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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

Arizona Volleyball’s Magill a better blocker

Amy+Phelps+%2F+The+Daily+Wildcat%0A%0AOlivia+Magill+spikes+the+ball+against+Colorado+on+Sunday+at+the+McKale+Center.++
Amy Phelps
Amy Phelps / The Daily Wildcat Olivia Magill spikes the ball against Colorado on Sunday at the McKale Center.

Arizona indoor volleyball sophomore Olivia Magill doesn’t get much playing time, but that hasn’t kept her from making an impact.

The 6-foot-2 middle blocker leads the team in blocking with 103 blocks for the season so far.

“There’s different ways to motivate her. She hates not playing,” said head coach Dave Rubio. “Maybe that’s the best way.”

Last season she finished with 104 blocks and received Pac-12 All-Freshman honorable mention honors for also leading the Wildcats in blocks.

“I’ve improved my blocking over the year and that makes me really happy,” Magill said. “I know during the spring we worked on blocking a lot and I feel like I have really improved.”

Magill is one of the top three scorers, as she has recorded 230.5.

Rubio said Magill had some blocking improvement to do last week when the Wildcats hosted Utah and Colorado.

Magill didn’t get much playing time during the match against Utah on Thursday night. Then when she stepped on to the court Sunday afternoon while hosting Colorado, she recorded a match-high 14.5 points.

“We get a lot of offense out of Olivia; she’s certainly a threat to score all the time,” Rubio said. “I like her composure. … She’s really aggressive; she’s a big-time athlete. If we’re going to shoot for the stars, she’s somebody who has to be on the court for us.”

Magill said she has concentrated on her defensive skills of late.

“Against Colorado, I just really focused on my blocking,” Magill said.

Junior outside hitter Madi Kingdon said Magill’s performance on Sunday was one of the best ones she’s seen.

“I think she did a great job tonight,” Kingdon said after Sunday’s match. “Blocking- and hitting-wise, she was really well-rounded,”

Rubio and Kingdon are not the only ones who have noticed Magill’s improvement. Magill also said she is pleased with the way her improvements have shown.

Magill recorded 144 kills last season, and she has recorded 171 this season.

“I’ve become more aggressive as I’ve gotten older and more comfortable playing in the Pac-12, so that has helped,” Magill said.

With four matches left in the regular season, Magill said she will prepare herself for competitions by paying attention to the scouting reports so she can be familiar with the other teams’ offense and defense.

“I’m really self-motivated, so every time I step on the court, I’m going to try really hard to show leadership through that,” Magill said. “I’m going to play really hard for my teammates.”

Magill and the Wildcats will face USC, UCLA, Stanford and ASU in their last four matches.

“[The teams] have just as much talent as we do, but it’s all about who comes together and plays as one,” Magill said.

— Follow Rose Aly Valenzuela @RoseAlyVal

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