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2009 Kentucky Wildcats Volleyball

Looking for current Kentucky Wildcats Volleyball info? Check out our 2010 Kentucky Wildcats Volleyball page.

The Kentucky Wildcats have firmly established themselves as an elite volleyball program not only in the SEC, but also nationally, following a string of mostly successful seasons. That said, there has remained, and likely will continue to remain, one obstacle between the Wildcats and SEC supremacy, and that obstacle resides in Gainesville.

Kentucky Volleyball
Kentucky Volleyball.
Thanks to ukathletics for the photo.

2008 in Review: The Kentucky Wildcats had a very strong 2008 campaign. Overall, the team finished with a 26-6 record, and had a record of 17-3 in the powerful Southeastern Conference. The team played exceptionally well at home (16-3), and also posted a strong road record of 9-2. The team made its 4th consecutive NCAA postseason tournament appearance, however lost in the first round to Michigan in a 5 set heartbreaker.

What to Look for in 2009: The University of Kentucky is another team that looks to come back very strongly in 2009, losing only 2 players from their 2008 roster, and of those 2 players, only 1, Queen Nzenwa, figures to impact the team significantly. In fact, many of the key contributors of the 2008 season will be returning to the squad in 2009, and as a result, this squad should be poised to compete with their main rivals from Florida once again.

The Kentucky attack should still be strong in 2009, despite losing a key cog with the departure of Nzenwa, who was 3rd on the team with 2.3 kills per game in 2008. However, despite her loss, the team does return the two leaders in kills for the 2008, in Sarah Mendoza (who averaged 3.26 kills per game) as well as Lauren Rapp (who averaged 2.86 kills per game). In addition, Ann Armes, Blair Hiler, and Becky Pavan all return with over a kill and a half per game averaged in 2008, so this is a squad that should not be lacking in weapons.

Kentucky Wildcats volleyball team
Kentucky Wildcats volleyball team.
Thanks to ukathletics for the photo.

Defensively, the Wildcats will also feel the loss of Nzenwa, who was 2nd on the team in blocks with 1.12 per game in 2008. However, the team should have more than adequate blocking returning for the 2009 season, as their team leader in 2008, Pavan (who averaged 1.20 blocks per game), returns, as does Rapp and Sarah Rumely, both of whom averaged just under 1 block per game.

Additionally, the team should be completely stocked in some other key areas of their defense, in particular when it comes to digs. All of the team's digs leaders for 2008 will return to the Kentucky squad in 2009, including Brianne Sauer, who at 4.21 digs per game in 2008, was the hands down leader in the category. Sauer will be supported by Rumely, who averaged 2.28 digs per game, as well as Laura Stokowski, who averaged just fewer than 2 per game, and Rapp, who managed 1.75.

Kentucky womens volleyball player spikes over Tennessee
Kentucky womens volleyball player spikes over Tennessee.
Thanks to ukathletics for the photo.

2009 Prediction: The Kentucky Wildcats should once again be potent in 2009, and could very well be capable of wresting the SEC crown from their rival Lady Gators. The slight edge probably still goes to Florida at this point, but it's very close, and these teams should battle all season long.

You can read more about last year's Kentucky Wildcats Volleyball team at 2008 Kentucky Wildcats Volleyball Team.

Kentucky Wildcats Volleyball
Kentucky Wildcats Volleyball

Looking for volleyball equipment or apparel? Check out Pacific Coast Volleyball Camps Official Website.

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