Sand volleyball digs for win

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ULM Hawkeye

The sand volleyball team got a win over the University of Alabama-Birmingham Thursday in a close game in the Warhawks’ home opener.

The Warhawks defeated the Blazers by a score of 3-2, taking the first, second and fourth pairings.

Head coach David Fischer talked about what it is like to get the close win.

“I feel a little relieved, I feel happy, I feel like maybe the momentum is shifting,” Fischer said.

The day started with an exhibition match in which UAB’s team, defeated a mixed team of ULM’s Iren Marinova and UAB’s Emma Schroer. UAB took to fifth pairing before ULM’s fourth pairing of Annah Cullum and Rachel Arnason won their match to tie the score. UAB won a hard fought third pairing.

The Warhawk pairing of Michelle McNamee and Hadley Swartz tied the score at 2-2 heading into the final match between each team’s top pairs. The pairing of Zuzana Markova and Marcela Araya brought the game home for the Warhawks. Every non-exhibition match was decided in straight sets.

Fischer said it was nice to see the fourth pairing of Cullum and Arnason “set the tone” for the rest of the team. He said the pairing of McNamee and Swartz was aggressive and composed. That was key to the team’s victory.  He said the top group of Markova and Araya proved why they are expected to have an opportunity to qualify for nationals.

Markova said that the game was important to get the win to correct the 2-9 record the Warhawks entered the match with.

“We got a ‘W.’ That’s important. We’ve been struggling a bit lately, losing closely 2-3. So it’s great to win,” Markova said.

Coach Fischer also said that momentum is one of the things preached to the team, He said he hoped for the team be able to move past the early losses and just focus on the future.This game was the first of only three home dates on the ULM schedule. The Warhawks will be back on the sand April 8, to face off against Tulane at ULM. LSU is on the slate to close out the Warhawks’ home matches on April 16.