The University of Rhode Island women’s volleyball team dropped three straight against New Mexico State, the University of New Hampshire and Brown University at the Holly Young Invitational this weekend.
The squad has lost four of their last five and was swept for the first time this season in their loss to New Mexico State.
“I pulled a trick out of my hat,” Schneck said. “I told them I would like them to email me on Sunday. I told them ‘I want you to answer this question or don’t bother coming to practice on Monday.’ The question was, ‘Do you think we should have ended up 0-3?’ To my surprise they all wrote very insightful emails which I read all day Sunday. Tomorrow [Tuesday] we’re going to meet after practice and they will speak on behalf of what they wrote.”
New Mexico State defeated Rhode Island in straight sets on Friday night, 25-16, 25-21 and 25-16. The Rams also had a tough double header on Saturday, which started with a five-set loss to New Hampshire, a team who was playing to get head coach Jill Hirschinger her 700th career win.
Rhode Island played Brown immediately and lost in four sets. The first two sets went to the Bears, 25-17 and 25-19. The Rams made an effort to come back, winning the third set decisively, 25-17, but their hopes were dashed when Brown held them off in the fourth match, 26-24.
“New Hampshire had more desire to get their coach the win,” Schneck said. “The schedule is not kind. We played New Hampshire at 2:30 then turned right around and played Brown at 4:30. The team looked gassed against Brown. But Brown had a game at 11:30 and then played us at 4:30. They had an opportunity to get some rest, but we all play the same amount.”
Junior Franki Darnold had 18 kills against Brown to lead the team and Sophomore Callan Kinnan had 44 assists. However, the Rams posted only a .211 hitting percentage. With formidable A-10 teams in George Washington, Dayton and Saint Louis coming up, Coach Schneck thought this past weekend was a welcome wake-up call.
The Rams look to get back on track tomorrow night at George Washington, who they will face for the first time since being eliminated in the A-10 tournament last season. Rhode Island will continue their weekend road trip Saturday when they travel to Fordham.
“They all thought ‘we’re just going to show up and beat these teams,’” Schneck said. “After reading their emails they all have a head on their shoulders. Had we won last weekend we might have been complacent this weekend. This is what we’re together for, it’s the A-10. I’ll take those losses if it means wins in the A-10.”
The Colonials are also 9-4 on the young season and their roster features reigning Atlantic 10 Player of the Week Chidima Osuchukwu. Fordham is 0-13 on the year and has been shut out nine times with only six set victories.