Post-Match Quotes: vs. Utah

Recap

Head coach Suzie Fritz
On Utah’s defense…
That’s a formidable block. I think that is something that Utah prides themselves on. We kind of knew that coming in, that Utah could score points with their block. I will say No. 1, and I don’t want to discredit them, but I think we weren’t challenging the block in the most productive ways that we possibly could. We hurt ourselves way too many times in not just managing bad situations. I thought early on, midway through game one, we were handling the ball decently to give ourselves some opportunities. Just that rhythm that we like to be in offensively, good pass, tempo the set, and attack in a productive way, we were just a little bit disconnected.

On the loss…
We didn’t play to our capabilities, and I think we struggled as of late to play to our capabilities. It certainly wasn’t for a lack of will and trying. We kept trying to get better and fight through it and find some answers to get ourselves back on track. Bottom line, I thought Utah out-played us. They were better than us tonight.

On reflecting on the season…
“You know we were so excited to have the opportunity to be here and extend our season. This has been a really special team. They are all special in their own ways, but this one, in terms of how they came together and the leadership of our senior class. The types of people that they are, and how they work together was very special and quite extraordinary in the amount of time that they did it.

On the progression of the team over the season…
It’s pretty significant. We kind of laugh about it now – we had seven new players coming in, between the entries in the spring and into the fall. Our veterans, our upperclassmen who had been there several years and recently lost six seniors from last year’s team, were concerned about what kind of team they were going to have. We kept trying to assure them, ‘Hey, we’re going to be okay. If we do it the right way and keep getting better, we are going to be okay.’ But in all honesty, in your back of your head, you don’t know if you’re going to be okay either [laughs]. We talked a lot about coming together, and spent a lot of time developing our strengths and how those things can fit together. We simply just got better. We had people like, Natali Jones who has taken a significant jump in her career and done some really special things as a senior. I think Chelsea Keating played her best volleyball as a senior. [Katie] Reininger, the redshirt year we had her in last year was tough at the time but I think it had a lot to do with her ability to learn and grow and be the player that she is just as a sophomore. They are all better. When I think about them individually. Dallas Garnder is a walk-on student-athlete and I told her she could come in the gym for five days, and she is out there. There are a lot of neat stories on our team, and collectively they have made up a wonderful group of young people to be around.


Redshirt senior Chelsea Keating, outside hitter
On the season…
“This season has probably been my favorite. Mainly just because of the girls and how we have gotten along. Understand one another and embrace our differences because there are so many different personalities on this team. And in the past, that’s kind of gotten away from being good volleyball players and being good teammates to one another. This year, we have embraced our differences and it has been so much more fun than in the past. It’s been my favorite year so far.


Redshirt sophomore Katie Reininger, middle blocker
On what the season means moving forward…
We have a wonderful opportunity, especially with the senior class that we are just graduating. They have paved the way for us. They showed us what a good team feels like, and what we need to have in the years to come. It’s a good opportunity to have a solid group of girls that they have started and keep going with it.

On what Utah did to beat K-State…
Utah is a good team. They did the little things right. They had the block set up. On our side, we were not connecting in some areas. I think we needed to manage the little things. We made too many errors. Other than that, Utah played a really good game, and we didn’t step up to match it.