MIAMI — Sweeping a three-game set from Cottey (Missouri) College, the Northeastern Oklahoma A&M College Lady Norse volleyball team recorded their second straight shutout Tuesday, Aug. 29, in the Glen Wolfe Student Activity Center.
The Lady Norse carry a 2-1 record into the first round of the Highlands (Kansas) Community College Invitational Tournament on Friday, Sept. 1.
Last year the Scotties finished 24-14 after losing 3-0 to Fort Scott, Kansas, in the opening round of district play.
The Lady Norse open the invitational at 1 p.m. Friday against Highlands followed by a 5 p.m. match against North Platte, Nebraska. NEO plays at 11 a.m. Saturday against Ellsworth, Iowa, before concluding the tournament at 3 p.m. against Allen County Community College of Iola, Kansas.
“The more we play together, the better our people get,” Lady Norse head coach Eric Iverson said. “We’ve only been on campus now for three weeks and our team is still figuring out each other’s little nuances.
“They are still new to each other,” Iverson said. “I think we’re doing really good about figuring out what we need to do to play better,” Iverson said. “We’re also doing a better job of understanding what just playing together will fix.”
NEO won the opening set against Neosho County by a 25-22 margin before posting a 25-18 victory and a 25-13 win in the best-of-five match.
“We’re giving them a lot of freedom to play and not try to coach them on everything,” Iverson said. “We want them to understand that there are times in a match where you can’t fix everything, but they’ve got to play themselves out of certain situations.
“Although I don’t like the way we started last night, it’s our responsibility as coaches and players to find a strategy where we can come out and play better earlier that we did,” Iverson said. “We played well overall, got better as the match went on and finished better.
“We just need to come out stronger,” Iverson said. “We got solid play from middle hitter Juliette Moore who is coming back from a groin injury in the preseason.
“She’s starting to look like Juliette as far as health is concerned,” Iverson said. “She’s progressing and getting healthier.
“I think overall, everybody played pretty solid,” Iverson said. “Our setter Marley (Hensley) did a real good job in running our offense by really distributing the balls and dumping the balls.
“Our bullet points are, if we can talk from the bench, call on our hitters to go to the net and talk to our service scheme, those are the three things we want to do each match,” Iverson said. “Communication in those three general areas really help us stay focused during a match.”