Match 3: Gophers Host Texas (8-29-23)

Ignatius L Hoops

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Jenna Wenaas and Texas enter the match 1-1 following an opening night loss to Long Beach and victory over Phoebe Awoleye's former team, Loyola Marymount.




LONG BEACH, Calif. – No. 1 Texas Volleyball picked up its first win of the season, sweeping Loyola Marymount, 25-22, 25-22, 25-19, on Saturday at Walter Pyramid.

The Longhorns (1-1) split their weekend matches at Long Beach State and will next head to No. 7 Minnesota to face the Gophers on Tuesday at 7 p.m.

Jenna Wenaas led the Longhorns with 10 kills, while Madisen Skinner finished with eight kills and had a team-high 10 digs and two blocks. Devin Kahahawai started and had six kills, three digs and two blocks.

Ella Swindle dished out 24 assists and had five digs and three blocks. Emma Halter had six digs and Carissa Barnes and Keonilei Akana each had four digs
 

El Amin Fan

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Thanks for starting these. Sure hope we have match by match threads instead of a single mega thread for an entire season.
 

Bigk

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If Jenna W. is leading the team in the stat line, that just might mean they aren’t as powerful as initially projected. I know she is a very good player, but should she be leading the team? No disrespect to her, but I don’t think she would be number one on Minnesota .Was their loss a fluke or is it telling to their strength?
 

GopherVB23

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I think Texas looked a bit discombobulated this first weekend. I think they're still getting adjusted to playing with each other and who is going to take what sort of thing. Kind of like Baylor. They are already here in MN so I expect they will be practicing hard the next couple of days to clean that stuff up.

I expect a battle but one that we may be able to come out on top of this time. I hope to see the same intensity as Saturday night and Landfair stepping up a bit more. We don't need her carrying the team but I would like to see a little more focus.
 

Gopher68

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Gophers move up to 5 in this week's poll, Texas drops to 7.
 



BleedGopher

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Pumped for this match! The atmosphere will be rocking.

Go Gophers!!
 


WayOfTheGopher

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9 aces for TCU, 7 for Baylor and now 7 for Texas and it's only the second set. What the hell is going on?
 




WayOfTheGopher

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Good chance we weren't gonna win tonight anyways. Up against the defending champs and we were well below their standards. Learn from your mistakes and move on.
 

Frink

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That last serve into the net was just so frustrating. An absolute momentum killer at a key time
 

WayOfTheGopher

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This is a game McKenna would like to forget. It seems like when she's not hitting into the block, she's hitting it into the tape or out. Also doesn't help that your "best" player was having another average game.
 




walleye

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Gophers had their chances. Sloppy play at critical times killed them. Everyone had their good moments. Wucherer needs to learn when to hit the "Wuch" out of the ball and when to take the "Wuch" off it. Landfair needs to step up in big moments. Shaffmaster was steady. Murr made many extraordinary plays. However, she hit two serves into the net at critical moments--I have to think that was due to fatigue. Gophers need to learn from this match. They can be an elite team.
 

BleedGopher

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Disappointing match, gotta learn from this one and quickly.

Go Gophers!!
 

Ignatius L Hoops

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When the Gopher block finally arrived, the match evened out; but...Texas was better at keeping the ball off the floor. And, yes, there must be some master plan behind having Landfair receiving serve after serve
 

DarthGopher

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When the Gopher block finally arrived, the match evened out; but...Texas was better at keeping the ball off the floor. And, yes, there must be some master plan behind having Landfair receiving serve after serve
I had a running tally going at one point of Landfair shanks off of serve receiving - I stopped after 10. Even when she did play it successfully, control was an issue, and the setters were having to cover a ton of ground to track down wayward bumps.

If the coach is going to insist on her being a 6 rotation player, then she has to absolutely step up and be that person. Otherwise, start rotating her out.

Texas also had O'Neal back tonight and it showed.

Lots of unforced errors - good teams will make you pay for it.
 

DarthGopher

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Gophers had their chances. Sloppy play at critical times killed them. Everyone had their good moments. Wucherer needs to learn when to hit the "Wuch" out of the ball and when to take the "Wuch" off it. Landfair needs to step up in big moments. Shaffmaster was steady. Murr made many extraordinary plays. However, she hit two serves into the net at critical moments--I have to think that was due to fatigue. Gophers need to learn from this match. They can be an elite team.
What was frustrating is they had runs of solid, almost flawless play. Then would come these unforced errors at the worst possible times. Top tier teams like Texas will capitalize on those opportunities. Unfortunately, we decided to lay out a buffet.
 

Ignatius L Hoops

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I had a running tally going at one point of Landfair shanks off of serve receiving - I stopped after 10. Even when she did play it successfully, control was an issue, and the setters were having to cover a ton of ground to track down wayward bumps.

If the coach is going to insist on her being a 6 rotation player, then she has to absolutely step up and be that person. Otherwise, start rotating her out.

Texas also had O'Neal back tonight and it showed.

Lots of unforced errors - good teams will make you pay for it.

