Looking to improve from last season, the Plattsburgh State Volleyball team expect be in the SUNYAC conversation this year.
The Cardinals finished last season on a losing streak despite starting out 5-3. The Cards ultimately finished the season (7-21, 1-8, SUNYAC).
The start of a new season means new players, a new team and a fresh start for PSUC.
PSUC head coach Jake Bluhm, who is now in his third year as head coach, is ready and excited to start the new season.
“We have an influx of new players that has already made tremendous strides,” Bluhm said. “We have been ready to get out there to see some competition rather than practicing against each other.”
The new additions bring a new style of play to the Cards.
Bluhm explains that as time goes on as they face off against different opponents, that they will find their identity and thrive in the right direction.
“We are trying to develop a style of play because we have a bunch of new pieces,” Bluhm said. “As the year goes on, the new pieces will find ways to play together and get better.”
Sam Colombo, a sophomore outside hitter, said this team is different from last season’s team.
“We needed better team work last year because we were not as close as we were this year,” Colombo said.
Sydney Gabriel, also a sophomore setter, said that the team is still learning.
“We need to feed off someone when they are doing well,” Gabriel said. “We have to step up and get on their level and bring the energy at all times.”
PSUC started the season on the road this past weekend at the NYU Labor Day Invitational, where they lost their first four games.
The Cards obtained their first victory on Tuesday night and improved to 1-4 on the season after beating St. Lawrence 3-0.
Colombo and Gabriel played a consistent game against St. Lawrence with a match-high 16 kills and also had a service ace. Gabriel recorded 24 assists that helped the Cards obtain the victory.
The Cards will continue their season this weekend on the road at the Wheaton College tournament by competing in another four games.
Colombo said that playing together will be a huge factor in the outcome of the matches.
“We need to stay strong mentally and just support each other through everything,” Colombo said.
Gabriel added that playing an entire game will be key to securing victories.
“We stopped playing halfway in the game last year,” Gabriel said. “With the chemistry we have this year, we are capable of pushing each other and finishing the game strong.”
Bluhm said he would like the team to improve their record, make the tournament and be in contention for a championship.
“We want to make SUNYAC this year.” Bluhm said. “If we can make to postseason play that would be a major step for this program and will put us in a great position going forward.”
Email Adonys Temple at email@example.com