The U.N.I. volleyball team heads back on the road today as the Panthers travel to California to take part in a tournament at U.S.C. U.N.I. will play fifteen of their first sixteen matches away from Cedar Falls, with a third of those coming against teams ranked in the nation’s top 25.
One of those matches will be against Southern Cal, who U.N.I. coach Bobbi Peterson says is a very powerful squad. They were ranked 5th last week and may be moving up in the rankings. Peterson says they can’t outphysical U.S.C., so they have to do some other things to match up.
Peterson says that one part of the game that is usually tougher on the road is serving. She says feeling comfortable with your serve is the hardest thing to do in a different facility, and they will have to figure out how to do that.
While the Panthers only graduated two seniors off of last year’s team, Peterson says it’s more like they’re replacing four players due to some position changes. “People we have returning we are putting in different positions,” she explains.
The Panthers face both U.S.C. and Boston College on Friday before meeting Mississippi State on Saturday. Their first home matchup will be September 11 against Northern Illinois.
By Jesse Gavin KCNZ Cedar Falls