From a coach:
We are leaving tomorrow for our state tourney, and it is a huge goal to Three-Peat. It is hard staying on top….it was easier striving to get there….have any tips for me? We have probably the two best hitters in the state but weak setter and a great libero. Do you have any words of wisdon for me or them?
I can think of three areas that I would concentrate on:
– Serving. You need to be very smart about who and where you serve in the tournament. If you have scouted any of these teams you will know who the weak passer is. I’d very systematically go about serving them long/short/left/right – essentially work them hard and hope you force a lot of bad passes. In the absence of knowing who the weak passer is, make sure you are staying away from the libero, serving the front row hitters that are passing, and serving into deep corners and short spots.
– Scouting. It would be really nice if you had some scouting going on so you could prepare for each team in each of their rotations. You should know what the setter likes to set in each rotation, and where each of the hitters tendencies are. Get your block and back-row defenders in good spots on all those hitters.
– Mistakes. You have to keep telling your hitters (especially your outsides) that they don’t have to kill every ball. On bad sets or tough swings, just have them keep it in the court and live to play another day. If you can reduce the number of hitting errors you make, it sure helps.
Best of luck!