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The Daily Wildcat

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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    UA volleyball kicks off season

    The Arizona volleyball team will kick off its fall season this weekend in hosting the Sheraton Four Points Wildcat Classic tournament. The Wildcats will battle Weber State at 10 a.m. today then San Jose State at 7 p.m., and will finish the weekend tomorrow against Gardner-Webb at 12:30 p.m.

    Many of the Wildcats will routinely be part of at the season’s starting lineup, eager to begin the race to the top of this season’s stats chart. But for six new players, it will be their first official Arizona volleyball match.

    Kari Bardis, Danielle Holloway, Dana Hutchinson, Courtney Karst, Tori Moore, and Amy Webster are all new to the squad.

    “”The freshman are all really good people, but extremely talented as well,”” said head coach David Rubio. “”They’re kids who have played in high-level clubs, so they’re going to come in and play immediately and contribute. I haven’t had to teach too much of the game to them, just the system a little bit.””

    Unlike the typical collegiate freshman volleyball player, some of the newbies will be put under the spotlight immediately, where they will either break or shine.

    There’s no room for special treatment or leniency, in other words.

    “”I think something that sets us apart from other freshmen is that we have a lot to bring to the team right away,”” Bardis said. “”Sometimes players come in their first year and they’re not in a position to play or compete for a spot. But each of us are really pushing the upper classmen and making the team better.””

    Bardis added that colleges typically don’t see that kind of confidence and responsibility from their freshmen.

    “”We really bring it when we step on the court and we’re really competitive – all of us are,”” Webster said. “”We have a drive to play hard every time we step out there.””

    It has been established that the young teammates have great chemistry on the court – off the court is no different.

    “”We’ve gotten to know each other really well in such a short period of time,”” Karst said. “”I feel like we all have each others backs all the time.””

    The new additions to the Arizona volleyball family, without a doubt, have already strengthened its performance. This could serve as a double-edged sword for the returning players though.

    Senior Brittany Leonard said the level of competition for each starting spot has been motivation in itself for her teammates to improve on a daily basis. Her biggest inner-squad competition for game time as a libero (defensive specialist) is junior Alanna Resch.

    “”There’s so much depth in every position, that basically, if you’re not playing up to your standard you know you have a replacement,”” Leonard said. “”It definitely keeps everyone on their toes, especially since it doesn’t matter if you’re a freshman or a senior.””

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