We had our second tourney today, and squeaked by in pool play, winning all three matches. Wow, the kids were up and down the whole time. We dropped the gold semi, unfortunately, but I think this was the first time I really got to see the team's potential.
My libero made the observation that the team kind of procrastinates, meaning they put off getting points early on. It's like putting off doing your homework. She sure was right about that. We had one game where we were losing 1-7 and pulled it out in the end with a solid win. The sense of urgency just to get the next point is only there about half of the time.
Putting it that way was a win in its own right, because it was kind of a breakthrough that brought the best out of several kids. I saw a lot of cheerleading and positive personality emerge. That will help in the long run.
In terms of skills and play execution, when the passing was on, they were solid. I'm going to have to cut some of the video together to show them this. When they execute quickly, they don't get blocked. It's that simple. I think I have to push my setter to mix it up just a little more, but clearly when they turn it on and pass well, it's solid. I always had a lot of hitting success with my quick little teams of previous years using the swing offense, and I can see little glimmers of the same thing with these taller girls when they're on.
So overall, while it was kind of a bummer to lose that last match, the day was certainly positive overall. We have one more regular tournament before we go to Baltimore for Easter weekend. I think that if they try to keep it fun, they'll do well. The fun thing about that tournament is that you always remember the time you spend with the team, regardless of how well you do. Looking forward to it.