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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


Rubio unhappy with Wildcats practice play

Colin Prenger/Arizona Daily Wildcat Dave Rubio, coach of the UA volleyball team, instructs during practice on Aug. 29, 2012.

The Arizona volleyball team is almost two weeks into its season and currently sits at a 3-2 record overall. The team has shown flashes of talent, but head coach Dave Rubio has been disappointed with the team’s play during practices. The team is having trouble putting in the energy necessary to work hard not only during games but also in every practice and every play.

“Coach Rubio is a little stressed out,” sophomore middle blocker Rachel Rhoades said. “You can tell he’s frustrated, mainly just by the youth of the team, and I hate that that’s still an excuse.”

Rubio doesn’t believe his team is in shape to depend on a single player to carry the team, so the Wildcats’ lineups have been constantly changing.

On Tuesday, Rubio ended practice early, frustrated with the team’s lack of energy and effort.

“I look at my team and I see we have wonderful, high-level potential,” Rubio said. “But potential is one thing, and developing and becoming the player and team they’re capable of becoming are two different things.”

The Wildcats will play their first Pac-12 game against UC Irvine on Sept. 14 at home. The Wildcats have several home games this season, including the Arizona Invitational, which begins this Friday and continues into Saturday. Rubio is hopeful that the team will continue to improve every week, but with shortcomings in practice, the squad still has a lot of work to do.

“I think we just have a lot of work to still do … our freshmen just kind of need to get up to speed,” sophomore outside hitter Madi Kingdon said. “We just have to come ready to play and not really have any hesitations.”

Rubio continues to push his players, in particular the offense. He said he needs his players to be in a position to score points and keep unforced errors at a minimum.

“I feel like he’s been a little harder on us, which I think is a really good thing,” Kingdon said. “Usually he’s really mellow and sometimes he’ll have a burst of anger, but when he’s a lot tougher on everyone it makes us all work harder.”

Rubio usually begins practice with individual skill work, a short warm up and intense game scenarios. It is during the game scenario portion of the practice that the Wildcats have been slacking of late.

“We really just need more time together, not only on the court but off the court, to bond and really get together,” Rhoades said. “That’s going to help a lot.”

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