Aggie volleyball aiming for success with its experienced core group

LOGAN – Volleyball season is underway, and Utah State head coach Grayson DuBose said his team returns a good core group from last season.

“Kayla DeCoursey, in my mind, has been the best opposite in the conference the last couple of years,” he said. “Lauren Anderson is as good as anybody in the conference as a hitter. I think our two middles of Carly Lenzen and Lauren O’Brien are really, really good. Rachel Gale has a ton of experience.”

The Aggies went 14-16 overall and 8-10 in conference a season ago, but the team is off to a better start this year, going 2-1 in the Arkansas Classic last weekend. The wins came against Louisiana-Monroe and CSU Bakersfield, but the team dropped its third match 3-0 to the Arkansas Razorbacks Saturday night.

The Aggies will be hosting a tournament of its own at the Wayne Estes Center this weekend. USU will play its first match against Pacific Friday night before its Saturday double-header against Montana State and UC Santa Barbara.

Head coach Grayson DuBose said the tournament will be fun, but “almost too tough.”

“It’s like visiting the old Big West days,” he said. “Santa Barbara is coming in, Pacific is coming in. And Montana State, they are all really nice volleyball teams. Santa Barbara and Pacific, they’ve had some really nice volleyball tradition over the years.”

DuBose said he expected to have a strong offense this season, which is what he has seen so far, but the question going into the first tournament was how the defense would perform.

“I think we learned our defense can be pretty good,” he said, “but it needs to be better.”

The team’s focus during the three matches this weekend, according to DuBose, will be preparing for Mountain West play, less than a month away.

“The biggest goal for us is we want to get ready for conference. We’re going to play Boise State and Colorado State, and these teams (in the tournament) will be good,” he said. “They are going to prep us for the (conference) teams.”

The complete volleyball schedule can be viewed <a href=”http://www.utahstateaggies.com/sports/w-volley/sched/ust-w-volley-sched.html” target=”_blank”>here</a>.

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