Minnesota volleyball pregame notes vs. Michigan

by Mark Heise

Kyla Roehrig and Lauren Gibbemeyer are the only two players sitting on the bench as the Gophers drill defensively, but both are in full uniform, so there’s no indication that Minnesota won’t be full strength tonight.

The Gophers may need all of their offensive options, as Michigan comes in to the Pavilion riding a four-match winning streak, and swept Minnesota the last time out.

Wolverines’ junior outside hitter Juliana Paz will team with senior middle blocker Beth Karpiak  and freshman outside hitter Alex Hunt to lead Michigan’s offense. Paz is averaging 3.32 kills per set, while Karpiak adds 3.09 and Hunt chips in 2.92.

Coach Mike Hebert said the Wolverines served well in the first meeting of the teams this year, knocking the Gophers’ offense out of system by breaking down the passing. Expect Minnesota to be ready for the Michigan serve this time around, as the Gophers named it as the main concern from the first meeting.

No. 12 Minnesota currently sits alone in second place in the conference standings, a half-game above No. 16 Illinois, who has five losses compared to the Gophers’ four. Michigan will be the final ranked team Minnesota plays this regualar season, and the Illini have already played their final ranked team.

A final note before we go to lineups, this will be the final bloag of this regular season, as I am covering both volleyball and women’s basketball Sunday afternoon, and will be writing on deadline both games. I apologize for the inconvenience, but hopefully you can find another source for your information.

Oh, and it’s parent’s night here. It’s always fun to see the athlete’s parents. Lineups following these announcements.

Starting Lineup

MB: Lauren Gibbemeyer OH: Brook Dieter MH: Kelly Schmidt S: Rachel Hartmann OH: Pam Luiz OH: Kyla Roehrig L: Christine Tan