Aug. 19, 2014
Junior Alyssa Ivey returns for her second season at Auburn (Auburn Athletics photo)
With the 2014 volleyball season around the corner, AuburnTigers.com takes a look at each spot on the floor. The second installment takes a look at the Tigers' battle for the setter position.
AUBURN, Ala. - Auburn makes the transition to the 5-1 offense for the 2014 season and two players - Alyssa Ivey and Alexa Filley - are vying for the role to be the distributor in the Tigers' system.
Ivey returns for her second season at Auburn after appearing in 24 matches during the 2013 campaig n. Ivey ranked second on the squad behind former Tiger Chelsea Wintzinger with 383 assists (4.91 per set). The Franklin, Tenn., native also posted a season-high 26 assists in Auburn's historic 3-1 win over No. 10 Nebraska and topped the 20-assist mark seven times during the season.
"Last year, we ran a 6-2 and she played from the back row only. I suspect that will change this season, but (Alyssa) has played from the front row during her entire career," Auburn head coach Rick Nold said of the junior. "It's something that I think she is ready for; she's a very good athlete that's quick and plays great defense. During the spring she was a leader for us on the floor."
Ivey provides the Tigers with a versatile presence on the floor, recording 125 digs during the 2013 season.
Highly-touted signee Alexa Filley looks to play a factor in getting the ball to Auburn's hitters. Filley, the reigning Gatorade National Player of the Year, enters her freshman season with the opportunity to make an immediate impact for the Tigers.
"Alexa has a lot of accolades coming in as a freshman and they are all well-deserved," Nold said. "She brings a very well-rounded game. She's a good defender, a good blocker and can attack from the front. Throughout her career, she's played against some of the top talent in club and high school volleyball which we think is beneficial to her making an early impact for us on the court."
Alexa Filley practicing during preseason camp (Zach Bland photo)
Filley led Assumption High School in Louisville, Ky., to four straight state titles during her career, winning state tournament MVP honors in 2012 and 2013. She was also named a second-team All-American selection by USA Today after posting 1,238 assists and 332 digs during her senior season.
Both players will look to replace Wintzinger, who became one of four setters in school history to eclipse the 2,500-assist mark, finishing with 2,654 career assists for her four-year career. Wintzinger also made a major impact at the service line, setting the single-season record with 35 aces in 2013.
"Both Alexa and Alyssa are working well together in practice and supporting one another. We want to find out as soon as we can who will fill that role for us," Nold said.
Up next: Auburn has strength in numbers at middle blocker
For the latest updates on Auburn Volleyball, follow the Tigers on Twitter, @AuburnVB or like Auburn Volleyball on Facebook.