The Eastern volleyball team will try to give Murray State their first loss of the season on Friday and to not let Austin Peay get their first win of the season.
The Racers are 4-0 in conference play and are just a very strong team all around.
“I don’t know that Murray has any weaknesses,” coach Sam Wolinski said. “They are undefeated in conference play, they have one loss overall in the season and that’s to a top 20 opponent.”
Austin Peay has not found the win column yet in OVC play, but the Panthers know that anything can happen.
“Austin Peay can come after you at any given time,” Wolinski said. “There’s some matches where they have done a great job, there’s some matches where you look at the stats sheet and maybe they haven’t had their best match, but they’re going to bring it every single time.”
Wolinski believes their side out percentage and serving game will be very crucial in both matches and will help them against both teams.
Trying to hand Murray State their first loss will be tough but the Panthers want to just stick to their style of volleyball.
Wolinski said that they can’t let the uncontrollables get to them.
“We talk a lot about that and deal with that a lot during practice, we definitely made some strides with getting one percent better at that for sure.”
Wolinski added that Murray is an excellent serving team, which the Panthers struggled with last weekend at Belmont.
Eastern had some big wins at Lantz Arena a couple weeks ago and then went straight to Southern Illinois-Edwardsville for another victory to prove that they are just as strong on the road as they are at home.
“We’ve proven that we can win on the road against our travel partner in a mid-week match which I think is great,” Wolinski said.
The Panthers traveled to Kentucky Thursday night so that today they have the opportunity to have an extra hour in Murray’s facility.
“I think that will help as well just to get us focused and ready to go,” Wolinski said. “Whatever we need to do, we make sure that we keep doing, and if we need to tweak something, we’ll tweak something to make sure that the girls are ready to go.”
The Panthers first match will be against Murray State at 7 pm. They will take on Austin Peay on Saturday at 2 pm.
Ali Kissane can be reached at 581-2812 or [email protected]