By Adam Brown
The Ole Miss volleyball team returns to action this weekend in New Orleans as they take part in the Allstate Sugar Bowl Volleyball Classic hosted by the Tulane Green Wave. The Rebels will take the floor first against the Houston Baptist Huskies on Friday at 3 p.m.
Ole Miss (0-3) got off to a rocky start at the Rebels Invitational when they dropped three matches to Rice, UCF and Iowa State.
Head Coach Steven McRoberts’ team was led in passing by senior libero Nicole Purcell who tallied 62 digs on the weekend, including falling one shy of her career-high with 25 Sunday against UCF. The veteran was honored with All-Tournament recognition as she posted back-to-back games with 20 digs or more for the first time, marking the third/fourth 20-plus digs contests of her career. Purcell recorded the second-most digs in the league during opening weekend, averaging 5.17 digs per set.
Junior Lauren Bars recorded double-doubles in all three of Ole Miss’ matches this past weekend.
Houston Baptist (3-1) swept Prairie View A&M in their last match on Tuesday. Houston Baptist welcomes back 12 letter winners from a squad that went 16-16 in 2018. Junior outside hitter Mikayla Vivens, a Southland First-Team All-Conference selection, led the league with 24 double-doubles a year ago. Vivens teams up with junior middle blocker Megan Patillo and sophomore outside hitter Kelly Colwell on the Southland Preseason All-Conference team.
This will be the first-ever meeting on the floor between the Rebels and the Huskies.
Ole Miss will take the floor against Missouri State (on Saturday) and Tulane (on Sunday).