NSU hosts Grambling in first home match of 2019

After two tournaments and seven road matches to start the season, Northwestern State volleyball plays their first home match of the season on Tuesday.

The Lady Demons (5-2) host Grambling State (1-3) at 1 p.m. Tuesday inside Prather Coliseum, their third match against a SWAC opponent in the last seven days.

Streaming video for the match is available on http://www.NSUDemons.com and through the Northwestern State Athletics mobile app, which can be downloaded free through the Apple Store or Google Play.

NSU comes off its second 2-1 tournament weekend with a pair of 3-0 wins over Mississippi Valley State and Tennessee State. The lone loss came at the hands of tournament host South Alabama by a score of 3-1.

“It was another great weekend in my opinion,” coach Sean Kiracofe said following the win Saturday. “Like I’ve been saying, we keep giving ourselves great opportunities to win against good teams no matter what situation we find ourselves in. Being 6-1 would feel really good right now, but you can’t define a value on everything you take away from a fourth set like that against USA. So we’re feeling good with where we’re at.”

In the 3-0 sweep of MVSU to start the weekend, the Lady Demons tied a school record by winning 11 consecutive sets, even without offensive leaders Hannah Brister and Alexis Warren in the lineup.

“We think this group can do a lot of great things,” Kiracofe said. “So to have them get that feeling of winning on a consistent basis is a great thing.”

Despite only playing two matches, both Brister and Warren earned spots on the Jaguar Invitational All-Tournament team, combining for 62 kills and 38 digs. The Lady Demons know what they can expect from those two. The focus this week, starting with Grambling, will be finding more offensive consistency from other players on the floor.

“We’ve had a lot of different people show up and do some really great stuff for us,” Kiracofe said. “Kourtney Seaton has been fantastic, Darria Williams has been good, Reagan Lee has shown up and had some great hitting percentages in matches. To be able to get one or two of those on a little bit more of a consistent basis is what is really going to show us how good we can be this year.”

With four matches this week, in the span of four days, starting to find that consistency against the Lady Tigers will be an important factor in how the Lady Demons fare in their toughest tournament of the season at Texas A&M later this week.

Grambling won their first match of the season last week, a convincing 3-0 sweep of Tougaloo College. The match win was the first time the Lady Tigers won a set this year, falling in straight sets to their three other opponents.

The Lady Demons have won seven consecutive home-opening matches, dating back to 2012, and are 37-2 all-time against Grambling.

Photo credit: Gary Hardamon