Falcon volleyball faces new competition in upcoming games

By Zane Miller and By Zane Miller

The Falcons volleyball team will take on the Chicago Flames and the Duquesne Dukes in a doubleheader on Friday before facing the Xavier Musketeers on Saturday afternoon to complete the three match home stand to begin the regular season.

“They are going to give us good competition,” Falcons head coach Danijela Tomic said. “All three teams are very competitive at this point in the season, especially the opening weekend, our focus is going to be on our team. It’s what we need to do on our side of the net and then as the game goes on, we’ll get some data and some information, but it’s going to be really focusing on ourselves and doing things that we’ve been focusing on in practice.”

With all three matches being against non-conference opponents, the team has a limited amount of past game data to go on, causing the team to take a different approach to the weekend.

“Every team is different every year,” Tomic said. “I don’t expect them to be the same team from last year, but (Chicago) has a new coaching staff. We have not played Xavier since I’ve been here or Duquesne, so our focus is not on what they’re going to do, It’s what we’re going to do on our side of the net.”

The series is taking place as part of the Hampton Inn Invitational with the four teams facing each other in different matches throughout the weekend; however, the team feels that they are prepared for this type of situation.

“In volleyball at the beginning of the season, you usually play three matches in two days, sometimes four matches. Last year we did the same format and we liked it, so we kept it and all the teams agreed.”

The team has also been able to take a lot of positive signs for the season out of the preparation over the course of the preseason.

“Our team just wants to get better and for any coach that’s all you can ask from them,” Tomic said. “They come in; they work hard. We’ve been consistently improving on the things we’ve focused on in practice, and we’ve seen improvement in game situations.”

The team also feels fortunate to have the opportunity to play at home to begin the season.

“It’s nice to be at home,” Tomic said. “Some coaches like to take the team on the road at the beginning to get through those growing pains and get better on the road, but our players like to play in front of our home crowd and their families.” This is a facility where we practice every day and we’re comfortable playing here, and to showcase our 2017 team in front of our home fans is exciting for us.”