For the second consecutive weekend, the Hoosiers have come out of a tournament unscathed.
IU volleyball defeated Campbell and San Francisco in a trying first day Friday before concluding the weekend with a sweep of Columbia and Princeton in straight sets to give the Hoosiers a 7-0 start to the season and the title of San Francisco Invitational champions.
This is the sixth time in school history that the Hoosiers have reached the 7-0 mark.
“Some of our freshmen, I think they have ice in their veins,” IU Coach Sherry Dunbar-Kruzan said. “They are very resilient, they stay very calm on the court, they come in and put an imprint on the match, and that is a big deal for freshmen to be in this kind of environment and have four big-time matches in two days.”
IU hit a smoldering .500 in the three-set match against Princeton, which is good enough for the third-best hitting percentage in school history. This number was aided by a dominant first set in which the Hoosiers compiled 20 kills and hit .667.
Senior outside hitter Allison Hammond and senior middle blocker Jazzmine McDonald led the Hoosiers in the Princeton match. Hammond contributed 14 kills on 21 attempts, and McDonald added eight kills with no errors en route to her having a .727 hitting percentage.
“We set goals before each match, and we were set on having this match at the pace we want to play with our speed and teamwork,” Hammond said. “This whole weekend was a team effort, and that is what I love most about this weekend.”
Senior setter Megan Tallman racked up yet another 30-assist match in the win against Princeton. She finished the tournament with 3,130 assists for her career and moved into the fifth spot on the Hoosiers’ all-time assists list.
In addition to IU’s offensive prowess that was on display over the weekend, senior defensive specialist and libero Taylor Lebo thinks the team should be lauded for their defensive effort.
“I think it is fearlessness, and we practice that on a consistent basis, going for balls that are incredible plays,” Lebo said. “It was fun to play this weekend, and our block did so well, which made it easy for us to play defense around.”
Lebo’s confidence that the team would leave the weekend with its undefeated record still intact proved to be warranted, although an undefeated record wasn’t achieved without a bit of a scare in the first match of the tournament.
Campbell took IU five sets in the Hoosiers’ closest match of the young season. The Fighting Lady Camels led 2 sets to 1 after three sets, but the determined Hoosiers claimed the final two sets. Campbell finished the tournament 2-2 with wins against Columbia and San Francisco.
“The only time I thought our team looked a little stressed was against Campbell,” Dunbar-Kruzan said. “I thought we looked a little tight and our composure wasn’t as good as we wanted it to be. I didn’t think we made in-game adjustments as well [but] we won. We talked about how we have to have that identity out there and a calmness.”