Sept. 24, 2009
QUEENS, N.Y. -
The St. John's volleyball team begins is 2009 BIG EAST season as it hosts DePaul and Notre Dame on Sept, 25 and 27. The Red Storm defeated local-rival LIU, 3-2, on Tuesday to rise to a 4-1 record at home this season, winning the last four games played in Taffner Field House.
STJ has a 7-9 record, including a 1-4 slate at home, in BIG EAST season-openers.
Sophomore Darlene Ramdin remains ranked first in the BIG EAST with 5.06 kills per set and 5.80 points per set, which puts her third n the nation in both categories.
Freshman Gabriela Petkova is ranked fifth in assists per set at 10.45. Petkova is also ranked in the nation's top-50 in the category.
Rookie Ashley Asing also ranks among the conference's top dig leaders, averaging 3.78 digs per set to place her eighth among league players.
SCOUTING THE BLUE DEMONS
DePaul visits Queens with a 6-8 record and is 1-2 on the road this season. DePaul has lost five of its last six matches after starting the season at 2-0. The Blue Demons are led by Sarah Cullen, who averages 3.34 kills per set this season.
The Red Storm fell to the Blue Demons, 3-1 on the road in the last meeting on Nov. 16, 2008. STJ held a 4-0 advantage from 2004 to 2007. St. John's is 2-0 in the all-time series against DePaul in Queens. 2009 marks the first season in which St. John's begins its BIG EAST campaign against DePaul.
SCOUTING THE FIGHTING IRISH
Notre Dame has a 6-4 record approaching the first BIG EAST weekend of the 2009 season. The Irish have won three of the last four matches heading into conference play. UND is 1-2 against top-20 teams this season, defeating then-No. 5 Stanford, 3-0. The Irish also faced then-No. 7 Michigan and then-No. 19 Florida State. Kristen Dealy and Serinity Phillips tie for the team-lead in kills with 126. Phillips leads the squad in hitting percentage at .330.
Notre Dame leads the all-time series, 13-3 against the Red Storm. The Fighting Irish claimed the first 11 meetings with St. John's before the Red Storm broke through in 2006 with a 3-0 sweep on the road. STJ matched up against the Irish again in the 2006 BIG EAST Tournament, falling 3-1 in the second round. The Red Storm defeated UND in the regular season, 3-0, in 2007 and 3-2 in 2008. The Irish ended the season for STJ in 2008 in the second round of the BIG EAST Tournament, 3-1, for the second time in three years.
The Red Storm hits the road next weekend to face Georgetown and South Florida in BIG EAST action. St. John's takes on the Hoyas on Friday, Oct. 2 at 7 p.m. before heading to South Florida for a 2 p.m. match on Oct. 4.
HOME GAME HABITS
The Red Storm is 4-1 at home this season and is riding a four-game home court win streak into its BIG EAST season-opening weekend.
Since 2006, STJ owns an impressive 36-2 record in Queens, including two perfect seasons at home.
RED STORM RECLAIMS QUEENS/NASSAU CUP
Head coach Joanne Persico and the Red Storm brought the Queens/Nassau Cup back to Queens on Sept. 16 with a 3-1 defeat of Hofstra. STJ fell in the first set, but rallied behind Darlene Ramdin to win the final three sets. Ramdin finished with a game-high 22 kills.
The win gave St. John's the 8-7 advantage in the all-time series with Hofstra and evens the Queens/Nassau Cup titles at four each.
BIG EAST WEEKLY HONORS
Sophomore Darlene Ramdin earned STJ Classic All-Tournament team honors for her performance against Boston College, Fordham and Quinnipiac. Ramdin combined for 65 kills in the tournament and went on to receive the first BIG EAST Player of the Week accolades of her career, outscoring the next-highest leader in the conference by 28 points in her first week back on the court for St. John's this fall. Ramdin now ranks No. 1 in the BIG EAST Conference at 5.67 kills per set.
Ramdin's 29 kills against Boston College on Sept. 4 were the most by a member of the Red Storm since Dec. 7, 2007 when Hui Ping Huang tallied 29 against USC in the third round of the NCAA Tournament.
RED STORM TAKES HOME PAIR OF WINS IN ST. JOHN'S CLASSIC
St. John's earned two wins in the St. John's Classic on Sept. 4 and 5. The Red Storm made its first sweep of the season over Quinnipiac, 3-0, before downing Fordham in the nightcap, 3-1.
Sophomore Darlene Ramdin notched 29 kills in a 3-1 loss to Boston College and continued the hot-streak with 25 kills against Fordham and 11 versus Quinnipiac, both game-highs. Her performance landed her STJ Classic All-Tournament team honors.
Head coach Joanne Persico notched the 15th win of her career over Fordham as part of the STJ Classic. The Red Storm has a 15-1 all-time series record with the Rams, the only loss coming in 1999 in the Bronx.
Freshman Ashley Asing came up with a game-high 21 digs to lead the Red Storm against Fordham. The rookie earned the starting role this season on defense and has held her own in the back row for St. John's.
Rookie Gabriela Petkova's 55 helpers against the Fordham Rams were the most by a member of the Red Storm this season. Petkova is ranked seventh in the conference in assists per game at 10.27.
ST. JOHN'S NOTCHES FIRST WIN OF THE SEASON AT STONY BROOK
Stony Brook claimed the first set, but the Red Storm took over from there, winning the second set, 25-15, the third set, 25-18 and the fourth, 25-22. The match marked sophomore Darlene Ramdin's first of the season after returning from the World Nationals, where she represented Trinidad and Tobago. Ramdin recorded 20 kills, a then career-high. Freshman Gabriela Petkova notched 43 assists in the match and junior Kun Song tallied a game-high 13 digs.
BIG EAST PRESEASON COACHES POLL
STJ was picked to finish fifth in the BIG EAST conference in 2009 according to the BIG EAST Preseason Coaches Poll. The Red Storm has been chosen in the top five in each of the last four seasons and took home three consecutive BIG EAST regular season titles.