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USF looks to better postseason chances

USF volleyball coach Claire Lessinger reminds her players where they stand nearly every day.

It’s all on the board.

“(The girls) are definitely aware of what’s at stake,” Lessinger said. “We keep a Big East board up there that shows records, that shows stats – that shows the race to the end – so they’re very aware of the situation.”

Attempting to strengthen their bid for a berth in the Big East Championship Tournament next month in Louisville, the Bulls (11-6,4-3), on the cutline, face Georgetown (11-13, 1-7) on Saturday at 2 p.m. and St. John’s (8-14, 1-5) on Sunday at 1 p.m.

USF is tied for seventh in the Big East, with the top eight teams qualifying for the championship tournament.

“We don’t have to spend a lot of time talking about it,” Lessinger said. “We’ve got some things, I think, in our motivation and in our team goals that visually make us aware of where we are.”

As the Bulls push for qualification this weekend, they face the team that knocked them out of the tournament last year: St. John’s.

“St. John’s is a very different team this year,” Lessinger said. “They graduated their entire
starting lineup from last year except for one girl, and although their record says they’re struggling, I’ve watched them on tape and they scare me a little bit.”

The Red Storm swept the Bulls twice last season. However, the Hoyas and the Red Storm sit near the bottom of the league. Lessinger said the team is just focused on where they stand in the tournament race, though.

The match against St. John’s resumes an Oct. 4 cancellation because of power failure at USF. The match will continue during the first set with the Bulls leading 3-1 and serving.