Redhawks coach not happy with loss to MSU

Sunday, September 24, 2006

A night after Southeast swept Tennessee-Martin, it lost in four sets to the Racers.

The mood of Southeast Missouri State volleyball coach Renata Nowacki did a 180-degree turn in a span of less than 24 hours.

Nowacki was all smiles Friday night after the Redhawks opened Ohio Valley Conference play with a dominant sweep of visiting Tennessee-Martin.

But Saturday afternoon, Nowacki was down in the dumps after Murray State came into Houck Field House and beat Southeast 30-15, 30-27, 16-30, 30-21.

"I am very disappointed in the way our team played this afternoon," Nowacki said. "We didn't execute our game plan."

Nowacki wanted her team to get off to a fast conference start by sweeping the homestand.

But, she surmised, "Protecting our home court was more important to the coaches than it was to the players."

Southeast fell to 7-8 overall and 1-1 in OVC play. Murray State, off to its best start in school history, improved to 10-2 overall and 2-0 in the conference.

The Racers are thriving despite being predicted to finish ninth among 11 teams in the OVC's preseason poll. Southeast was picked fourth.

"We've been working hard and preparing for this weekend," said Murray State coach David Schwepker, whose squad won its conference opener Friday night at Eastern Illinois.

Added Schweper, a Southeast graduate and former Southeast assistant: "What I like about this team most is how they work together, on the court and off the court."

Leopold High School graduate Holly Jansen had 15 kills for the Racers, as did Alison Mugler.

Southeast got 15 kills and 18 digs from Jackson High School product Jessica Keoper. Brenna Schlader added 11 kills.

Setter Jamie Baumstark had 41 assists and 11 digs. Also reaching double figures in digs were freshman Molly Davis with 17 and Alyssa Aston with 13.

After having a .257 attack percentage against Tennessee-Martin, Southeast hit just .143 Saturday. In only the third game did the Redhawks hit better than .091.

Southeast returns to action Friday with an OVC match at Eastern Kentucky.

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