Scores: ULM 5, Jacksonville State 0; Tulane 4, ULM 1
Teams: ULM (2-4), Jacksonville State (0-8), Tulane (5-0)
Location: Gulf Shores, Ala.
GULF SHORES, Ala. – The ULM beach volleyball team split a pair of contests on the first day of the Gulf Shores Invitational on Saturday, grabbing a 5-0 win over Jacksonville State and falling 4-1 to Tulane.
-The Warhawks dominated in the opening matches of the day for the 5-0 win against Jacksonville State. Jacksonville State was only able to push the Warhawks past two sets in one game, in the three position. Catherine Griffith and Holland Ponthieux grabbed a win on their debut as Warhawks.
-The Warhawks continued some of that momentum into the second contest of the day, but weren’t able to maintain it. The Warhawks were able to take a game off of Tulane with a win in the five spot by Grace Convey and Bailey Smith. Tara Jenkins and Claire Crossfield, Becca Brown and Ana Ribeiro, as well as Convey and Smith, all pushed Tulane to three sets.
FROM COACH HILTZ
Jacksonville State win: “I felt this was a much better performance. The wind was certainly a factor but it also forced us to focus even more on making good contacts. Our first and second contacts were not great last week so it was nice to see that get better right away. Once we figured out how to use the wind to our advantage we were able to pull away in every match. It was a great lesson on attitude. Instead of complaining about the conditions, we turned the conditions into an advantage for ourselves and just figured out how to be successful within the given parameters we were facing. Good win for us.”
Tulane loss: I felt like we were in the match right up to the end. Every match was closely contested and neither team could ever feel like they were in control of the match. The ones couldn’t have played a closer pair of sets, our fours went to three sets and could have won their match, and our threes battled to a third set as well. If any of those matches have a few points bounce our way, then we would have an entirely different outcome.
About the day: In the end today, we went 1-1 with a 4-1 loss to Tulane and a sweep versus Jacksonville State. That being said, I feel like it was important for us to come out today and prove to ourselves that last weekend was not typical Warhawk Beach Volleyball. We knew we were better than how we performed last week so there was a real need to show ourselves that we are better than that. The feel leaving the courts today was completely different than last week. Overall I felt like we did a really nice job of understanding and managing a very stiff wind that gusted all day.
Moving forward: The trick for us now is to figure out how to make those points bounce our way rather than hoping for things to go our way. Composure in tough situations is important and we lost our sense of calm a few times at crucial moments today. We can and will fix that and we will get on the winning track again soon. The playing conditions were very abnormal and we were quite proficient at dealing with those conditions instead of complaining about them. Might see more of the same tomorrow against a very, very good Eckerd squad. We will get some good rest tonight and try to start the day with another win tomorrow.