Volleyball looks to bounce back in Sycamore Invitational


Central Michigan University Volleyball Head Coach Mike Gawlik advises the team during a time-out during the CMU vs. Indiana State game in McGuirk Arena on Sept. 8. 

Following a 1-2 showing in the Chippewa Invitational last weekend, head coach of the Central Michigan volleyball team Mike Gawlik was less than satisfied with his team's performance. 

"I thought that there wasn't a lot of really good things things from the past weekend," Gawlik said. "When we were playing at our top speed, I felt that we are good enough to win a lot of games." 

CMU has a shot to bounce back at another weekend round-robin tournament this weekend at the Sycamore Invitational in Terre Haute, Indiana. Over the course of Friday and Saturday, the Chippewas will face Green Bay (3-4), St. Louis (0-6), and Indiana State (4-2). 

Gawlik stressed that following the Chippewa Invitational, CMU must emphasize consistency in every set of a match.

"The one thing we came out saying that we need to do a lot better is consistency," Gawlik said. "With a young team and a little bit more youth on the floor, I think that finding consistency throughout three, four, five set matches will be really important for us. 

Game 1: Green Bay, 10 a.m. Friday

CMU is slotted for the early 10 a.m game against the Phoenixes, a team that Gawlik says the Chippewas match up well against. Green Bay is off to 3-4 start early in the 2018 campaign with wins against Southern Illinois, Seattle and South Dakota State.

"They have a couple of really top-notch players that we're going to have our hands full trying to defend," Gawlik said. "But, I think we match up well with them, they play team volleyball and we're right up there with them."

Game 2: St. Louis, 2 p.m. Friday

Despite the 0-6 record, Gawlik was quick to defend St. Louis as a good team with a tough schedule. Four of the Billiken's six losses have come at the hands of teams ranked in the top 100 in the country for in RPI. Out of the six losses, St. Louis has only won a one set. 

"St. Louis is an interesting team in that I think they're really talented," Gawlik said. " I think they're better than their record indicates and that's one of the things we'll talk about with our team how you can't judge a team by its record."

It will be just the first match of the day for St. Louis while CMU will have a quick turnover from its first game against Green Bay, an turnover that Gawlik hopes will go smoothly. 

"No matter what happens in the first match, whether we win or we lose, we have to turn around and reset for another good game." Gawlik said. 

Game 3: Indiana State, noon Saturday

The weekend finale against Indiana State on Saturday will mark the Chippewas third game in 26 hours. Host team Indiana State enters the weekend with the only winning record in the field of 4-2, with wins against Liberty, Purdue Fort Wayne, North Florida and Winthrop.

"It's a pretty fast weekend for us, probably one of the fastest weekends I've ever been a part of," Gawlik said. "Mentally, we're going to have to compete real fast.