Xavier Athletics



Erin Vincent

Erin Vincent

     XU returns to face Belhaven, Alabama State
August 27, 2010

Prematch notes (PDF file)

     NEW ORLEANS — As soon as Erin Vincent learned that Xavier University of Louisiana again would sponsor intercollegiate women's volleyball, she made immediate plans to be part of the rebirth.
     "There was no hesitation," said Vincent, a senior outside hitter from The Woodlands, Texas. "I knew I was going to try out for the team."
     She and classmate Celeste Poe, who in February informed Vincent of the return of volleyball, started working out at The Barn to prepare for an April campus tryout. They eventually were among five Xavier students Coach Al'lisa Hale selected for the team.
     The Gold Nuggets — whose 2005 season was wiped out before it started by Hurricane Katrina and whose program remained suspended an additional four seasons — will open their 2010 season Saturday at The Barn with matches against Belhaven at 1 p.m. and Alabama State at 5 p.m. Sandwiched between those contests will be a Belhaven-Alabama State match at 3 p.m. Admission will be free for all Xavier home volleyball matches this season.
     "Volleyball was the thing I had the most fun with in life," said Vincent, a senior biology/pre-medical major with a 3.4 grade-point average. "(Xavier volleyball) has been the best thing for me."
     Hale, an assistant at Alabama State the past three seasons, will make her debut as a collegiate head coach with 11 players.
     "I won't be nervous," Hale said. "Volleyball is what I breathe. I want this to be about our girls. I want them to show their full potential. I want them to be themselves and be confident and play hard."
     Xavier announced in late November it again would sponsor volleyball, but Sierra Lyons had the university on her radar for several years.
     "(Xavier) Coach (Bo) Browder had known about me in basketball since seventh grade," said Lyons, an outside hitter/middle blocker from Houma, La., and a Division I All-State player for Terrebonne High School a year ago. "He had said there was a chance volleyball would come back by the time I was in college. And I was interested in the biology program. Xavier is the best place for it."
     Lyons, the Nuggets' tallest player at 6-feet-1, said she chose Xavier over Louisiana-Lafayette, Southern and Texas Southern. She will play only volleyball this season.
     The Nuggets officially were introduced Friday at a lunchtime campus pep rally and cookout.
     Xavier will play seven of its 11 home matches in the first 19 days of the season. This will be XU's third season of intercollegiate volleyball. The Nuggets were 9-24 in 2003 in their debut season, then 10-23 the following year.
     "Our chemistry is the best part of this team," Lyons said. "We're already a close-knit team."


Gulf Coast Athletic Conference
National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics

The Xavier Gold Rush and Gold Nuggets compete in Division I of the NAIA (National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics) as a member of the Gulf Coast Athletic Conference (GCAC). Xavier fields men's teams in basketball, cross country and tennis and women's teams in basketball, cross country, tennis and volleyball.

Department of Intercollegiate Athletics
Xavier University of Louisiana
1 Drexel Drive
Campus Box 92
New Orleans, LA 70125
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(504) 520-7934 fax

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