Across the country in West Point, N.Y., the WSU volleyball team starts their 2013 season filled with high expectations.
The Cougars will take on Alabama, Seton Hall University and host team Army during the two-day tournament beginning Saturday.
“I think we’re definitely ready to play a match,” WSU Head Coach Jen Greeny said in a press conference. “We’re kind of tired of seeing each other across the net every single day.”
WSU is coming off a 2012 campaign in which they compiled a 13-19 overall record with a 3-17 record in Pac-12 conference play.
Seniors Camryn Irwin and Marcelina Glab were named captains for the season Thursday, leading a roster of eight returning letter winners, six freshmen and one transfer.
“It’ll be nice to get out on a road trip and kind of break those new freshmen in, and let them know what it’s all about,” Greeny said.
With the team’s goal of going undefeated in nonconference play, the Cougars are looking forward to starting the season and getting a feel for what the team can accomplish.
“I think summer workouts and fall camp has really prepared us for this tournament,” Glab said in a press video. “I’m excited to see what that will lead to and our capabilities going into this tournament as well as the rest of this season.”
With so many new incoming players, the Cougs had to adjust to some new styles and faces.
“(The returners and newcomers) have blended extremely well,” Greeny said. “Coming into fall we weren’t quite sure if it was going to blend, but they have done an amazing job.”
While Greeny said all of the returners have noticeably improved from last season, she did point out the improvement of junior outside hitter Jaicee Harris as one that caught her attention.
“Jaicee Harris has done some really great things,” Greeny said. “Even her leadership skills and how vocal she is. I know she had to take a lot of the burden last year and took so many swings, but I think she is really excited to have some new talent.”
Greeny says she has a great problem on her hands, not knowing who to place in her starting lineup because of the depth of talent on the roster.
The Cougars take on Alabama on Saturday, Aug. 31 at 9 a.m. followed by Seton Hall at 1:30 p.m. and Army on Sunday, Sep. 1 at 10 a.m.
All road matches for the Cougars can be heard on KQQQ-AM 1150 in Pullman.