Kirk Jones

Volleyball Sun Belt Conference Tournament preview

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1. Arkansas-Little Rock Trojans

Arkansas-Little Rock is looking to avenge its early exit last year. The Trojans finished the season on a 21-game win streak and a perfect 20-0 in conference. Senior outside hitter Edina Begic was named the Sun Belt Player of the Week on eight different occasions. Begic is almost a shoe-in to win Player of the Year with the second most kills in the conference. The team is loaded with Bosnian talent and remains the favorite to come away with the Sun Belt conference title.

2. Texas State Bobcats 

Volleyball enters last road trip before tournament

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The final road trip of the Texas State volleyball team’s season begins with a bid to the Sun Belt tournament already punched.

Texas State is aiming to secure the second seed in the bracket.

“For what we have been through this season, I’m so proud of our team,” Coach Karen Chisum said. “From all the injuries to the senior graduating last year, to place second—that is an accomplishment.”

The Bobcats take on the Appalachian State Mountaineers, who they defeated at home earlier in the season. Appalachian State has also clinched a bid in the Sun Belt Conference.

“I think the fact that we played at home the last two weeks really helped us,” said Jordan Kohl, freshman right side. “It’s prepared us for this last week and getting us ready for the tournament.” 

Volleyball to play Georgia State at home

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The season is winding down, a Sun Belt Conference tournament bid has been clinched and the Texas State volleyball teams’ practices are shifting to training exercises as the intensity level is moved up a notch.

“We have been training a lot more now,” said Sierra Smith, junior libero. “The practices have been tougher and longer with only one-game weeks. Conditioning has been the focus. It’s actually nice to get back to the basics of getting our bodies ready for the next game.”

The team plays the second game of a three-game home stand against the Georgia State Panthers. The Panthers defeated Texas State 3-1 in Atlanta despite both teams being on opposite sides of the conference spectrum.

Bobcats to face number one team before conference tournament

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The Texas State volleyball team punched its ticket to the Sun Belt Conference tournament with a win against South Alabama.

The Bobcats will face Arkansas-Little Rock, which has won 16 consecutive games entering the matchup, before they can defend last year’s conference championship.

“We want Little Rock, Arkansas to know we mean business when they come to our house.” Coach Karen Chisum said. “We want them to leave not wanting to come back. We would love to get a win and get in their head and be a little afraid of us.”

Arkansas-Little Rock’s top two hitters have combined for 647 kills this season.

Bobcats to play Louisiana-Lafayette, South Alabama on road

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The Texas State volleyball team is 4-4 on the road this season and heading into a weekend of road games, the team will have their work cut out for them against Louisiana-Lafayette and South Alabama.

“If we want to win we have to get Alex Sims and Jordan Kohl more minutes,” Coach Karen Chisum said. “We have 10-12 girls that can contribute every game for us. It just depends on who is bringing the energy.”

Jordan Kohl, freshman outside hitter, and Alex Simms, senior outside hitter, combined for 36 kills in the teams last two games.

The Bobcats will face Louisiana-Lafayette Oct. 31, after defeating the Ragin' Cajuns in three sets in its first matchup.

The Ragin' Cajuns snapped its four game losing streak last week with a win against Abilene Christian.

Volleyball prepares for weekend Sun Belt matchups

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The Texas State volleyball team has won two of its last three games heading into the matchups with the Georgia State Panthers and Arkansas State Red Wolves.

Arkansas State is third in the conference behind Texas State and Arkansas-Little Rock.

The Red Wolves, led by Sarah Kemps, senior outside hitter, are 6-2 in conference.

Kemps is third in the conference in kills per set with 3.8. She is fifth in total kills with 221.

“We have 10 to 12 players on the court that can help us win,” Coach Karen Chisum said. “We have to get Alex Simms and Jordan Kohl back in our rotation.”

Arkansas State’s loss to Arkansas-Little Rock Oct. 14 snapped the team’s six-game winning streak.

Team preparing for Tuesday game against conference champions

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The Texas State football teams’ matchup against Louisiana-Lafayette will be Coach Dennis Franchione’s first career Tuesday night game, and the team is preparing as if it were a bye week.

“The open week is good for us,” Franchione said. “We have two days of this week to lift and watch film. The week will at least let our guys let their legs recover as well as their bodies.”

Louisiana-Lafayette began the season slow, starting 1-3 in non-conference play.

Louisiana-Lafayette’s first conference victory came last week against Georgia State to put the team at 1-0 as the Ragin’ Cajuns look to continue their three-year conference dominance. 

Game updates: Texas State vs. Idaho

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3rd quarter: The Bobcats head into the fourth quarter with a 21-16 lead against the Idaho Vandals. 

Idaho junior running back Elijhaa Penny's six-yard run cut the deficit to five points with 35 seconds remaining in the quarter. 

Tyler Jones, sophomore quarterback, forced a pass in double coverage, resulting in his second interception of the game. Craig Mager, senior cornerback, returned Idaho sophomore punter Austin Rehkow's punt before fumbling the ball to the Vandals. The Bobcats have committed four turnovers in the game.

Idaho sophomore running back Richard Montgomery's five-yard touchdown capped a 15 play, 84-yard drive that lasted six minutes and 15 seconds.

Team prepares for Homecoming game

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The Texas State football team opens homecoming weekend with the teams’ first Sun Belt Conference team this season against the Idaho Vandals.

The Bobcats are facing a third straight top 30 passing offense this week.

“We are going to try and stop them with our four man front,” Coach Dennis Franchione said. “Coach Thompson will bring pressure when he needs to and disguises it well, but the biggest thing is winning our on-on-ones.”

Freshman quarterback Matt Linehan has thrown for a season total of 1278 yards that ranks sec- ond in the Sun Belt.

Linehan is second among all freshman in total passing yards and 17th in the nation in that category

PRACTICE REPORT: Texas State preparing for Homecoming game against Idaho after overtime win

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The Texas State football team is preparing for another high-octane passing attack for the third consecutive week.

The 0-4 Idaho Vandals, led by freshman quarterback Matt Linehan, rank 20th in passing yards per game.

Following a triple-overtime victory against Tulsa, the Bobcats have to shift gears into conference season.

“Every day is somewhere for improvement,” secondary coach Jason Washington said. “That was a good win, but we have to put it behind us and concentrate on Idaho. We have to come out and perform. It won’t be easy.”

Linehan is 17th in the nation in total passing yards. His 1,297 yards are the second-highest among freshmen behind Arizona quarterback Anu Solomon.

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