The Student Newspaper of Mississippi State University

The Reflector

The Student Newspaper of Mississippi State University

The Reflector

The Student Newspaper of Mississippi State University

The Reflector

Maroon spikes White

After going 17-15 with a 6-12 record in conference play last season, Mississippi State looks to have a season of redemption on the volleyball court. 

The team struggled heavily throughout the 2015 season but finished strong and won their last three conference matches against LSU, Ole Miss and Georgia. They hope to carry that momentum with them into the new season and make a run in the strong SEC conference.

With the 2016 volleyball season quickly approaching, the team got a chance to display the results of intense three-a-day workouts and give fans a glimpse of the team. 

The scrimmage game gave the team a chance to see their strengths and weaknesses. 

“While there are some things that we need to focus on as we get closer to Friday, I thought that the team performed very well across the board,” Coach David McFatrich said. “Everyone showed some flashes of greatness tonight. Now we just have to put it all together.” 

Maroon squad overshadowed the White squad by dominating the opening set 25-20 and the second set 25-17. 

The White squad tried to stage a comeback and force a fifth set by securing a 25-20 victory in the third set, but the Maroon squad prevailed with a 25-12 victory in the latter part of the fourth set, concluding the scrimmage game with Maroon winning 3-1. 

Even with the departure of five seniors,. the immense talent remains with the return of senior Evie Grace Singleton, who lead the Bulldogs in blocks last season, and Jazmyne Johnson, who led the Bulldogs in kills, aces and points last season. Also returning are Junior Payton Harris who was MSU’s dig leader last season and Sophomore Blossom Sato who is MSU’s top setter. 

Additions to the already talented roster are standout freshman Riley Duzrenack, Emily Hill and Liv Benner. To complete the squad is junior transfer Jelena Vejan, who previously played for Seattle University, where she earned All-Wac Freshman Team and All-Wac Second Team honors.

After the scrimmage game, McFatrich was pleased with what he saw on the court and was excited to see the team play against another team. 

“I know the girls are excited about getting to the weekend and finally playing someone other than ourselves,” Coach McFatrich said. “Tonight was a great showing for our team, but we’re ready to get out on the court on Friday and take on one of the best teams in the nation in Kansas.” 

The season opens with the Bulldog invitational that extends from Friday to Sunday. The season opener is Friday, Aug. 26 at Newell-Grissom, where the Bulldogs will battle against the Kansas Jayhawks. The first serve starts at 7 p.m.

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Maroon spikes White