The Women’s Volleyball team has been tearing up conference play this season, as they notched another two wins on October 20 and 22. These wins came against Tulsa and a tough SMU team. The team has been playing exceptionally well since conference play started, po
sting a 8-2 record and recently have won five straight games. The Owls look to keep their record this high as they start the second half of conference play.
October 20, vs. Tulsa, W 3-1
The Owls walked away with the win on Friday, October 20, as they hosted the then 9-11 Tulsa team. Temple dropped the first set but won the final three, improving their record to 11-6. The Owls set their season high for digs with 95 as a team. The Owls played a great match and Izzy Rapacz, Kyra Coundourides and Katerina Papazoglou all finished with double-doubles in this game. Kyra Coundourides however, was three kills away from getting her first triple-double of her career. She posted 46 assists, 19 digs, and seven kills. Everyone played their part and got involved. Janine Simmons led the team with five blocks, as Dana Westfield added two blocks, five digs and 11 kills of her own. Temple played as a team in this match as they coasted to the victory on Friday night.
October 22, vs. SMU, W 3-1
On the following Sunday, the Owls hosted the defending AAC Champions. The SMU Mustangs have been playing very well this season, and sat at a conference record of 8-1, prior to the matchup with the Owls. The game was close in every set and could have went either way. The Owls took the first set, and dropped the second set to the Mustangs but closed the game out, winning the next two sets to improve to a season record of 12-6 and more importantly, a conference record of 8-2. The Mustangs fell to 8-2 in the conference this year. The Owls and Mustangs both now chase Wichita State, as the frontrunners to win the conference. The Owls had great performances from Izzy Rapacz who continued her dominance this season, with a near triple-double, allotting for 19 kills, 11 digs, and eight blocks. Freshman Katerina Papazoglou played another great game, with another double-double in this one. Junior Mia Heirakuji played an exceptional game as well, ending with the game’s best, 23 digs. The team performed at a high level against a very tough SMU team, and improved their winning streak to five games.
Weekend Star: Katerina Papazoglou
Katerina Papazoglou is the Weekend Star, due to her recent success in crucial matches. Katerina is a freshman from Greece, but she does not look like a freshman when she is playing in big games. Papazoglou performed at a high level against both Tulsa and SMU, as she finished with a double-double in each match. Katerina played in all four sets in both games and ended with 13 digs and 13 kills against Tulsa and 10 digs and 13 kills against SMU. She helped the team get the wins and certainly did her job. Look for Katerina to be a driving force in coming games and certainly for years to come, as she is just getting started at Temple.
Next up, the Owls will be playing away against Memphis on Friday, November 3, at 8 pm. Two days later they will travel to Kansas to play Wichita State on Sunday, November 5, at 1 pm. Both of these games are crucial as the end of the year is rapidly approaching, but the game against Wichita State is a must win for the Owls. Memphis currently sits at a record of 8-14, and lost the first showing against Temple, three sets to none. Wichita State however, has been playing exceptionally well this year. They currently are undefeated in conference play at a record of 10-0 and they are 18-3 on the season. They beat Temple in the first meeting this season, three sets to one. Both of these upcoming games are crucial if the Owls look to derail Wichita State’s hope to win the conference this year.