By Lucas Owens
No. 19 Mizzou volleyball comes home this weekend to face No. 16 Kentucky at the Hearnes Center on Sunday. Mizzou comes into this matchup off a tough weekend in Waco, Texas- which saw the Tigers drop two to now-No. 2 Baylor and No. 11 Hawaii in the Baylor Classic.
After starting the season 8-0, the Tigers are dropped directly into the gauntlet of SEC play, having to face Kentucky this weekend before going on the road to LSU.
NOW ON KCOU Sports YouTube: Member-Meneh, Sents discuss season opener
A common sentiment among the team was focusing on errors on their side of the net. Redshirt Senior Riley Sents said the team is focused fixing specifics ahead the matchup.
“I would say just really (we’re) focusing on our side of the net,” Sents said. “(And) limiting any of our unforced errors, I think that would take away and make those games’ a lot different.”
Sents said the two losses to elite competition were a big help to the team.
“It taught us a lot about what we need to work on,” Sents said. “and shined light on things we need to do the most and I think one of the big times was lowering our errors at the serving line”.
Interim Head Coach Joshua Taylor is also focused on improving on the pair of losses.
“They shine a light on the things you need to be working on to improve and reach your potential as a team,” Taylor said.
Taylor also said that the two games against Baylor and Hawaii were the best preparation they could have had going into Kentucky and SEC play.
“Going into this week the difficulty of practice is going to be the psychological component- its being good the whole practice technically,” Taylor said.
Mizzou had 18 errors in their matchup against Baylor and 29 against Hawaii. The errors in the loss to the Rainbow Warriors were especially costly- the Tigers lost by just two points in two of the five sets.
Nonetheless, Missouri said its looking forward to getting back to Hearnes Center this weekend.
“Hearnes is home,” junior Leketor Member-Meneh said. “Hearnes is familiar faces, no matter how good or how bad you’re doing.”
“Hearnes has really become my home,” Sents said. ” To think of this being my last SEC season- it’s kind of crazy but I’m really excited.”
The Tigers so far this season are 4-0 at the Hearnes Center. Mizzou faces the Wildcasts this Sunday at the Hearnes Center at 2:00 PM. You can hear the game on KCOU, starting with pregame coverage on Tiger Pregame Live at 1:45.
Edited by Garrett Jones | firstname.lastname@example.org