Quote the Horns (Sept. 15)
Sept. 15, 2009
The second-ranked Texas Volleyball team hosts No. 23 Baylor on Wednesday, Sept. 16 at 6 p.m.
Head coach Jerritt Elliott
On how the squad's teambuilding trips to Europe and the St. Stephen's training camp have paid off: We work really hard with these young ladies in terms of communication--understanding roles, understanding responsibilities within the team, and making them work with one another to learn how to have those adult relationships where they can communicate when things are going bad and when they are going well. Those kinds of trips and those kinds of bonding experiences need to be presented to them often, and it is those trips and those opportunities [to Europe and St. Stephen's] in the preseason that did that.
On the team's depth: We have the deepest bench I have ever had. We have all 12 players contributing regularly. It has been a challenge for us, but it has been good because we have been communicating with our players a lot. They understand their roles. They understand that we can call them at anytime during a match. We have had two or three matches where we have played all 12 players.
Junior outside hitter Juliann Faucette
On the team's goals this year and whether that includes a national championship: Every year we set that national championship goal, but I think this year it is just day-by-day, training day-by-training day. We are focusing more on the practice gyms than the actual games because without that behind-the-scenes stuff, you are not going to win a national championship. That is the main focus for this year, and maybe that is something that has changed from past years.
Senior setter Ashley Engle
On the team's teambuilding efforts in the offseason: We have spent a lot of time together from spring until now. I am surprised that we are not sick of each other. I think that it really shows in the core. We are having a lot of fun together. We know the in-and-outs of each other's games, and we just help each other out a lot. It has been a lot of fun.
On what they can still work on as a team: We want it to look effortless, but there are tons and tons of things [that we can still work on] from our defense to our offensive system. We have so many players and such a deep bench where we could be running different players on and off the court. We just need to be ready for whatever a match might bring.
On whether there is a bulls-eye on the Longhorn as they work towards another conference championship: The bulls-eye just gets bigger and bigger. I think that the expectations are rising, and this is probably the most media that we have ever had at practice. Those things are great, but they can also be a distraction to an extent, so we need to be able to take this and deal with it. Then when we get on the court, we need to make sure that we are focused and just getting better.
Sophomore middle blocker Rachael Adams
On whether she feels as though players can earn their way into matches through practices: Honestly, no one can take a night off in practice or in games. There is always someone behind you gunning for your position. Every night we could put lineup on the court, which is great.
Senior outside hitter Destinee Hooker
On being know as "TVD" and why she is known for playing exceptionally well during televised match-ups: You do not want to mess up on TV. You do not want to lose on TV. No one likes losing period, but when you are TV everyone sees it. When you are on TV, it is your chance to prove yourself.