The Wahine’ formidable block won the match last night.
Kendra Koelsch biggest attribute is her blocking…formidable alongside the MBs. But, she need to shore-up her D-Sets to Nikki Taylor (12 kills, 9 errors, 44 attempts, .068%) and her middle-quick to Magill (8 kills, 0 errors, 21 attempts, .381%-Magill’s athleticism/hand-time allowed her to make the necessary adjustments while in the air) and Maglio were off for most of the match (4 kills, 2 errors, 12 Attempts, .167%).
I thought it was smart of coach Shoji to flip-flop Maglio (5 block assist) and Mitchem (2 kills, 0 errors, 4 attempts, .500%, 0 block assist), i.e. defense/offense.
When Tayler Higgins is fully healed, will coach Shoji re-insert her as the starting setter or will he continue with Kendra Koelsch as the starter? Definitely Kendra’s biggest attribute is blocking, and Tayler’s attributes is serving and back-row defense. The KEY: coach must decide who can best deliver the D-Set to Nikki Taylor, the Middle Quick, 31-Set and step out. When Taylor or the MHs are successful putting the ball down at a high %, then Greeley and Manu-Olevao will also be successful terminating from the outside or from the 10 foot line.
Long Beach probably played their best match of the season; but, if the D-Sets and MH’s connections were money, Manu-Olevao (12 kills, 6 errors, .182%) and Greeley’s (12 kills, 6 errors, .162%) stats would’ve had more one-on-one opportunities…the Wahine would’ve, no ifs or buts, swept Long Beach.
Redundant, but the blocking continue to be formidable, the Wahine’ passing continue to be consistent (Passers: Kahakai .966%, Greeley 963%, Manu-Olevao .946%), and the D-Sets (Nikkik Taylor) and Sets to the MHs (Magill/Maglio/Mitchem) are money, the Wahine will run the table for the remaining BWC matches--Run the table, the Wahine will be the lone BWC member going to the NCAA Tournament.
And…ditto above, no matter who they face in the sub-regional (most likely Washington or USC) the Wahine will move on to the Regionals.
And…my Rankings for this week: USC, Washington, Texas, Hawaii, Penn State, Nebraska, Ohio State, Stanford, UCLA, Wisconsin. Kansas is 17-0, but so far have played a cream-puff schedule…their match with Texas will determine if they are legitimate. Unless their big gun return (Gardner), Arizona State will continue to move down in the polls.
And…at this point of the season, it looks like the FINAL FOUR will be: Penn State (who will again have the easiest road to the final four), Texas, either Washington or USC, and Hawaii. IMHO Washington, USC, and Hawaii will have the toughest-road-to-hoe by the NCAA Selection Committee.
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