The Maroon

Volleyball receives national recognition

The volleyball team huddles together before its first home game against Spring Hill. The team is now 12-3 after starting the season undefeated.

ERIC BURAS/STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER

The volleyball team huddles together before its first home game against Spring Hill. The team is now 12-3 after starting the season undefeated.

HASANI GRAYSON

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After a quick 8-0 start, Wolf Pack volleyball’s performance in recent games has the team looking for ways to improve.

The early season wins earned the Pack six votes in the NAIA top 25 coaches poll on Sept. 11. But the team has gone just 1-3 since then, and Head Coach Tommy Harold thinks the team needs to refocus.

“I think they all need to step up and make plays,” Harold said before the home opening loss to Spring Hill. “I don’t know that anybody’s played to their level yet. I think it’s still a process.”

Senior outside hitter and marketing major Kailey Tuthill said that the team was excited to receive votes in last week’s poll but that it didn’t distract them from their main goals.

“We definitely got excited when we saw it, but we didn’t want to get out of the mindset that we still needed to keep pushing,” Tuthill said.

Tuthill also mentioned that their three-set loss to Brenau highlighted some of the things the team needs to work on going forward.

“Brenau came out strong and we needed to work better as a team and not as individual players,” Tuthill said. “We have to learn that this is a new team, there’re a lot of freshmen and we need to learn how to play together.”

After losing three straight sets to Brenau, the Pack bounced back with a three set victory over conference opponent Truett McConnell. Harold said that after facing Brenau, the task against the upstart Truett McConnell wasn’t as tough.

“Truett McConnell was a first year program who we handled pretty easily,” Harold said. “It was a nice match, everybody got to play. We weren’t pushed too hard.”

After early success turned into an early season slump, some players may have become discouraged. However, political science junior

and safety Sam Worsham thinks that this team can be dominant once they make adjustments.

“Our team right now has so much potential it scares me,” Worsham said.

She also added that it’s important for all the new players to adjust to Harold’s unique coaching style in order to ensure everyone’s on the same page.

With a road game against Bellhaven on Sept. 25 followed by a long five-game home stand, Harold doesn’t want to try to predict where the team will be by season’s end.

“I don’t think we ever talk about national championships. I think we talk about improvement,” Harold said. “That’s what our goal is every year. I don’t think you can gooutandsay’wewanttowina championship.’ I think you need to work on improving day-to-day.”

Hasani Grayson can be reached at [email protected]

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Volleyball receives national recognition