LIONS SET SIGHTS ON CHALLENGING 2012 VOLLEYBALL SCHEDULE
COMMERCE, Texas – A&M-Commerce has released its 2012 volleyball schedule, announced today by head coach Craig Case. The Lions have 30 matches on its slate, including 12 home dates on the court of the Field House.
"We can't wait for the 2012 campaign to get going," Case said. "We fell short of our goals in 2011 but we used those failures to fuel and guide us in the off-season and I think we made great strides in the areas that we were lacking. Our number one goal come August is to get off to a hot start, which is something that has hindered us for the past two seasons. With so many Lone Star Conference matches on our schedule we have limited opportunity for non-conference victories so we have to get going right from our first match."
The 2012 season begins with a pair of preseason tournaments as A&M-Commerce will head to Arkadelphia, Ark. for the Henderson State Invitational on Friday, August 31 and Saturday, September 1. The Lions then head to Stephenville for a tournament hosted by Tarleton State on Friday, September 7 and Saturday, September 8.
The 2012 Lone Star Conference portion of the schedule gets underway the following weekend as the Lions travel to Incarnate Word (Sept. 14) and Texas A&M-Kingsville (Sept. 15) before finally taking to the court at the Field House, hosting Texas Woman's in the home opener at 7 p.m. Tuesday, September 18.
That marks the first of a three-match home stand as A&M-Commerce faces reigning LSC champion West Texas A&M (Sept. 21) and Eastern New Mexico (Sept. 22) that weekend before a non-conference bout with Southeastern Oklahoma State on September 25.
A&M-Commerce then hits the road to close out September and into the first weekend of October, traveling to Midwestern State (Sept. 28), Cameron (Sept. 29), Tarleton State (Oct. 5) and Angelo State (Oct. 6) as part of its four-game road swing.
The Lions return to the Field House on October 9 for a non-conference match with Henderson State before beginning the second half of the LSC schedule hosting Texas A&M-Kingsville (Oct. 12) and Incarnate Word (Oct. 13) in Commerce. A&M-Commerce then faces its final extended road trip of the season, traveling to Eastern New Mexico (Oct. 19), West Texas A&M (Oct. 20) and Abilene Christian (Oct. 23).
After playing an extended number of road games to begin the season, A&M-Commerce gets a healthy dose of home cooking down the stretch of the 2012 season, playing five of its final six games at the Field House. The Lions host Cameron (Oct. 26) and Midwestern State (Oct. 27) on Homecoming weekend before traveling to Denton to face Texas Woman's (Oct. 30) in their final road trip of the season.
A&M-Commerce closes out the 2012 season with three home games, facing Abilene Christian (Nov. 2), Angelo State (Nov. 9) and Tarleton State (Nov. 10) as it looks to make its push for the 2012 Lone Star Conference Championship.
"In the Lone Star Conference you have to be ready to roll every night from the get go," said Case. "Every team in the conference has gotten better in the off-season through development and/or recruiting and it is up to us to grow more than our opponents if we want to start climbing the ranks."
Despite not posting the results it was looking for in 2011 after finishing 11-17, A&M-Commerce is optimistic heading into the 2012 campaign as they return the entire core of its roster, including first team All-LSC middle blocker Rachel Robertson and second team All-LSC setter Jordan Neal. The rest of the 2011 starting lineup also returns in tact and Case has added some new, talented players as the Lions look to make a postseason run in 2012.