Tennessee State volleyball to face Eastern Illinois in day-night double

Courtesy of Scott Wallace, Tennessee State University Athletics

This Saturday the Tennessee State University Tiger Volleyball Team will try to extend their two-game winning streak as they take on the Eastern Illinois Panthers in a day-night doubleheader. (11 a.m. and 6 p.m. ESPN Plus).

With two victories, the Tigers (11-14, 5-7 OVC) could get to .500 in the conference play. This will be a tough task because the Panthers will be looking to snap a three-game losing streak and get back into the race to finish as the OVC’s top team. They sit at two and a half games behind the leader UT-Martin and a half game behind Tennessee Tech.

“Being at home has helped us but we have to figure out how to win anywhere,” said TSU head coach Donika Sutton. “EIU will not just lay down for us. We will have to earn it. We both need these games, so I look for this to be very competitive. It will be important for how we will stand in the conference.”

TSU’s Gina Rivera-Ortiz and Johanna Alcantara earned OVC weekly honors this week. Rivera-Ortiz was named the top defender of the week after getting 64 digs in nine sets helping her team to a home sweep of Southern Illinois University of Edwardsville. After getting 27 digs in the five-set victory over SIUE on Friday, she followed up with 37 on Saturday. The 37 digs are a personal best for her in a four-set match. For the weekend, she only had one receiving error on 58 total attempts for a .983 percentage.

Alcantara was named as the top newcomer for the third time this season and the first time that she earned the best offensive player for the week. She was a force in the two victories this past weekend. Her 27 kills and blistering 513 hitting percentage were both season highs. On Saturday, she had 19 kills swinging at .310. On defense, she contributed with six total blocks.   

The two matches will feature the top defensive team in the conference versus the top scoring offense. TSU comes into the weekend as the top blocking team in the conference with a total of 123.5 and 2.52 blocks per set. The Tigers also lead the league in defensive hitting percentage at .174. EIU is the top team in kills per set at 13.98, assists per set at 13.00 and is second in service aces per set at 1.71. Defensively, they are second in digs per set at 16.33.

The Matchup:  Eastern Illinois Panthers (13-11, 7-4 OVC) at Tennessee State Tigers (11-14, 5-7 OVC).  
Date/Time: Saturday, October 29 || 11:00 a.m. (CST)
Date/Time:  Saturday, October 29 || 6:00 p.m. (CST)
Location: Kean Hall| Nashville, Tennessee
Watch Live:  https://tsutigers.com/sports/womens-volleyball/espnplus.com
Live Statshttps://tsutigers.com/sidearmstats/wvball/summary


  • Johanna Alcantara earned her first OVC Offensive Player of the Week and her third Newcomer of the Week award this week. Alcantara is now ranked fifth in the OVC in kills per set.
  • For the third time this season, Gina Rivera-Ortiz was named the OVC Defensive Player of the Week. She leads the OVC with 288 digs in conference play.
  • Gabrielle Johnson’s 62 blocks leads in OVC play.


  • Kaitlyn Flynn leads the OVC in conference play in points with 209. She is also the leader in kills (188) and kills per set (4.88).
  • Giovana Larregui-Lopez places second in the OVC in kills per set (4.05) and third in total kills (170). She also is the league’s top server with 26 kills.
  • Christina Martinez-Mundo is third in the league in digs with 229.

UP NEXT: The Tigers will be on the road to take on the University of Southern Indiana on November 4th and 5th  

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