O'Neal:


The Longhorns (2-1) were led by Asjia O'Neal, who played her first match of the season and finished with seven kills and eight blocks
 

bleedsmaroonandgold

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2nd set was a fun, gutsy effort by the Gophs. 4th set was frustrating, going from up 18-14 and looking like we were going to force a fun fifth set to collapsing with a pair of 4-0 runs. Hope this isn't a pattern, I felt like last year's team would really struggle to stop the bleeding whenever it got into a funk.
 

PreacherRoe

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Too low, too slow. As a non-expert VB observer, I'd say Texas was playing way above the net compared to the Gophers. And the Gophers' offensive attacks were way too slow developing. Texas moved the ball toward the net much faster.
 

MplsGopher

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Texas is not #7 and we’re not #5. That’s fine. I would assume the floor for Texas is the final four and would not be surprised at all to see them back in the natty. Great, really talented roster. We had no answer for AO’N, and Phillips is great too. Their outsides just a bit lower but also very good. Freshman setter is tall. Other middle is tall and can get up, great hit off quick 1 set. Little libero was best defender last year and rightfully black top this year. Still have Akana as well.


That said: Cook should be fired if Landfair continues to play in the back row.

What a joke. This is supposedly player of the year. She does not move well and she does not pass he ball well. Serve receive is a joke.

I can only assume she threatened to transfer out unless she was promised 6-rot. She has not earned it.


Wucherer has only been marginally better. Not a great night offensively last night either. Had a couple nice moments against former teammate Wenaas, but frankly she lost the battle last night. Several times just hitting right into Phillips/AO’N block.


Middles are very athletic but still mostly used for blocking. There are just sets that Schiff cannot do, such as a standard quick 1.

Also looks like they prefer the D set to the back row over the standard pipe. Again, I guess that’s just what she can do well. Landfair even went from middle back over to the right to hit a D set. It went down.


If we play like that, it will be another sweet sixteen exit.
 

4EverAGopher

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Two of Hugh's most recent pins, Wenaas and Samedy, were successfully developed by him and neither are here to help bail us out in the back court. After last night's loss to Texas, you can see how true that statement is.

Landfair is simply not ready to play 6R right now, for whatever reason(s). Unfortunately, it has really impacted the rest of her game.

When it comes to developing their players, KCook has his work cut out for him just like all these college coaches do. During the off season, I know I was hoping for the recruiting of 2-3 DS/L with some consistent experience. We have two, but only one is eligible to play right now.
 
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MplsGopher

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Gray is a perfectly capable passer. Should be DS for Landfair for he rest of the season, done deal.

Elise McGhie is a perfectly capable passer. Probably should DS out Wucherer.

Hanson has already proven she can hit back right, so that’s the RS option for Schaff when she’s front row. Not much pipe hitting anyway.


All but guarantee these moves won’t be made. Cook would’ve made them to start the season.

Like I said, bet he’s scared they’ll (threaten to) transfer out if he takes away 6R from them.

Selfishness = sweet sixteen exit.

Not like you’re making the national team roster with that back row play …. Karch is watching.
 

WayOfTheGopher

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The way the fourth was rolling along I thought we were gonna play five, but the errors kept creeping up and once Texas tied it up it was all but over.
 

cloupher

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The way the fourth was rolling along I thought we were gonna play five, but the errors kept creeping up and once Texas tied it up it was all but over.
That was disappointing to throw away the 4th, but this should've been a Texas sweep as they let the 2nd slip away with a 23-20 lead.

Discouraging to see the tip coverage be as bad as it was under Hugh. Especially for Wenaas; you know she is going to tip if she gets stuffed on the first attempt.

Hopefully Zeynep is amazing and gets eligible before conference play begins!
 

MplsGopher

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But what does it matter if Cook won't sub out Landfair or Wucherer???

Gray played Libero the entire spring, and did just fine. Doing that for the team earns her ...... serving specialist.

Murr played as well as you could possibly ask and looks better than CC so far, to my eye test (I'm not a huge stats person, which I know is vball lifeblood).
 

GopherVB23

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Landfair has frankly been tragic since the season started. We don't know what's going on behind the scenes but I can't see Landfair threatening to transfer if she doesn't play 6 ro. She played 6 ro last year and did fine. Not great but serviceable so I could see why she started the season playing 6 ro. But no more, she needs to sit and reset. I honestly would prefer Julia playing over her right now, but it probably won't happen, especially against Martin and the red hot Florida team.

I really hope we see a DS for Landfair and I really really hope Kelsay can take Shaff to the next level in Shaff's setting and push her to set middle more often. It is absolutely needed every.single.game, not just when the passing is good, because it usually isn't.
 

MplsGopher

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The only middle set that Schaff can do consistently is that 31. Which ... fine! That thing can work work, so yes agree they need to do it more often. They never do slides. Would rather do a D set to a hitting DS.

Landfair is fine for the front row, would not want her completely sat.

She moves slowly. She doesn't look very athletic in the way she moves, to me. So it's odd to me that she played 6ro last season if that's true. I just assumed it was Wucherer playing 6 and Landfair getting subbed out by Kilkelly. My bad
 




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