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Sept. 11, 2000

LUBBOCK, Texas - "We played four matches last week. We played TCU Tuesday night. It was a sluggish match after last weekend being in South Carolina and all of the travel. We got some great play out of a couple of freshmen, Courtney Shambaugh and Angela Mooney. They picked things up for us in games two and three and we were able to get out of there with a three-game win, which we're always happy to do against our interstate rival."

"This weekend in the tournament, we were real happy to get a win, get things going in the new arena (United Spirit Arena). The tournament was a good situation for us. We got to get everyone in. UT-Arlington and George Mason were mid-level teams for us, but provided us with some good rallies and long play. Our starters got a couple of good matches out of that. Then against Corpus Christi we were able to play and start all of our kids who don't usually play, and they got to play a whole match. We got some really good play again out of some of our younger players. Laura Grote played a great match, as did Angela Mooney, again."

"In the tournament I thought Colleen Smith was dominating at the net. She hit .420 and had 5.3 kills per game, which is very high. If she does that all season for us we'll be in great shape. Heather Hughes came in and served and played outstanding defense. We had some good side-out hitting from Janelle Jones. We had consistency and really good defense. Sky Orzen played real well and had a great tournament."

"I was particularly happy with the George Mason match. We played consistent all the way through the match. We were on top except for right at the start. We kept the scores down and really played a good, solid match."

"This week we have Baylor on Wednesday night. Baylor is a very good team. They're led by Dana ????, their setter. She moves the ball really fast. We're going to have to do some good preparation [Monday] and [Tuesday]. Sunny and Stevie Nicholas sisters, Sunny is a middle blocker and Stevie is an outside hitter, and they're both outstanding. Those are really the three players we'll have to key on to have down there."

"This weekend we have matches at LSU against Southeastern Louisiana, Arkansas State, which was an NCAA Tournament team last year, a very good, solid, consistent team, and LSU, which is another SEC match. Those are real important for us and our conference on down the road."

"We've had a good run. I think we have a lot of confidence going into the Big 12 this week. We start the Big 12 tough. Baylor's at No. 19, next week we have Kansas State at home, they're right about the same place [as Baylor], then Texas on the road at No. 23. This week and next week will be a big test for us. I think we're ready. Confidence is as high as it's ever been. I'm certainly looking for us to get a few wins. Our team has already set a goal to be 12-0 at the end of this week, and I think we can get out and get it done."

"The conference voted to switch from a 10-week schedule to an 11-week schedule, and we had already contracted [the LSU Tournament], so it worries me a little bit. It's probably not something I would choose in the future. But actually I think it's a tournament we can got to and do well. And it's not so far away that we should be bogged down from the travel. I think it will be fun."

I think it's more balanced. There are more good teams. I don't think, outside of Nebraska right now, there is a team that's dominating right now. Last year A&M had a great year, and Texas. Right now, what we're seeing, is Texas is struggling a little bit. A&M is doing pretty good rebuilding off losing four seniors. Baylor is solid. Kansas State is solid. But we've also seen a few teams who haven't been as good. Missouri is playing really well. Oklahoma is off to a good start. There's probably only one or two matches a year, where you can go into and feel like if you show up, you're going to win. That's the hard part. I think if we can play solid and consistent, with the hitters we have, we would have a chance to move into that top two or three group [in the conference]. I particularly think Texas has left the door wide open. I think they're off to a 1-4 start. They're just struggling with ball control. They're really solid with hitting and blocking, but they're not getting the ball to the net."

"When you have to be ready every night, I think it makes you much tougher mentally, and also it teaches you how to get up and get ready to go every night out. There really isn't an easy night. You never know what's going to happen. You have to be really prepared. Emotionally we have to keep our team from getting tired on the floor, and making sure we're taking days off and not overtraining. I think it's really going to be a dogfight."

 

 

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