Yellow/Blue Scimmage: What To Watch For
They might be teammates, but for one match, the South Dakota State volleyball team splits into two for the annual Yellow/Blue Scrimmage Saturday. The preseason tune-up starts at 7 p.m. in the friendly confines of Frost Arena.
Admission is free, providing an opportunity for the Jackrabbit faithful to see the team before it opens its 49th season in the UMES Tournament in Princess Anne, Md., Aug. 29-30.
For head coach Phil McDaniel, the Yellow/Blue Scrimmage is an opportunity to see the Jacks in a game setting.
“Finally, we get to put on the uniforms for something besides pictures. The Yellow and Blue scrimmage is a culmination of two weeks of intense, focused, and competitive practices,” McDaniel said. “The players are ready to get in front of our home crowd, and show them the strides we have made since last fall. This team is hungry for competition and they are focused on our objectives.”
Here are five things to watch for in the Yellow/Blue Scrimmage:
1. Three-year starting setter Lexi Fowler ran the SDSU offense and left a hole in the lineup when she graduated. Sophomore Brooke Leethem and freshman Jessi Henter take over now, running an offense that has two primary setters.
2. Margit Hansing enters her final year after suffering a season-ending injury in 2013 and is champing at the bit in 2014. The Urbandale, Iowa, native needs the scrimmage to show she is back and mesh with the setters.
3. The middle hitting corps will be a focus this season. With junior Wagner Larson and sophomore Tiara Gibson the group has the most experience. They led the Jackrabbit attack in 2013—Larson averaging 2.59 and Gibson 1.75 kills per set. Each also collected 60-plus blocks.
5. There are five true freshmen and two transfers on the Jackrabbit squad this season. The Yellow/Blue scrimmage will offer an opportunity to see where they fit. Some may have already seized a starting role (Henter) and others already have experience (Gerving, Nazya Thies), but others are new to the collegiate level (Jasmine Richardson, Ellie Benson, Samantha Boeck and Ashley Beaner).