Nov. 12, 2012
MADISON, Wis. – Only four regular season matches remain for the Wisconsin volleyball team and the Badgers (16-13 overall, 4-12 Big Ten) are still looking for an NCAA Tournament berth. UW hosts three straight matches in the next 10 days.
The Badgers host Iowa (10-19, 2-14) on Friday at 7:30 p.m. in the UW Field House. No. 9 Nebraska (20-5, 12-4) comes to town on Sunday for a 1 p.m. match in the Field House. Friday is Senior Night with UW honoring seniors Alexis Mitchell, Mary Ording and Bailey Reshel in pre-match ceremonies.
Head coach Pete Waite addressed the media on Monday and talked about his senior class.
Opening Statement: We're excited about Senior Night coming up with three seniors who have done a nice job for us, in Alexis Mitchell and Mary Ording and Bailey Reshel.
Alexis has done a great job. She's been on the court for much of her career and just has continued to improve. She's a kid who was a track star coming out of high school more than volleyball and is just a phenomenal athlete on the court. She and all three of them have taken a big leadership role.
Mary Ording has stepped in for the first time and filled in a position she didn't play for three years. We're really excited for what she's done and happy for her that she's gotten on the court and done so well.
And Bailey Reshel came to us as a transfer from South Dakota and has worked her way into the lineup. This year (she) worked through a concussion for about three weeks and is back on the court and playing some of the best ball of anyone on the team.
We're real happy our fans can send them off and see them on Friday and honor them.
Also, Annemarie Hickey is leading the league in digs right now. So we're excited about that. She's been doing a nice job putting up big numbers for us.
We know we've got just four matches remaining, and our goal is still to make the (NCAA) tournament. We've probably got to win two or three of these four to make it and have a shot at it. So our team is going to be working hard for that.
Just coming down the stretch and having to win these matches, you've been sort of in a tough stretch as far as winning. You may be playing well, but what do you have to do to just get over the hump?
It's just going to be consistency and fighting at the end of each set, because in each of the matches, we're playing to about 18 to 20 points right with the team, and we haven't been able to finish out and close out those sets. That's the important part, for a team to mature to that point where they're strong enough to finish and stay steady through that time and not flinch at all.
That's the biggest part because we've played throughout the season with everybody in the league. It's a matter of sustaining it through the end of the set.
How is Iowa and Nebraska? How are they playing right now?
Iowa just has the one win against Purdue, which is a shock to everybody because Purdue was in the top 15 at the time.
Nebraska is doing well. They've had some good wins, but they also, a week before, took a couple of losses at Michigan and Michigan State, where we just took two losses. Those two Michigan teams are playing very well. Nebraska is a very formidable team. They're phenomenal. I think they're still going to be ranked still in the top 10, probably eight or nine.