A few months ago it was announced that the volleyball team would go through the spring practice season with 7 players while Destinee, Juliann and Pao skipped the spring semester to train with the Olympic team. Needless to say, I was not optimistic about how we would do in the games. The good news is we managed an 8-1 record for the spring.
The schedule was not terribly challenging. Of the 9 teams we played this spring about a third made the NCAA tournament last fall. That being said, when you remove 3 All Americans from your lineup and are playing with only 2 starters a weak schedule does not guarantee wins.
Most of our "matches" were best 2 of 3 except for the Tulane game which was played in Austin and 5 games were played.
At Texas State, we beat all four teams in two games (games were played to 25 which is new for 2008). The most competitive match was against Texas State. They had most everyone back playing spring ball that played during their NCAA appearance in Austin. Texas State led most of the way during both games but Texas came back to win both. They demolished Lamar, Houston and St Edwards in all the game 1's. Lamar actually made a really good game of it in Game 2 holding a very late lead, but Texas clamped down and won.
Texas hosted Tulane two weeks ago. The teams played 5 games (4 to 24 and 1 to 15). Texas won games 1-3 and game 5 and Tulane won game 4.
Texas played in Houston this past weekend at the Texas Tornados facility in Cypress. Texas beat Arkansas and Notre Dame 2-1, swept SMU and lost to New Mexico State in 3.
NOTE: Tulane also played in Houston and beat USC!
Ashley handled setting duties and Heather played libero. Chelsey and Kiley were our OHs. Alex Lewis played DS and Jen Doris and Elizabeth Graham rotated back n forth playing both middle blocker positions and right side on the front line. We were quite challenged without our 6'2" and 6'4" OHs. Especially at the Tornados' event, teams were setting everything to the right side to take advantage of Kiley and Chelsey's smaller block. I have to admit I have reservations about Ashley setting, mostly because I like the offensive firepower she brings from playing the right side. However, by this last weekend she has won me over and she should be our setter this fall. Having every one of our offensive plays go through Ashley is a good thing! She was often the unsung hero when she played right side. When she sets, you really get to see what this girl is capable of on the court. She is a nightmare for blockers as they have no idea if she'll hit or set. And she knows when a defense is out of place and uses the dumps far more than Michelle.
I am very optimistic for the fall. Spring is not over yet, the girls go to San Diego in a few weeks for beach volleyball.
They also released the fall schedule:
In addition, Texas signed a 6'3" middle blocker from San Antonio this past week. She is coached in high school by Longhorn Legend, Demetria Sance.