Trojans remain undefeated in SBC, Lauer wins 100th match

Published 9:03 am Monday, October 9, 2023

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The Troy Trojans volleyball team (8-8, 6-0) swept the Marshall Thundering Herd this weekend to remain undefeated in Sun Belt Conference play, while Head Coach Josh Lauer earned his 100th victory in the process.

In game one, Troy swept Marshall 3-0, taking all three sets 25-20, 25-23 and 25-19. Tori Hester led the Trojans with 13 kills, four aces, three blocks and seven digs, while Amiah Butler added 12 kills and two blocks. Julia Brooks chipped in with 11 kills and two blocks, while Janelle Stuempfig dished 31 assists and 12 digs.

The Trojans completed the series sweep with a 3-1 win over Marshall on Saturday. Troy won the first set 25-21 before Marshall tied things up in the second set 25-21. Troy then won the third and fourth set 25-12 and 25-22 to capture the match.

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Brooks led the way for Troy with 19 kills and five blocks, while Hester added 14 kills, two aces, two blocks and 12 digs. Butler also earned 11 kills, three blocks and four digs. Audrey Worthington chipped in with nine kills and three blocks. Stuempfig earned 46 assists and six digs, while Caroline Darracott tallied three ace in the win.

“Great team win today. Marshall played with a lot of competitive effort today and we responded well to the challenge,” Lauer said after the sweep. “Julia was our rock today and we got stronger as a team after the second set. I’m proud of our group. They have been very focused and determined from the start of the season and continue to believe, stay humble and hungry.”

Lauer joined former Troy coaches Sonny Kirkpatrick and Ginger Lowe as the only Trojan volleyball coaches to reach 100 career wins.

“I have been very fortunate to have very committed players and I’m very grateful for their belief and effort over the years,” Lauer said. “I’m also very thankful for (assistant coach) Brian Muesenfechter’s loyalty and knowledge. These wins are as much his as they are mine and the players we have been blessed to coach over the years.

“Lastly, I want to say, ‘Thank you,’ to my wife, Deb, who has been the support and rock of our family throughout our coaching journey.”

After Troy started the season with eight straight road matches – and a 1-7 record during that stretch – the Trojans have gone 7-1 in the next eight matches with seven straight wins. Troy currently sits tied for first place in the Sun Belt West with rival South Alabama as both schools sit at 6-0 in conference play. The Trojans return home this weekend for a conference series against Arkansas State on Oct. 13 at 6 p.m. and Oct. 14 at 2 p.m. Follow those two matches Troy will be on the road for the next four.