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Tulane to Host 11th Annual Allstate Sugar Bowl Volleyball Classic

Thursday, September 6, 2012

The 11th annual Allstate Sugar Bowl Collegiate Classic, hosted by the Tulane University women's volleyball team, will be played this Friday and Saturday at the Hertz Center on the Tulane campus. In addition to Tulane, the event will feature Mississippi State, Pittsburgh and Sam Houston State. The Green Wave has won three of last five Sugar Bowl Collegiate Classics.

Allstate Sugar Bowl Volleyball

Admission for the event will for $6.00 for adults, $5.00 for seniors and $4.00 for children and will be a cash only transaction. If needed, an ATM is located on the bottom level of the Reily Center - located behind the Hertz Center - or at the Capital One Bank location on Claiborne Ave.

Tournament Schedule:
Friday, 10 a.m.: Sam Houston State vs. Mississippi State
Friday, 4:30 p.m.: Pittsburgh vs. Sam Houston State
Friday, 7 p.m.: Tulane vs. Mississippi State
Saturday, 10 a.m.: Tulane vs. Pittsburgh
Saturday, 4:30 p.m.: Pittsburgh vs. Mississippi State
Saturday, 7 p.m.: Tulane vs. Sam Houston State

The Hertz Center is the new state of the art basketball/volleyball practice facility on Tulane's campus. It is located off of Ben Wiener Drive, just past the James W. Wilson Jr. Center. Parking is available for free on Friday and Saturday in the Rosen Lot, located near the corner of Claiborne Ave. and Ben Weiner Drive.

"We are pleased to again partner with Tulane to bring this outstanding college volleyball tournament to New Orleans," said Paul Hoolahan, Chief Executive Officer of the Allstate Sugar Bowl. "The school does an excellent job with the event and has helped make this a point of pride among the 25-plus community-related sporting events the Bowl supports each year."

The Allstate Sugar Bowl Volleyball Classic will be the first collegiate event of the organization's year-long repertoire of events, which will be highlighted by the 79th annual Allstate Sugar Bowl Classic on Wednesday, Jan. 2 at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. In addition, the bowl is part of the local organizing committee for the 2013 NCAA Women's Final Four, another Superdome event scheduled for April 7 and April 9. Through hosting and sponsorships, the Allstate Sugar Bowl supports and honors over 13,000 student-athletes each year.

After picking up their first victory of the season on Friday night to open the Lamar Invitational, the Green Wave dropped their next two matches to finish 1-2 on the weekend. This will mark fifth straight season - tenth time in the past 12 years - that the Olive and Blue will host the Allstate Sugar Bowl Collegiate Classic. Tulane has three titles and only Sam Houston State has appeared in the event, going 0-3 during the 2010 season.

Cori Martone is closing in on 100 kills for the season, entering the weekend with 89, and with 740 kills she is looking to become just the 15th player in Tulane history to break the 800-kill mark. She currently ranks 18th all-time and is 16 kills away from Tina Prima at 17 and just 22 kills from Erin Dobyanski in 16th. The junior currently ranks sixth in kills per set (3.71) and seventh in points per set (4.17) in Conference USA.

Last weekend, Mel Mandelbaum earned all-tournament team honors at the Lamar Invitational after handing out 6.67 assists per-set - 80 total in three matches - to go along with 27 digs. Mandelbaum handed out 27 assists and boasted eight digs in the tournament finale, while opening the tournament with a double-double of 35 assists and 14 digs. The junior moved into seventh on the all-time list in from of Cappy Meyer's 1,740 assists and is closing in on the 1,800-assist mark, entering the weekend with 1,776.

Azarri Badawi ranks second on the squad with 65 digs, but her 3.42 digs per set average paces all Green Wave players and ranks tenth in C-USA. Martone paces all Tulane players with 73 digs, while Grace Weaver has added 64 digs.

Mississippi State won its first two matches of the season, but has been shutout since then and enters the weekend with a 2-4 overall mark. Last weekend, the Bulldogs dropped a four-setter to Boston College to open the Trojan Invitational before suffering straight-set losses to #23 Northern Iowa and #5 USC. The freshman duo of Sarah Nielsen and Taylor Scott has been the two main options for the Maroon and White. Scott paces the squad with 79 kills, adding 68 digs, while Nielsen is the most efficient attacker on the squad at .305 with 60 kills. Paris Perret is the quarterback of the offense with 198 assists, while libero Roxanne McVey is tops with 138 digs.

Pittsburgh moved their winning streak to four games with a three-set victory over Cleveland State on Tuesday evening and are now 5-2 overall on the season. The Panthers only two losses came to nationally ranked foes when they fell to #21 Northern Iowa and #9 Purdue at the Mortar Board Premier in West Lafayette, Ind. The attack is paced by senior Jasmine Dittrich and sophomore Jessica Wynn, while sophomore setter Lindsey Zitzke has handed out 210 of the team's 254 assists. Dittrich leads the team with 48 kills and tops the blocks charts with 23 stuffs. Wynn has totaled 41 kills to rank second on the team, while Alexa Campbell is top all-around player with 33 kills 53 digs. Senior Margy Action captains the defense with 90 digs, while sophomore Delaney Clesen has 53 digs as a defensive specialist.

San Houston State enters the weekend with a 3-5 overall mark after dropping a three set decision at Rice on Tuesday. The Bearkats posted wins over Louisiana Lafayette and Texas Southern to open the season, but have lost five of their last six matches, with the lone win coming against Nebraska-Omaha. Devene Wells-Gibson and Kendall Cleveland are atop the attacking charts for SHSU with 116 and 90 kills, respectively. Wells-Gibson is third on the squad with 98 digs, while senior Jamie Hass leads the team with 122. Tayler Gray is second on the team with 118 digs, while leading the squad with 311 assists.

The Sugar Bowl Committee continues to be very active in the New Orleans community by holding fast to its mission of sponsoring and promoting amateur sporting events which foster revenue and spark economic growth for the city and the state.  This year the Bowl will support more than 25 events in sports such as volleyball, baseball, basketball, golf, lacrosse, sailing, track and field, soccer and tennis, as well as football.  In addition, the Allstate Sugar Bowl sponsors the local chapter of the National Football Foundation and College Hall of Fame as well as the Greater New Orleans Sports Hall of Fame.

-AllstateSugarBowl.org-