PEORIA, Ill. -- The Bradley volleyball team looks to continue its hot play after going 3-0 at last week's North Carolina Central Invitational, heading north to Milwaukee, Wis., for the Panther Invitational Friday and Saturday. The Braves open tournament play against defending Horizon League champion and tournament-host Wisconsin-Milwaukee Friday at 1:30 p.m.
The opening weekend saw Bradley sweep Elon and defending Big South Conference regular-season co-champion Winthrop in addition to topping tournament-host North Carolina Central as the Braves opened a season with three consecutive wins away from home for the first time since 1983.
In addition to Friday's matchup with Wisconsin-Milwaukee (2-1 overall), BU will also face East Carolina (1-2 overall) and 2011 NCAA Tournament participant Western Michigan (1-2 overall) during the Panther Invitational. BradleyBraves.com will provide links to live stats and free video streams of all three Bradley matches in the Panther Invitational. Saturday's action includes an 11 a.m. match against East Carolina and the Braves wrap up play Saturday at 4:30 p.m. against Western Michigan.
Bradley hit .336 as a team during the opening weekend, hitting better than .400 in each of the first two matches of the season. BU had not had a hitting percentage better than .300 in back-to-back matches since 2002 and Friday's .456 attack percentage against Elon was the team's best effort since at least the 1991 season. The Braves followed it up with a .429 hitting percentage in Saturday's four-set victory at North Carolina Central, to break the previous school record of .391 for hitting percentage in a four-set match set in 1986.
Along with putting its unbeaten record on the line, Bradley will also put an 11-match neutral site win streak on the line this weekend. The Braves have not started a season 4-0 since 2000 and have won six of their last seven overall dating back to last season.
Junior Amy Angelos (Waukegan, Ill./Waukegan) earned all-tournament honors at the North Carolina Central Invite, after pacing Bradley in kills in two of three matches. She averaged 3.20 kills, 0.40 aces and 0.60 blocks per set while hitting .500 in the three contests to help lead the Braves.
Fellow junior Alise Tupuritis (Des Plaines, Ill./Maine West) also got off to a strong start to the year, averaging 3.60 kills per set during the opening weekend. Tupuritis matched a career-high with 18 kills against North Carolina Central and boasts a .400 hitting percentage heading into the weekend.
The trip to Milwaukee, Wis., is Bradley's first to the Badger State since playing in the Panther Classic in Milwaukee, Wis., during the 2007 season.
The Braves wrap up a season-long six-match road swing Saturday afternoon against Western Michigan, before facing Saint Louis Tuesday, Sept. 4 (7 p.m.) in the team's home opener. Beginning with Tuesday's contest against the Billikens, BU will play 10 of the next 16 matches at Renaissance Coliseum.