WKU volleyball heads to Lexington for tournament

Lucas Aulbach

After starting the 2011 volleyball season with a three-game sweep at the Belmont Invitational, Head Coach Travis Hudson is already looking for areas for the team to improve.

“I wouldn’t say that I’m thrilled with how we played the whole time, but I don’t think anybody really is this early in the year,” he said. “I’m thrilled with the out- come and I’m thrilled with the feedback, in terms of what we need to do to get better.”

The 3-0 start was due in large part by the return of senior middle hitter Tiffany Elmore, who led the team with 27 total kills and earned Sun Belt Conference co-Player of the Week. Elmore suffered a torn anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) in her right leg during the NCAA Tournament last Decem- ber.

After rigorous offseason workouts, she was able to come back for the season opener. With the first weekend of the season over, the Lady Toppers can now focus on preparing for competition this weekend. WKU travels to Lexington for the Kentucky Classic tournament hosted by the University of Kentucky. It will be somewhat of a tougher task this weekend for WKU, as the Lady Toppers will be in action against Kentucky, Virginia Tech and Ohio University, all of whom made the NCAA Tournament last season.

“We have to improve offensively. That’s what we addressed in practice (this week),” Hudson said. “The level of competition is really going up this weekend.”

Senior middle hitter Lindsay Williams said WKU has been working on improving defensively since the preseason and this weekend will be a good gauge of their progress. “We’re just trying to remain defensive-

minded,” she said.

“Our goal for the season is stopping anybody from an ace standpoint, from a block standpoint and from a dig standpoint.”

Sophomore Ashley Potts said in order to prepare, the Lady Toppers have been working on all aspects of the game this week.

“This week we’re focusing a lot on of fense but not forgetting our defensive mind set,” she said. “We’re working hard on serving, defense and blocking.”

Potts started at libero in Nashville last weekend — a position that junior Sarah Rogers started at in every match last season.

Hudson said he wanted to give Potts a chance at the position because of her strong defensive play and that both her and Rogers will see time at the position this season.

“Those two kids are, in my opinion, the best two defensive players in our league,” he said. “Sarah Rogers is a phenomenal defensive player, and they’re both great ball control players. I would trade neither of them for anybody in the country.”

Potts said she plans to use what Rogers has taught her at the position.

“Sarah’s pushed me the entire time I’ve been on the team, and I really look up to her as a player and as a teammate,” she said. “We’ll get the job done this weekend no matter who’s playing libero.”