Mavericks drop home opener, play two Saturday

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September 7th, 2013

Omaha, NE – The University of Nebraska at Omaha volleyball team competed in the Omaha Marriott Classic Tournament Friday.

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The game was held at the Sapp Fieldhouse on the campus of UNO. The Mavericks took on Southern Illinois University Edwardsville. The Cougars came out roaring, with 50 total attacks in the opening set. SIUE took the first set 26-24 and the second set 25-21. UNO was tied at 9-9 in the third set when things fell apart.

“It was becoming easier for them to read where we were hitting it and that happens when you are under pressure and you feel your backs are against the wall,” Shires said. “You go back to showing your shots and making it easy for your opponent and that is what we did tonight, we made it easy for our opponent.”

UNO was held to a meager .031 attack percentage in the final set. Meanwhile the Cougars were feasting, hitting .414 and downed UNO in the final set 25-13 and captured the match, three sets to nothing. Sophomore outside hitter Kelly Wollak led UNO in total attempts with 31 and digs with 13, but she said she would like to see the team use their judgment better when choosing shots.

“I think personally what I want to try is using my shots and being a lot smarter of a hitter,” Wollak said. “I thought we were giving really good solid contacts but erring in the wrong times and not being as smart and intelligent as we are, as hitters.”

Shires said the team has the rest of the season ahead of them and shouldn’t be down on themselves for their performance. She said she knows the team is getting better they just need to show it.

“What we take from it is honestly we have to get out here and trust our practice and trust our training and play relaxed. And not get so uptight when a team scores one or two points on us and (we) feel like we have to be perfect as freshman and sophomores on the floor. Its continually fluid in practice (but) not always in games and so we have to make that connection.”

Wollak didn’t avoid the issue when asked about how UNO stops the bleeding when pressed by opposing teams.

“We are growing up, we are a young team and these are the things we need to learn is to push back when you are getting shoved around the play yard.”

UNO will play two games Saturday.

First at 11am against Southern Utah, then at 5pm the Mavs face-off against Missouri Valley foe Bradley.

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