Volleyball team seeks cohesion with seven freshmen

Kate Baxendale

The UMKC volleyball team is kicking off the season with a positive attitude. So far, the team has participated in a morale-boosting match against the Alumni on August 17th. The  Kangaroos swept the Alumni 3-0, taking the first set 25-15. In the second set, the Alumni fought back and took the lead halfway through the set. The Kangaroos came out on top,  25-20. The  Roos dominated the third set, taking a a 16-point lead, and won 25-10.

With seven freshmen on the squad , the team has a lot of work ahead to assure its cohesiveness and success.

“I have a good feeling about our team. We have been trying to catch them [the freshmen] up on what we have been learning from Coach [Christi] Posey and Coach [Trent] Jones,” said senior Emily Lucas.

Senior Brittney Robers agrees.

“We have good chemistry as a team. Our biggest challenge is that we lack experience playing together,” she said.

Both seniors agree that the newest team members have been working hard at practices in order to mesh with the veteran players.

Posey, the head coach, mirrors her players’ optimism. The Roos opened their season in Denton, Texas., last weekend and split four matches  in the North Texas Invitational.  They opened Friday with a 3-1 victory over Lamar and a 3-0 loss to host North Texas, then finished up Saturday with a 3-0 victory over Prairie View A&M and a 3-0 loss to Houston Baptist.

“It’s very exciting,” Posey said before the tournament. “We get a chance to play somebody else instead of playing against each other in practice. We want to see how we measure up to other teams.”

Posey expressed confidence in her new players, saying that each student athlete brings a unique skill set to the team. She believes having more than one new player is an advantage.

“There is definitely strength in numbers,” she said. “My older players are good leaders and they have helped teach the new players our core values.”

Lucas was expecting a lot from her teammates at the North Texas Invitational.

“I think there will be some good competition, but of course we want to win,” she said.

Posey said the goal for the team is to win matches, but her bigger goal is to see how good the team can become. Once the team returns to Kansas City, it will travel to Laramie, Wyo., for the UniWyo Cowgirl Classic. There they will face Bethune-Cookman and Florida Gulf Coast on Aug. 31 and George Washington and Wyoming on Sept. 1.

After playing KU Sept. 4 at Kansas, the Roos will hit the road again Sept. 7-8 to participate in the Runnin’ Bulldog Classic in Boiling Spring, N.C. There, the Kangaroos will face Charlotte, Gardner-Webb and Delaware State. UMKC begins Summit League play Sept. 14-15 when the team will travel to IUPUI and Western Illinois. The home opener against Oakland will be Sept. 21 at Swinney Recreation Center.

 

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