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Free T-Shirt For First 500 Fans Thursday

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Thursday evening will be a night of firsts when the Arkansas Tech Golden Suns host the Henderson State Lady Reddies in volleyball action at Tucker Coliseum.

First serve is scheduled for 7 p.m. No admission will be charged.

It will be the first Great American Conference athletics event ever played on the Arkansas Tech campus. Tech, HSU and seven other charter members are participating in the inaugural season for the new NCAA Division II league in 2011-12.

Thursday night will also mark the first athletic competition on the new permanent hardwood floor at Tucker Coliseum. The new playing surface was installed over the summer as a replacement for the temporary hardwood floor used for Tech home basketball games and volleyball matches for the past decade.

To mark the special occasions, the first 500 fans through the doors at Tucker Coliseum on Thursday night will receive a free commemorative T-shirt. The T-shirt is modeled in the photo at right by Arkansas Tech volleyball players Kaitlyn White, Sierra Nighswonger and Lindsey Layes.

The Golden Suns (8-1 overall, 1-0 GAC) have won eight consecutive matches, including a four-set win over Ouachita Baptist in the GAC opener Tuesday night in Arkadelphia.

Arkansas Tech head coach Kristy Bayer said before the season started that she wanted her team to be balanced offensively this year, and so far the Golden Suns have been able to attain that goal.

Returning all-region and all-conference performer Laura Farney leads the team with 106 kills, but Sara Motsinger (97 kills), Kelly O'Malley (84 kills) and Thabata Galvao (57 kills) have helped make the Arkansas Tech attack more diverse.

Henderson State (2-8, 0-1) dropped its GAC opener to Harding in straight sets on Tuesday night.

The Lady Reddies' top player is Ty Lindberg, a transfer from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock who leads the GAC in kills per set (4.09).

Click here to learn more about Arkansas Tech volleyball.

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