Volleyball beats EKU, earns most victories since 2008

The 2013 season came to an end for the volleyball team last weekend when the Racers won their final game of the season against Eastern Kentucky.

Alyssa Lelm, sophomore middle blocker for the Racers, said the team could not have ended the season on a better note.

“I think we had the mentality that we had nothing to lose,” Lelm said. “We knew we were out of the (OVC) tournament. We wanted to go out with a win, and send our senior home with a last win.”

With lone senior and team captain Katlyn Hudson’s volleyball career at an end, the Racers will need a new captain to lead the team. Head Coach David Schwepker said he already has a replacement in mind, but is not making a decision quite yet.

“This spring is going to tell us who is going to step up and be the leader of this team,” Schwepker said.

Although the Racers are done with regular season play, it does not mean they have a break for the spring. Schwepker said spring season gets really tough for the team.

“It’s tougher physically than in the fall,” Schwepker said. “They work with our strength coach. He really gets them into shape.”

Despite the tough season ahead, sophomore setter Sam Bedard said she is ready to get to work.

Ending their season just one game shy of an OVC tournament berth, the Racers were left with disappointment. Bedard said she is not letting the setback get in the way of her goal of winning the OVC tournament one day.

“I was disappointed, but the only thing I can say now is I can’t wait until next year because we are going to be in the tournament,” Bedard said.

Both Bedard and Lelm are looking forward to next year’s season. Lelm said the team already has an advantage.

“A plus is that we only lose one senior and we’ve already gained three girls so far for this incoming freshmen class,” Lelm said. “I think we’re going to do great things next year.”

Schwepker said what brought the Racers down this season was having such a young team out on the floor.

However, he agreed with Lelm and said next year will be much different than this year.

“The things that we talked about being the negatives, are going to be the positives,” Schwepker said. “I think we are going to see them mature, and I think they are going to have that confidence in themselves.”

The Racers have already finished recruiting new players for next season.

Schwepker said he thinks next year’s team will be unstoppable.

“I will be very disappointed if we don’t finish in the top of the conference,” he said. “I think we will have a really good shot at winning the conference tournament.”

Schwepker said he already sees the team’s determination for a winning season next year.

Said Schwepker: “They want to win so bad next year that they are willing to do whatever to get there.”

 

Story by Taylor Crum, Staff writer