NAU volleyball concludes home schedule; Thursday game on FOX Sports Arizona

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. — The Northern Arizona volleyball team concludes its 2014 home schedule with a pair of games this week against Eastern Washington on Thursday and Southern Utah on Saturday. Thursday’s game will be televised live on FOX Sports Arizona, starting at 7 p.m.

NAU (17-6, 8-4) enters the week in fourth place in the Big Sky Conference. Eastern Washington (9-16 overall) and Southern Utah (13-11) have identical 5-7 records in conference play.

The Lumberjacks split a pair of matches last week, losing to Big Sky-leading Idaho State in five sets before bouncing back with a win over Weber State.

The Lumberjacks have three players in the top-10 of the Big Sky in hitting percentage: senior Taylor Stephens (.338, second), junior Payton Bock (.328, fourth) and senior Sydney Kemper (.323, sixth). The trio are also in the top-10 of the conference in blocks: Bock (1.30, third), Stephens (1.02, ninth) and Kemper (1.00, 10th). Kemper topped the 1,000 mark for career kills in last week’s loss to Idaho State.

"We know we have two really good opponents coming in and have great challenges ahead of us," NAU coach Ken Murphy said. "We want to make sure this is another week we can improve as we get closer to the conference tournament so we’re playing our best when that time comes."