western Michigan, Georgetown, former Southern Conference rival East Tennessee State and James Madison.
Appalachian then returns to the High Country to host ACC rival Wake Forest, Tuesday, September 20.
With little time for turnaround, SoCon action begins in earnest, as the team welcomes Samford and Chattanooga to Boone, N.C. with matches set for Saturday, September 24 and September 25.
The Apps then return to the road for perhaps one of its toughest stints of the 2011 schedule, as the team faces 2011 SoCon North Division Champion Elon, takes on UNCG and then goes to Statesboro, Ga. to play the defending SoCon Tournament Champion, Georgia Southern.
Three consecutive home matches then await ASU, as the squad hosts Western Carolina, Wednesday, October, 12, Furman, Saturday, October 15 and Wofford, Sunday, October 16.
Two more road league contests are next on the schedule for ASU, with the Mountaineers traveling to South Carolina to play College of Charleston and The Citadel the weekend of October 21.
ASU caps off its home slate with three more conference matches, before finishing up the regular season away from the High Country at Western Carolina, Samford and Chattanooga.
Samford will play host to the 2011 SoCon Volleyball Championships, which are set to take place Friday, November 18 and last until Monday, November 21.
Head coach Matt Ginipro is extremely excited about the 2011 schedule and is looking forward to the tough competition his team will go up against.
“We’re very excited to get the 2011 season started,” Ginipro said. “ This team had an excellent spring implementing some new offensive schemes and we are looking forward to putting them into play against our opponents in the fall.
Every year, we try to put together a schedule, which forces us to play our best volleyball every time we step on the court, because that will prepare us for the long haul of the SoCon season. I think we have put together a great schedule in 2011 and I’m ready to get the team back in the gym to get the season started.
It’s been a while since we have started a season off at home and the Appalachian Invitational is a great kick-off to the season. Our second weekend takes us to where four of our players are from. Kasey (Sauls), Lindsay (Sauls), Lauren (Brown) and Jessica (Eley) are VERY excited to head back home to play at KU against the Jayhawks, Belmont and South Dakota State. We then finish off the non-conference season with two tough tournaments at Morehead State and James Madison, along with a mid-week match with Wake Forest. With the group we have returning, we wanted to challenge ourselves and I think we did with our mix of ACC and Big 12 teams in addition to teams who finished at the top of their respective conferences last year.
The conference season will be another battle, as it is every year. The teams in the SoCon keep getting better and better which is great for our league, but it means you have to play your best every day. As always, our goal is to be holding that championship trophy at the end of the season and I know that this team can’t wait to get working towards that goal.”
2011 Appalachian State Volleyball Schedule
Aug 26 NC STATE BOONE, N.C. 7 P.M.
Aug 27 KENNESAW STATE BOONE, N.C. 12:30 P.M.
Aug 27 CHARLOTT E BOONE, N.C. 7 P.M.
Sep 02 South Dakota State at Lawrence, Kan. 10 a.m.
Sep 02 Belmont at Lawrence, Kan. 5 p.m.
Sep 03 Kansas at Lawrence, Kan. 1 p.m.
Morehead State Invitational
Sep 09 Morehead State at Morehead, Ky. 11 a.m.
Sep 09 Western Michigan at Morehead, Ky. 4:30 p.m.
Sep 10 George Mason at Morehead, Ky. 11:30 a.m.
Sep 16 Georgetown at Harrisonburg, Va. 5 p.m.
Sep 17 East Tennessee State at Harrisonburg, Va. 10 a.m.
Sep 17 James Madison at Harrisonburg, Va. 7:30 p.m.
Sep 20 WAKE FOREST BOONE, N.C. 7 P.M.
Sep 24 SAMFORD * BOONE, N.C. 7 P.M.
Sep 25 CHATT ANOOGA * BOONE, N.C. 4 P.M.
Oct 01 Elon * at Elon, N.C. 7 p.m.
Oct 02 UNCG * at Greensboro, N.C. 5 p.m.
Oct 08 Georgia Southern * at Statesboro, Ga. 7 p.m.
Oct 12 WESTERN CAROLINA * BOONE, N.C. 7 P.M.
Oct 15 FURMAN * BOONE, N.C. 5 P.M.
Oct 16 WOFFORD * BOONE, N.C. 5 P.M.
Oct 21 College of Charleston * at Charleston, S.C. 7 P.M.
Oct 22 The Citadel * at Charleston, S.C. 6 p.m.
Oct 28 UNCG * BOONE, N.C. 7 P.M.
Oct 30 ELON * BOONE, N.C. 2 P.M.
Nov 04 DAVIDSON * BOONE, N.C. 7 P.M.
Nov 08 Western Carolina * at Cullowhee, N.C. 7 p.m.
Nov 12 Chattanooga * at Chattanooga, Tenn. 7 p.m.
Nov 13 Samford * at Birmingham, Ala. 2 p.m.
Nov 18 SoCon Championships at Birmingham, Ala. TBA
* Conference Games