Post by vballfreak808 on Aug 20, 2022 23:46:42 GMT -5
Did one for LBSU so here is the Pepperdine part. Watching the spring matches, service receive was a real issue so that was something I wanted to see if they improved that so far.
Notes: Everyone but freshman Tuufuli played, there was a point there was five freshmen in the line-up. Also noticed a few days ago, Cameron Baklenko was added to the team after being on the beach team.
Offense Setting: Zelaya will continue to be the starter for the Waves, has more consistency for sure. There were a few misconnects early on and passing was bad in the beginning but she did well. She did push the middles a bit and trapped them, later on didn't go to them as much further on but she will reconnect with them. Archer was a little rattled to begin as well but she will be a good one after Zelaya graduates, had a few nice connections with the middles.
Hitters: Not going to lie, I thought they didn't bring as much heat I thought they were going to. Even Ahrens. She got a good amount of kills but her hits and serve weren't as hard as she has in the past. She only played two sets and only played front row in the second but she produced well enough by hitting over and around the block. Guaranteed starter no matter what.
Chillingworth will be on the court as well, it's a matter of who else around her steps up. She got a good amount of swings for the game and was successful. She got to play six rotations which is something she has been working on and did good, passing broke down at times but it's nice to have her as an option in the back row. Preferably I'd hope for her to become a six-rotation opposite, but like I said it depends on the other hitters.
In the battle of Ammerman versus Hellmuth, I think Hellmuth should get the start, she has more consistency. The issue is Ammerman is more likely to take the opposite spot if Chillingworth stays on the left, but if Chillingworth is on the right then Hellmuth will take it. So it's very much depending on what Wong likes of course. Hellmuth had more overall power I thought but Ammerman crushed a ball to a LBSU player to end the match that had the crowd in shock. Shimaitis played on both pins, a little undersized at opposite and not as comfortable there, but working on her connections with the setters still.
The Waves middles are solid. Brown of course has been and will continue to be a threat offensively. Polk has some power and got some nice kills. She can hit in front and behind the setter, started off strong, just didn't get set too much at the end. Kennedi Patterson came in the last set and was effective right away. Hasn't fully connected so she hasn't go much power on the ball yet, but I've seen her in club and know she can pound it once she finds her groove. Overall Brown and Polk will be the starters and they will be a nice duo.
Serving: I'd say they did a good job. Watching R. Patterson with high tossing jump serve in the Pyramid was interesting. Her first few serves you could tell she lost the ball, serving both in the bottom of the net but eventually she got it. Zelaya, R. Patterson, Stanger served well.
Defense Blocking: The Waves are always a tall team and blocking is a strength. They did get a lot of touches and it helps being tall. LBSU was running a fast offense so it did throw the middles at times, going up late or not turning their hands towards the court. But overall them and LBSU were strong there.
Back-Row: Thought the back row defense was alright, some great digs but some misses IMO. The loss of Shields will be noticeable but I think that Stanger has improved a lot since the spring. I was a little shocked to see her as the starting libero, thought Riley Patterson would have got it right away but both are fighting for the spot. Personally think they are above Hames. I did not think any of these liberos were bad by any means, I just think the Waves might struggle if their opponent can somehow get passed the Waves block.
Passing: Sort of similar to back row defense, I think passing was a huge issue to start. Set one was not great in serve receive. Set two was alright but the last two sets they adjust a lot better. It wasn't one particular person, it was the team as a whole. Still a work in progress but nice to see them improve throughout the game.
Line-Up Versus LBSU
Set 1 (L)
Set 2 (W)
Set 3 (L)
Set 4 (W)
Ahrens (DS: Hames)
Shimaitis (DS: Hames)
Hellmuth (DS: Hames)
Hellmuth (DS: R.Patterson)
Ammerman (DS: R.Patterson)
Hellmuth (DS: Stanger)
Ammerman (DS: Baklenko)
Overall: I think this team will still contend for the WCC title, top three team for sure, it'll be interesting to see how they handle their tough schedule.
These would be my starters: Outside: Ahrens, Hellmuth (DS: Stanger) Opposite: Chillingworth Middle: Brown, Polk Setter: Zelaya Libero: R.Patterson
My guess though Wong keeps Chillingworth at outside with Ammerman at opposite
Post by nectarflow on Aug 26, 2022 11:24:47 GMT -5
Pepp wins their first match of the season in 4 sets. They started slow and Ahrens didn't play after struggling in the first set. Hoping she's ok and would imagine they'll need her moving forward. Still good to pick up the win.
Post by nectarflow on Aug 27, 2022 22:06:54 GMT -5
Hopefully Ahrens fully recovers soon. It is promising to see them play the #1 team to 26-24 in the first set though with three freshmen in the lineup. They should be pretty competitive this year but that speaks to how good they can be in the next few years too, which is exciting.