Minnesota volleyball vs. Notre Dame Pregame thoughts

Mark Heise

Well, it’s just me working today’s match, so those of you who have enjoyed Krista Chin’s in-depth analysis and dead-on predictions for the last two matches will have to bear with me. On the bright side, at least I made it all the way to the Pavilion today without anyone saying, “are you seriously wearing THAT? you can’t wear that.” Notre Dame might be receiving some votes following this weekend’s tournament. The Fighting Irish have played extremely well against tough competition, taking a set from No. 16 Cal Poly, and nearly knocking off No. 4 California yesterday, losing in a close five sets. Notre Dame’s freshman libero Frenchy Silva has looked impressive thus far, boasting a dangerous jump-serve that Minnesota will have to be aware of. But on the other side, the Gophers have a distinct advantage up front, as Kyla Roehrig, Kelly Schmidt, Lauren Gibbemeyer and company have been blocking extremely well all season long. Gibbemeyer has played like the offensive leader she has become this tournament, and will be someone Notre Dame will have to watch closely. (Side note, I just missed getting drilled in the face with a ball… I nice reminder that there are safer jobs out there!) Prediction: As Roehrig has taken swings on both the right and left side during warmups here, I’m going to guess that we get a chance to see senior Katie Vatterrodt for the first time this weekend at some point today, probably on the left side. That’s all for me, no mid-match analysis today, but I will try to put up a post-game, once I finish my paper-edition. If you want to see the action live, tune in to the Big Ten Network today, as the big media guns are in-house. Starting Lineup: DS: Jessica Granquist MB Lauren Gibbemeyer OH: Pamela Luiz MB: Kelly Schmidt S: Rachel Hartmann OH: Kyla Roehrig L: Christine Tan