This is an entry in my volleyball coaching log.

Although it was meant to be a home match for us, we were on the road for our 8th match of the BUCS league campaign. Fortunately, it was to our nearest rival, so not a particularly hard trip. Nor was it a hard match – at all. Our opposition looks very likely to finish in last when all is said and done. We could have, and probably should have, held them to single digit scores in both sets, but didn’t quite accomplish that (it was 24-9 in the second when we inexplicably gave up several points in a row before finally closing it out). The match lasted about 45 minutes, though we played a third set to get the bench a bit of playing time (they won fairly comfortably as well).

Our play could have been sharper. There was a bit of tentative hitting and I wasn’t happy with the way some off-speed shots were being played low to the net rather than getting up over the block. Covering our hitters could have been better and there were a few moments when players made some panic plays. I do have to account for a very slippery floor, however, when assessing the team’s play. It made it hard to play off a stable platform or get accelerated into a spike approach. And of course the level of play was poor. On the plus side, it did give the starters a chance to work out some of the bugs since they haven’t played all together in a match since the end of November.

The win assures us of finishing no worse than 3rd in the league and thus gives us a spot in Championships. Next up is a double-header against the one team we haven’t seen yet thus far. They have managed to take sets off our league championship rivals, but have only won thus far against the team we beat last night. On paper these are very winnable matches. If we take both we’ll at worst be in a tie for first in the league, though whether we end up top could come down to tiebreaks.

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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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