Poor defense leads to Lady Rattlers loss

After the first day of the Florida State University/Florida A&M Volleyball Tournament in the FSU Tully Gymnasium, the Lady Rattlers lost to Western Kentucky University 0-3 (25-12, 25-10, 25-18) .

Katherine Huanec, a senior outside hitter and middle blocker, led FAMU (1-3) with six kills and seven digs. Dei’ Ja Martin, a freshman middle blocker, followed with five kills.

But Rattlers lacked defense and communication. WKU’s blocking was better, causing FAMU to have negative hitting percentages.

“Our defense helped us control the game,” said WKU’s Haley Bodway, a sophomore outside hitter. “Blocking and keeping balls off the ground keeps our team motivated.”

WKU head coach Travis Hudson said he was proud of his team’s defense.

“Any time you can cause a team to have negative hitting percentages, that’s good defense,” he said.

The Lady Rattlers have won one game this season, beating the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga. Head coach Tanio Trifonov said he realized two team characteristics are missing from the team: spirit and communication.

“Practice will be more intense and aggressive,” Trifonov said. “There were a lot of dropped balls. Lack of communication is a problem that we have had the past couple of years and we need to find a solution.”

The Lady Rattlers have a long season ahead of them and plan to work harder and communicate more in their upcoming matches.

“We didn’t come to the game mentally prepared,” said Milena Petrovic, a sophomore offensive hitter. “We looked tired.”

Huanec said, “We need to communicate more because we were hitting the wrong sets.”