California Dreamin' II

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Hey Badger Fans!

Hope everyone had a good week. Like I said in the last update, half of the team went to Switzerland last week for the Montreux tournament, so the rest of us got a lot of reps and technical work done.

Last Monday, we had a fairly long practice, beginning with our warm-up and some positional training. I'm still trying to get the hang of the speed while keeping the location fairly accurate, but it gets a little better everyday. After some serving and passing work, we got into a few games of 6-on-6 and some fun wash drills. We only had three middles this past week, so I give them major props for sticking it out and pushing through it!

Tuesday was a slightly shorter day, still with plenty of 6-on-6 playing, which I enjoy. I enjoy it because this is one of the only ways to get in a rhythm and find momentum with teammates. In drills, it is easier to work out the kinks and talk about what needs to be better. But in a game-like situation, it forces everyone to communicate at a high level if we want to fix problems that are occurring throughout these wash and 6-on-6 drills. Ultimately, this builds trust and positive communication between each other.

Moving on through the week, Wednesday was our light, recovery day. We got in the gym for a little over an hour, compared to our usual three to three-and-a-half hours and got some serving-passing reps in.

Unlike two weeks ago, we did not have yoga this past Wednesday, which left plenty of time for rehabbing, recovering, and getting ready for Starlings. I'm really starting to enjoy Starlings, the group of players who we help coach every Monday and Wednesday. The kids are always super excited to be there and it is fun to be able to talk to them and get to know them a little more personally, while also helping them get better at volleyball.

We got right back to the grind on Thursday and Friday. We did not have a Red-Blue scrimmage last week, considering we only had a handful of players in the first place! But, I actually really enjoyed last week because it was much more hands on and individual focused, while still competing the majority of the time. I found this extremely helpful, and I'm starting to feel more comfortable running this type of system. Even though I do mess up a lot, I have to realize that the learning process is hard and it does not come over night, even though I wish it did!

This past weekend was more of a relaxing one. But I did attend a pool party, along with a few other players from the team. It was of course beautiful outside - that is something that I will miss! But, come on now, who doesn't love those Wisconsin winters? We also played bags or corn hole, whichever you prefer! Sadly, I lost ... three times! I'm a little disappointed in myself for that. Looking forward to this week as the team returned late on June 2, and they will most likely be back in the gym by Wednesday. Our scrimmage is Thursday, so hopefully I will have a better showing then last time.

Thanks for reading everyone. On Wisconsin!

Lauren Carlini

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