Aug. 28, 2002
The 2002 Clemson Tiger volleyball team will open its season Aug. 30 at the Howdy’s Pepperdine Classic in Malibu, CA. Clemson will face preseason ranked opponent Pepperdine, as well as Michigan who received votes in the preseason list. Pepperdine is ranked 8th, while Michigan received 10 votes in the preseason poll. The Tigers will also play the South Florida Bulls, who finished the 2001 season tied for second in Conference USA.
Under head coach Jolene Jordan Hoover, the Tigers are 6-3 in season openers and 3-3 in season openers at tournaments. Clemson’s only season opening losses in the last nine years were to Colorado in the Colorado Powerbar Tournament in Boulder last season, to BYU at the Shamrock Invitational in South Bend, IN in 2000 and to Oregon at the University Park Collins, CO, in 1995.
The Tigers return 10 letterwinners and four starters from the 2001 squad, including senior Jessi Betcher and sophomores Lori Ashton, Ryane Beasley and Leslie Finn. Betcher, the Tigers’ all-time leader in assists per game with an 11.85 average and a three-year starter at the setter position, ranks second all-time on Clemson’s career list with 3,756 assists. Last season she tallied 1,027 assists and led the Tigers in digs with 284.
Red-shirt sophomore Ryane Beasley will help lead the Tigers at the outside hitter position. During the 2001 season, she ranked second on the team in kills (313) and she was third on the team in digs (244).
Finn, a sophomore from California, played in 79 matches last season recording 236 kills and 159 digs. The outside hitter ranked third on the team in hitting percentage (.248) as a freshman.
Ashton was a member of the ACC All-Freshman team, played in 103 games as a rookie, and led the team in block solos, block assists, blocks per game and total blocks. She has already broken into the Clemson record books, as she is fifth all-time in blocks per game and 10th in hitting percentage.
Clemson’s first game is on Friday, Aug. 30 at 5:00 p.m. (PT) against Pepperdine. On Saturday the Tigers will face Michigan at 12:00 p.m. (PT) and South Florida at 7:00 p.m. (PT).
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