Sports | Volleyball

Volleyball hosts Cornell, looks for strong end to season

  • Youjin Jenny Jang for Spectator
    sliding setter | Volleyball, led by senior Colleen Brennan, will look to reach .500 in Ivy play against the struggling Big Red, which is 2-5 in Ivy play.

The volleyball team (5-11, 3-4 Ivy) will look to get to .500 in Ivy play this weekend as it hosts Cornell (6-11, 2-5 Ivy).

Given the team’s youth, head coach Jon Wilson is hopeful the Light Blue will begin to play up to its full potential going forward.

“What we can expect will happen is, as long as we continue to work hard, that the youngness of this team has the potential to get a lot better this second half because they’ve been around the league once,” Wilson said. “They’ve gotten experience in important matches, and it’s going to be the same people, basically, that finished the first half of the season that are going to be out there all the time in the second half.” 

Senior captain Colleen Brennan said that the team is starting to form chemistry.

“Over the past few weekends, I think we’ve gotten our flow and that continuity that you’re looking for—especially with a younger team,” Brennan said. “It’s tough when you have so many newcomers coming in just to gel. Everyone has been doing such a great job.”

While each team in the Ancient Eight has played through the league once this season, the focus for the Lions remains on their own side of the court.

“You obviously are going to get a little tighter of a game plan from the other team the second time around,” Wilson said. “And we also dial in a little more. But we never change the philosophy that we have to emphasize—that 80 percent of our effort, minimum, has to go into our game, and playing it well, and getting better at what we do. Only 10 to 20 percent of what we do can be invested into what the opponent does.”

One area of the team’s game that has seemed to improve is net play, especially from the middles.

“I think our blocking, especially this weekend, has just improved,” Brennan said. “The middles have done a great job of getting up there for the setters, and that gives up options. We have to use the middle and the options and that we’re pressing on the block.” 

Starting with the game against Cornell, the Lions are looking to put together a nice run to end the season.

“For these upcoming weeks we’re looking for progress—that’s coming together more—and just finishing,” Brennan said. “You just want to finish the season strong, just like you started it. We’re excited.”

The Light Blue hosts Cornell on Saturday at 2 p.m. in Levien Gymnasium.

sports@columbiaspectator.com | @CUSpecSports

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