Less than a week after the start of official practices, Ashland University's volleyball team will have an exhibition match against an NCAA Division I opponent at Kates Gymnasium.
The Eagles, coming off a 23-11 season and an NCAA Division II postseason appearance in 2016, will play host to Kent State on Aug. 19 at 5 p.m. A year ago, the Golden Flashes were 15-15 overall.
Ashland was picked to win the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference South Division by conference head coaches, and returns 10 players, led by sophomore outside hitter Shelby Woycik, an All-GLIAC honorable mention selection, and sophomore middle blocker/outside hitter Sophi Cudworth, who landed a spot on the Midwest Region All-Tournament Team.
Kent State returns 13 letter winners from 2016, paced by seniors Kelsey Bittinger (outside hitter) and Challen Geraghty (defensive specialist/libero), each two-time first-team All-Mid-American Conference selections.
The Eagles will begin the 2017 regular season with its five-team tournament on Sept. 1-2 at Kates Gymnasium. Ashland will play Urbana (2 p.m.) and Truman (7 p.m.) on Sept. 1, and Lake Erie (2 p.m.) and Pitt-Johnstown (7 p.m.).