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ORU Volleyball Begins 2017 Campaign at No. 25 Purdue

ORU Volleyball Begins 2017 Campaign at No. 25 Purdue
Week #1 | ORU at Purdue Mortar Board Premiere
Schedule Coverage Series History

at Purdue
  Aug. 25 | 9 a.m. (CT)

at No. 25 Purdue
   Live Stats | Live Video ($)

All-Time vs. Purdue:
  First-Ever Meeting


vs. Alabama
  Aug. 25 | 4:30 p.m. (CT)

vs. Alabama
   Live Stats

All-Time vs. Alabama:
  ORU leads 2-1


vs. Cleveland State
  Aug. 26 | 11 a.m. (CT)

vs. Cleveland State
   Live Stats

All-Time vs. CSU:
  First-Ever Meeting


Social: Facebook | Twitter | Instagram      Notes: ORU



WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. – The Oral Roberts volleyball teams opens the 2017 season Friday morning against perennial power and No. 25 Purdue in the first of three matches at the 27th-annual Purdue Mortar Board Premier at Holloway Gymnasium. The Golden Eagles then face Alabama Friday evening before closing the event versus Cleveland State Saturday morning.

Over the course of the opening weekend, ORU will take on a pair of NCAA Tournament participants in 2016 with Purdue and Cleveland State. The contest against the Boilermakers marks the Golden Eagles' first meeting with a ranked opponent since Sept. 1, 2012 when battling Dayton at the University Plaza Invitational.

Opening Serve

•ORU returns all six starters as well as its libero from a 2016 squad that advanced to the conference tournament semifinals for the first time in The Summit League since 2011 and first overall since 2012 in the Southland Conference. ORU begins the 2017 season ranked third in the league's preseason coaches' poll behind three-time defending champion Denver and South Dakota.

•The Golden Eagles have reached the conference tournament each of the last five seasons. They were eliminated in the semifinals by host Denver in 2016 after falling in the quarterfinals in 2014 and 2015.

Laura Milos enters her final collegiate campaign after breaking The Summit League's single-season kill record as a junior totaling 631, ranking fourth in all of NCAA Division I volleyball. Milos became just the third student-athlete in program history to hit the milestone. The Porec, Croatia, native also closed the year leading the nation in service aces (81) and aces per set (0.74).

•Senior setter Lucija Bojanjac begins her fourth season as the starter and is closing in on the all-time assists record at ORU. A native of Zagreb, Croatia, she has tallied at least 1,000 assists each season for the navy and gold and ranked third in the league averaging 9.71 assists per set.

•ORU returns two more seniors as Shelby Cox and Maggie DiPronio provide added leadership. Cox started 30 times in 2016 and was second in kills for the Golden Eagles with 297, while DiPronio was a dangerous server recording 0.37 aces per set to rank third in the conference and 62nd nationally.

•Libero Tori Roe returns to a familiar spot defensively as a junior after pacing the squad in digs with a career-best 385 to sit in the top 10 in The Summit League. Juniors Bria Bergman and Megan Doran enter 2017 with increased expectations after expanded roles a season ago making 24 and 22 appearances at setter and middle blocker, respectively.

•The Golden Eagles welcome back a pair of sophomores, Bri Greenlee and Taylan Nero, which were named to the 2016 Summit League All-Freshman Team. Greenlee led ORU in blocks totaling 84 on the year, while Nero had the highest blocks per set average of any player at 0.84. Fellow sophomore Katarina Mikulic showed her versatility playing multiple positions to earn 27 starts.

•ORU closed 2017 ranked second of 329 teams in the country hitting 224 service aces, only two behind the nation's leader. The Golden Eagles also were second in the NCAA with 1.93 aces per set.

•Head Coach Sheera Sirola, ORU's all-time winningest coach, welcomes seven newcomers to the lineup, including two transfers (CeCe Madison, Lara Picht). Five freshmen begin their collegiate careers in Morgan Blomquist, Victoria Mayes, Mya King, Sarah Thiessen and Bailey White.

For the latest information on ORU volleyball, follow the Golden Eagles on Facebook and Instagram or go to  Fans can also receive updates on the team by downloading two mobile apps, ORU Golden Eagles Live and ORU Front Row, available on the App Store and Google Play.