This is an entry in my volleyball coaching log.

Sunday featured a pair of regional league matches. One was against a team we played last week (beat 3-0) and the other against a team we played back toward the beginning of the season (beat 3-1). Neither were expected to be a major challenge, which turned out to be the case.

Only two of the players used in last week’s matches were on-hand this time around, and I left both our starting setter and team captain behind to allow some of the second team players to get playing time. We did still have most of our first team in action, though. For all but one of them it was their first chance at match play for 2014.

I was largely pleased with what I saw. The hitting was in line with how it’s been developing of late. The recognition of what’s happening on the other side of the court is growing nicely. The defense was solid. Blocking was generally positionally decent, though timing was an issue. There were a couple of instances of not expecting to have to play the ball and a few ill-timed missed serves. Beyond that, though, I was pleased. They team had to fight through a couple of ticklish points to come out with close set victories, as had to be done last week.

The win puts us at 10-2 in the league, with our losses only coming to the top 2 teams. Given the remaining competition, it’s very likely we’ll finish in 3rd overall.

We also stand 3rd in our BUCS league, with the last 3 matches of the regular season coming this week on Wednesday and Thursday. Win the one on Wednesday and we are assured of a top-3 league finish and a spot in Championships. Win them all and we’ll be assured at least a tie for first – with tiebreaks the deciding who ends up official winner for seeding heading into Championships..Our Wednesday competition is a team we’ve already beaten fairly handily. The other we haven’t seen yet. They have a losing record, but were able to take sets off the two other teams we’re up against for the league title, so we need to take them seriously.

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John Forman
John Forman

John is currently the Talent Strategy Manager (oversees the national teams) and Indoor Performance Director for Volleyball England, as well as Global Director for Volleyball for Nation Academy. His volleyball coaching experience includes all three NCAA divisions, plus Junior College, in the US; university and club teams in the UK; professional coaching in Sweden; and both coaching and club management at the Juniors level. He's also been a visiting coach at national team, professional club, and juniors programs in several countries. Learn more on his bio page.

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