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The Daily Wildcat

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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    Volleyball heads to California for second weekend in a row

    The spring can be a pretty strenuous time for members of the UA volleyball team. With early morning practice sessions, classes and tournaments every weekend, the team has very little time for relaxation. for a tournament that starts tomorrow morning against Pepperdine, Cal-Poly, Cal State-Fullerton and the hosting school, UC-Santa Barbara, some Wildcats will be able to get a taste of home and comfort it brings.

    Six members of the UA team hail from California and UA head coach Dave Rubio explained that for them to return home during the offseason is a good thing.

    “”Being away from home is a good thing for growing up, but it’s also good to spend time with family, too,”” Rubio said. “”These opportunities provide a chance for you to play and see your family and I think you get to kill two birds with one stone.””

    Being in California allows some family members watch the athletes play when they wouldn’t normally be able to. In fact, at last weekend’s tournament at San Diego the team even went over for dinner at some of their teammates’ families’ homes.

    “”It’s really nice to go back home and play on familiar ground,”” said middle blocker Jacy Norton, who went to high school in Texas, Kentucky and Southern California. “”Spring is really hard and it’s a nice little breather to be able to see and play in front of family.””

    But as the Wildcats head into this weekend’s tournament, such family time may be few and far between as the team will be busy with four matches on Saturday.

    “”It’s always easier to train during the week when you know there’s a tournament in the end,”” Rubio said. “”So Saturday is like quiz day where you get to see what you achieved during the week.””

    Rubio described this week’s practice as being “”business as usual”” and that the team is just continuing to make strides to season their younger athletes and get them prepared for next year.

    “”We’re in the grind of practice right now and the intensity can get to you,”” Rubio said. “”There’s not much variety going on in people’s lives so you just kind of buckle your seat and work hard for the amount of time that we have.””

    As far as the progression the team has made in such a short amount of time, many of the players are confident in the direction the team is going.

    “”You can definitely tell how much every player on the team has improved,”” said setter Paige Weber. “”It’s really made a difference in the dynamic as a team as a whole.””

    The Wildcats will face strong teams that the team knows will make them stronger as they prepare for a rough and wild Pacific 10 Conference.

    “”Playing teams that went further than we did last year is good for us,”” Weber said. “”Because none of us are playing with our incoming freshman classes, so it’s a good sense of who has the better core of a team as it is now.””

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