Can the Eagles defeat the Goliath Mountaineers?

Jordan Toney

The last time the Georgia Southern Eagles won a volleyball game was Nov. 24, 2013. It’s been 298 days, 7,152 hours, and 429,120 minutes since the Eagles have had a W next to their name for volleyball. This Friday at Statesboro High School, the winless Eagles are going to be going up against the red hot undefeated Appalachian State Mountaineers.

Currently, the Eagles are the only team in the Sun Belt Conference without a win, but the Mountaineers are only one of two undefeated teams in the conference. The only other undefeated team is UL Lafayette who has a record of 10-0, only one win less than the 11-0 Mountaineers.

Jamie Deratt currently leads the Eagles in kills with 95, averaging just under three kills per set. Emily Corrigan, on the other hand, leads the Mountaineers in kills with 195, averaging just under five and a half kills per set.

The comparisons don’t get any better if you move on from individual statistics to team statistics either. App. State, as a team, has an attack percentage of 27.1. That is practically doubling Ga. Southern’s attack percentage of 13.4. The Mountaineers are also outscoring their opponents in the first set, 269-206. The Eagles are getting outscored in that same set 214-192.

What does this mean for the Eagles? It means that if Ga. Southern doesn’t want to break the two game win streak it has against App. State, it’s going to have to fight hard. Winless teams going up undefeated teams is always a David vs. Goliath type battle, and this one is no different. App. State beats Ga. Southern in almost every statistic, and to most outsiders looking in, they would predict this game being a shutout.

But things aren’t all bad for the Eagles, and there are several reasons why they could pull off the win and give the long-time rival their first loss of the season. First, home field advantage is a thing and it’s a thing the Eagles pull off well. Last season, the Eagles went 13-2 when playing in Statesboro. During that same season, the Mountaineers only went 6-5 on the road.

Another thing to consider is that the Eagles typically do well against the Mountaineers, as I said earlier, the Eagles have won the last two straight against Appalachian State. It’s important to remember as well that in the last two years, the Eagles beat App. State on the road.

Will it be an easy win for Ga. Southern? No, and if the Eagles continuing playing the way they have been all season, then chances are they’re going to lose. Fans have to hope that something can spark the team into playing the way they did last season, but until they do that, expect more losses from the Eagles.