Pre-Match Quotes: Iowa State

Head coach Suzie Fritz
On practices after five-set, come-from-behind win vs. Texas Tech…
“Our expectations are pretty high, and that’s what we want. We’ve talked about maintaining that underdog mentality, where you are living on the edge.”

On playing more consistently….
“I think we’ve done it several times, honestly. We’ve had matches where we’ve been consistent from start to finish; the last one [vs. Texas Tech] was not one of them. It’s in there. We are very, very good when it’s good. When we handle first contact at a high level, when we’re passing really well, we’re very, very good. Our setter [Katie Brand] does a nice job of when we’re not so good, when we’re in bad passing situations, making us better. Katie is really good when it’s bad, and we, as a team, are really good when it’s good. That sounds like a generic way of saying it. The task is to try to be in those situations a little more often. It’s probably what every coach in every sport is striving for: consistency.”

On controlling serve/receive…
“I think it’s an identity we have to maintain. We have to be able to put consistent pressure on our opponent from the service line, regardless of who it is. That’s where we feel our defensive package begins. That’s to be disruptive in the way you want to serve, via serving at a particular player, a particular area on the floor or in a particular way. That’s where we feel it has to start.”

On why it’s tough to play at Iowa State…
“They are good, and they’ve traditionally been good. They’ve been good for a long time. They are well coached. They have good volleyball players. That is simply the best answer I can tell you, that they are always really good. They are a team that always gets better as the season goes. So I suspect that, like any other Iowa State team, they have significantly improved since the last time we saw them. I also suspect that they will be a better team in their own environment.”

On having success on the road…
“They have adopted a point-to-point mentality. They don’t hang on to it for very long. If it was great, they don’t hang on to it for very long, and if was bad, they don’t hang on to it for very long. They understand that just because one point goes in a particular way, our sport does not allow us [to hang on to it for very long]. Now, there are momentum shifts as you go, but there are no givens. The sport is too random by nature. The point-to-point mentality has helped them be somewhat successful on the road.”

On addressing the team about not having won in Ames since 2007…
“We haven’t talked to them [about Iowa State] yet. We’ve talked a lot about us. We think that is where it starts and begins. I have given no ‘pre-game speeches’ yet. Starting [Tuesday] night, we’ll start to talk about what [we] want to do and how we feel like we can put ourselves in the best position to win. It is highly unlikely I will talk about anything in the past.”

On facing similar teams, Texas Tech and Iowa State, in back-to-back matches…
“I don’t know if it is a good thing. I can tell you that when you play a team that does one thing and three days later, you play a team that does something diabolically different, that is always a concern. The fact that both teams [Texas Tech and Iowa State] dig a lot of balls is not something we can really control in some ways. We are always more interested in the things that we can control. You just know, though, when go to play an Iowa State team, they are going to dig a lot of balls and you got to prepare yourself for long rallies.”