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Attitude helping volleyball team

September 29, 2016

Alex Heard

Staff Reporter | amh072@latech.edu

LA Tech entered conference play with their best record since the 2010 season. The Lady Techsters fell to Rice in their C-USA opener three sets to none. Photo by Darrell James.

LA Tech entered conference play with their best record since the 2010 season. The Lady Techsters fell to Rice in their C-USA opener three sets to none. Photo by Darrell James.

 

The animal kingdom and sports are similar.

 

When teams play at home, they are protecting their territory from opponents wishing to take their turf, just as animals would do. In addition, while facing opponents, teams must know when the other is vulnerable and when to attack during that period of weakness.

 

Knowing when to attack like that is known as the killer instinct.

 

For Head Coach Adriano de Souza and the Louisiana Tech women’s volleyball team, they must learn to finish off opponents.

 

Tech has a record of 8-7, with a majority of losses stemming from the team’s inability to finish.

 

De Souza said the losses are not a result of lack of enthusiasm and want.

 

“This group has been very nice to work with because they have been so enthusiastic,” de Souza said. “All we need to do is finish teams and the team has been working hard to learn how.”

 

Angela Papach, a senior right-side hitter, said the team must not give in at the end of matches if they wish to improve.

 

“We have got to have a killer instinct,” Papach said. “We have to put in that extra step in order to beat a team.”

 

De Souza said the team’s progress, this year and for years to come, depends heavily on the leadership of its seniors.

 

“It is very important for the three seniors to portray the culture, goals and dreams they have learned here to younger players,” de Souza said. “Every year the team has gotten better. Everything those three say will dictate what other players will have to do in the future.”

 

Papach said the leadership of the seniors is crucial.

 

“It is very important for us to lead,” Papach said. “We are taking our role as a big deal. Our goal since we got to Tech was to get to the conference tournament. We think this is the best year to do it. We can leave with a good note, for underclassmen to follow.”

 

De Souza said this year’s bunch is one of the best he has had.

 

“This is a team that is more together,” De Souza said. “This team enjoys preparing for a match. We are more aware of the needs of the team. There is a much more competitive demeanor prior to a match than in years past.”

 

Tech lost its first match in Conference USA play to Rice 3-0.

 

De Souza said not only must the team learn to finish, but it must play smarter as well, if it wants to be true competitors in conference.

 

“We must be more efficient for conference play,” de Souza said. “This team likes to be together and grow, and we have had very good practices. I’m confident in this team.”

 

Tech plays at 7 p.m. Friday against Western Kentucky in the Thomas Assembly Center.

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