With 9 newcomers, XULA volleyball schedule will start Saturday and extend into spring

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NEW ORLEANS — Xavier University of Louisiana is opting in for volleyball during the COVID-19 pandemic, with first serve this weekend and matches in both semesters of the 2020-21 academic year.

XULA’s opener will start at 2 p.m. Saturday (Oct. 3) against city rival Loyola at the Wolf Pack’s home facility, The Den.

XULA will play two home matches Oct. 10 and two more at home Oct. 17. The NAIA moved its national championship tournament to the spring because of the pandemic, and as a result the Gulf Coast Athletic Conference pushed back its league schedule to a mid-February start.

Traditionally, countable matches for U.S. collegiate women’s volleyball teams are played during the fall semester only.

“Our women have been working hard to stay healthy and follow Xavier guidelines,” fourth-year XULA head coach Pat Kendrick said. “We look forward to finally competing this weekend and measuring our progress.”

The GCAC Tournament will be played April 9-10 in Talladega, Ala., at Talladega College’s new Dr. Billy C. Hawkins Student Activity Center.

Xavier University of Louisiana has nine newcomers on its volleyball roster for the 2020-21 academic year:

• Semira Blair, a 5-foot-6 sophomore setter from Fort Worth, Texas, and Paschal High School and a transfer from NCAA Division I Howard University.
• Adaeze Crenshaw, a 6-1 freshman middle blocker/right side from Nashville, Tenn., and Martin Luther King Jr. Magnet High School.
• Jaela Drumgole, a 5-5 freshman libero from Geismar, La., and Dutchtown High School.
• Alana Faust, a 5-10 freshman right side from Inglewood, Calif., and Da Vinci Design School.
• Kendall Mack, a 6-2 freshman middle blocker from Tyrone, Ga., and Sandy Creek High School.
• Maddie Meyer, a 5-5 freshman defensive specialist from Arlington, Texas, and Mansfield Timberview Hgh School.
• April Nalls, a 5-8 freshman defensive specialist/outside hitter from Union City, Ga., and Atlanta’s Westlake High School.
• Emi Riglioni, a 5-7 freshman setter from Rome, Italy, and Liceo Benedetto Croce.
• Kennedy Wade, a 5-9 freshman defensive specialist/outside hitter from Gainesville, Fla., and Buchholz High School.
The newbies join eight returning letterwomen — Kayla Black, Vivica Price-Spraggins, Eva Le Guillou, Jennifer Torres, Taylor McGee, Bria Mayes, Maya Smith and Angela Egonu — for Pat Kendrick’s fourth season as XULA head coach.

XULA seeks to repeat as GCAC regular-season and tournament champion and earn an automatic bid to NAIA nationals. XULA’s current streak for all three achievements is nine consecutive years. XULA was 31-9 last season and, for the first time, won in the opening round of the NAIA’s national tournament.

Xavier University of Louisiana
2020 Women’s Volleyball Schedule

Oct. 3 (Sat.)  at Loyola (N.O.), 2 p.m.
Oct. 10 (Sat.):  MOBILE, noon
Oct. 10 (Sat.):  DILLARD, 2 p.m.
Oct. 17 (Sat.):  LOYOLA (N.O.), noon
Oct. 17 (Sat.):  WILLIAM CAREY, 4 p.m.
Also Oct. 17 at XULA:  Loyola (N.O.) vs. William Carey, 2 p.m.
Oct. 24 (Sat.):  at William Carey, 1 p.m.
Nov. 13 (Fri.):  Life, 5 p.m. (at Mobile, Ala.)
Nov. 13 (Fri.):  at Mobile, 7 p.m.
more matches in 2021 . . .
Feb. 13 (Sat.)  •  at Talladega, 11 a.m.
Feb. 13 (Sat.)  •  Edward Waters, 1 p.m. (at Talladega, Ala.)
Feb. 20 (Sat.)  •  at Rust, 11 a.m.
Feb. 20 (Sat.)  •  Philander Smith, 1 p.m. (at Holly Springs, Miss.)
March 5 (Fri.):  •  DILLARD, 6 p.m.
March 6 (Sat.)  •  at Tougaloo, 11 a.m.
March 14 (Sun.):  •  EDWARD WATERS, 11 a.m.
March 14 (Sun.):  •  TALLADEGA, 3 p.m.
March 27 (Sat.):  •  PHILANDER SMITH, 11 a.m.
March 27 (Sat.):  •  RUST, 3 p.m.
April 3 (Sat.)  •  Tougaloo, 1 p.m.  (at Dillard)
April 3 (Sat.)  •  at Dillard, 3 p.m.
April 9-10 (Fri.-Sat.):  Gulf Coast Athletic Conference Tournament at Talladega, Ala.
April 17 (Sat.):  NAIA National Championship opening round at campus sites, TBA
April 27-May 1 (Tue.-Sat.):  NAIA National Championship final site at Sioux City, Iowa, TBA

•  Gulf Coast Athletic Conference match
All times are Central except where noted
Schedule is subject to change

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