Dorris Claims Second Volleyball Weekly Honor
Karen Dorris averaged five kills per set last week.<I>Image courtesy of Mercer athletics.</I>
Karen Dorris averaged five kills per set last week.Image courtesy of Mercer athletics.

Monday, October 20, 2008

MACON, Ga. - The Mercer Bears clinched a berth in next month's Atlantic Sun Conference Championship over the weekend, winning for the ninth time in their last 10 matches. Outside hitter Karen Dorris led the Bears to a 3-0 week against A-Sun competition with three double-doubles, and on Monday, the senior earned her second Player of the Week award of 2008 and of her career, the conference office announced.

The Nashville, Tenn. native led her team to three straight victories over conference opponents, recording double-double performances in each contest. The Bears' leader amassed 55 kills for an average of 5.00 kills per set, while striking just 20 errors and finishing the week with .271 hitting percentage. Dorris also notched 44 digs (4.00 d/s), four total blocks, a pair of service aces and two assists on the week. On Tuesday, Dorris posted a career-high and team season-high 27 kills and added 17 digs to lift the Bears over Kennesaw State 3-1. On Friday, the Bears hosted ETSU in a rematch of a five set thriller played earlier in the season. Dorris knocked down a match-high 13 kills and contributing 10 digs as the Bears rolled to a 3-0 win. Against USC Upstate, the education major pounded out 15 kills, tallied 17 digs, and chipped in a block-solo, a block-assist, and a set assist in the 3-1 win.

The Atlantic Sun Conference is an 11-member league committed to Building Winners for Life, with a focus on academic and athletic integrity and a balance between the two for the student-athlete, and maintaining a high level of sportsmanship. Headquartered in Macon, Ga., the A-Sun encompasses six of the top eight media markets in the Southeast. The A-Sun consists of some of the most dynamic private and public institutions in the region: Belmont University, Campbell University, East Tennessee State University, Florida Gulf Coast University, Jacksonville University, Kennesaw State University, Lipscomb University, Mercer University, University of North Florida, University of South Carolina Upstate and Stetson University.

Other Top Performers
Chelsey Denesha, Kenensaw State (Jr. – OH – Watertown, N.Y. – Criminal Justice) – Led the Owls with 3.36 kills per set and 1.00 blocks per game, leading the Owls to their first weekend sweep in conference play in program history.

Roberta Santos, FGCU (Sr. – S –Recife, Brazil – Resort and Hospitality Management) – Guided the offense to a .297 hitting percentage with 76 assists in the two matches to give FGCU sole possession of first place.

Sara Bendorf, Jacksonville (Sr. – OH – Buckley, Wash. – Accounting) –For the week, tallied 31 kills, a 4.43 kill per set average, a .260 hitting percentage, 22 digs and 3.14 digs per set.

A-Sun Weekly Notes
Jacksonville’s 13-6 start (8-3 in the A-Sun) represents the best opening to a season in the A-Sun era for the Dolphins.

The Lipscomb Lady Bisons have qualified for the Atlantic Sun Tournament for the fourth consecutive season. They are the defending tournament champions.

Kennesaw State earned its first Atlantic Sun Conference weekend sweep, topping USC Upstate in four sets and sweeping East Tennessee State. The Owls started the second half of the double round robin schedule with a 2-1 mark.