Volleyball in South Carolina for final tournament before MAC schedule begins

The Central Michigan women’s volleyball team has one final road trip to complete before it begins league play.

The Chippewas travel to Charleston, S.C., for the College of Charleston Invitational in their final tune up before they take on Eastern Michigan Sept. 23.

Following a 1-2 weekend, the Chippewas will look to get off on the right foot at 4:30 p.m. today when they play Radford.

Senior Lauren Krupsky said the team has been practicing hard in order to avoid some of the errors that plagued it in last weekend’s tournament. She said the key to finishing off games will be by not giving easy points to their opponents.

“If we take those errors out, we’re a really good team,” Krupsky said, “so we just need to work on those finite things and we’ll be good to go.”

Krupsky finished last weekend with 41 kills and looks to continue her stellar offensive play against Radford, who boasts a strong offense themselves. Coming off a three-match winning streak, the Highlanders had three players average more than three kills in their previous match.

Managing the small things will be crucial in the second match of the tournament, when the Chippewas play North Florida at 10:30 a.m. Saturday.

The Chippewas look to exploit a weaker North Florida offense that has limped its way to a .125 hitting percentage this season.

CMU will look to junior Kaitlyn Schultz on defense, as she is one of four players who is averaging almost a block per set.

Head coach Erik Olson said that this will be an important weekend as the team prepares for the start of the MAC season in which it was picked to win the West Division.

“I am thinking about it a little bit, but we’re focused on our next opponent and focused on us,” Olson said. “Meanwhile, some other teams in the MAC are doing great things to so we need to get some of those W’s against those significant opponents.”

The final match of the weekend will see CMU facing off against host College of Charleston, which enters the weekend with a 7-4 overall weekend.

The Panthers enter into the match coming off a strong 2009 season that saw them qualify for the NCAA tournament. Their offensive contributions are led by senior Whitney Russell, who leads CoC with 4.2 kills per set.