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Sunday, April 14
The Indiana Daily Student

sports volleyball

Dunbar says Hoosiers need to ‘raise focus’ for weekend games

IU volleyball coach Sherry Dunbar said she believes her team needs to raise its focus to a new level in the second half of conference play.

“We have to find a way to win,” Dunbar said. “We’re pushing them harder, and they’ve got to start producing more if we want to turn things around. We can’t just do status quo of what we did the first round (of Big Ten play).”

The Hoosiers (14-10, 3-7) start the final stretch with rematches at home against No. 6 Illinois (16-3, 8-2) at 7 p.m. Friday and Northwestern (11-11, 2-8) at 7 p.m. Saturday.

Dunbar said having played each team once already helps with preparation in practice.

“We’re focusing on some things we’re seeing in film and really trying to change that about us,” she said, “and then re-watching matches that we’ve already played against these common opponents ... and see what we didn’t do well and what we need to do well against them second round.”

IU’s two opponents generate their offenses differently, with Illinois attacking mainly from the outside and Northwestern from the middle, Dunbar said.

“They’re total opposite teams, and we have to be prepared to play both of them,” she said.

The Fighting Illini have risen to No. 6 in the nation. Dunbar praised their hard work and discipline.

“There’s a reason they’re sixth in the country,” she said.

While the Wildcats have only won two Big Ten games, one came against the Hoosiers in a five-set affair on Oct. 11 in Evanston.

Junior middle blocker Sabel Moffett earned 24 kills at a .463 hitting percentage in that contest.

Dunbar said IU needs to perform consistently throughout the match to split the series with Northwestern.

“We played good in two sets against Northwestern, and we played bad in three,” she said. “We’ve got to turn that around.”

Dunbar said she also wants to get more players involved in the offense, including freshman hitter Shawn Hindman, who has missed time with injury.

“It’s going well,” Hindman said of her progress. “It’s getting better every day, coming in the gym, working hard and trying to get better every day so I can help the team as much as I can.”

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