After a disappointing loss at Western Michigan Sunday, the USF volleyball team let all its opponents know Tuesday that it is as strong as ever. The Bulls beat the Rattlers of Florida A&M three straight games (30-24, 30-19, 30-27) giving the team an 11-4 record.
The middle blockers played a large role in TuesdayÃs victory making 11 total blocks in three games.
Ã¬The last two weeks, we have been working on blocking,Ã® said USF coach Nancy Mueller.
According to Mueller, blocking allowed USF to slow down the opposing teamÃs offense and take control of the game. Jobes was TuesdayÃs leading blocker, having her hand in six blocks, and making Mueller jump out of her seat with joy when she made a block that fired up the team in the midst of a slump. That play came at the end of Game 3 when the Bulls were down 24-21.
After an 8-0 rally, USF won the third game 30-27, its closest game of the night.
The Bulls beat the Rattlers in Game 1 30-24, after taking the lead at 10-9 and staying there. In Game 2, USF led the whole game, only allowing A&M to come within four points of them, before going on a 7-0 rally to end the game 30-19. USF showed its mettle in Game 3 by coming back from a 20-24 score.
With a 4-2 record coming into the game, Florida A&M might have seemed like an easy win, but the team took it as a serious match, especially since the Rattlers beat 9-3 Louisville, the preseason pick for Conference USA champion.
Ã¬We came out on a mission, knowing that this team was going to be a challenge and that the match could not be taken lightly,Ã® said Mueller.
According to Jobes, the team had a great practice this week, and worked hard on its blocking, which was highly visible in TuesdayÃs match. This week in practice, Mueller stressed aggressive play. They continued the powerful serving they have been showing of late, nailing six aces in TuesdayÃs game, surpassing their 1.96 average. USF is second in aces in C-USA.
Conference play takes place in two weeks, and the team is going to take it Ã¬one game at a time,Ã® stresses Mueller, who has high goals for her team but realizes the challenge of conference play.
USF was picked to finish third in the C-USA preseason coachesÃ poll.
Contact Chris Wagenheim at firstname.lastname@example.org