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Published 11/08/2012
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First-Place Volleyball Heads Back to N.C.

CORAL GABLES, Fla. - The University of Miami volleyball team will return to the state of North Carolina this weekend to take on Wake Forest and Duke in a pair of road matches. The Canes are tied for first place with Florida State in the Atlantic Coast Conference standings with five regular season contests remaining.

It will be the first time UM has played on back-to-back days since Sept. 14-15, as the match at Wake Forest will be on Friday at 6:30 p.m. and match at Duke on Saturday at 7 p.m. Links to live stats will be available at

"We really want to sharpen our play this weekend and show better organization on defense," head coach Nicole Lantagne Welch said. "We also want to improve our blocking and transition offense. Both opponents this week are playing a higher level than the first time we saw them so we will have to be ready for their best."

Miami (21-4, 13-2) most recently defeated NC State in four sets last Sunday behind a match-high 14 kills by sophomore Alexis Mourning and 20 digs by junior libero Ryan Shaffer. Junior right side Alex Johnson collected her seventh double-double of the season with 12 kills and 12 digs. It was the 11th win in 12 matches for the Canes.

Wake Forest (10-17, 4-11) took down Boston College on the road its last time out, led by a match-high 20 kills by Jazmen Russell. For the season, Andrea Beck leads the Deacons with 342 kills, while Megan Miller has 435 digs. The Canes took down WF in three sets on Sept. 30 to take an 11-3 advantage in the all-time series.

Duke (14-13, 5-10) is scheduled to take on Florida State on Thursday evening before playing the Hurricanes. Coming into the weekend, the Blue Devils are led by Christina Gray and Emily Sklar with 265 kills each. Miami won the matchup in Coral Gables, 3-1, on Sept. 28, but Duke leads the all-time series, 9-6.

Following this trip, UM will close out its home schedule against Boston College and Maryland before traveling to Florida State for the regular season finale.

Single-game tickets to home volleyball matches are available for as low as $3. Call 1-800-GO-CANES to order your tickets today. For all the latest information on Miami Hurricanes volleyball, follow the official Twitter feed, @CanesVB, or "Like Us" on Facebook at