Lions looking to tourney for confidence

This Friday marks the beginning of the Southwestern Oklahoma State Classic at Southwest Oklahoma State University in Weatherford, Okla.

It will be the Lion’s final volleyball tournament of the season before the MIAA Tournament Nov. 6-10.

The tournament is comprised of four other schools: Southwest Oklahoma State University, Texas A&M University-Commerce, Arkansas Tech University, and Cameron University. The Lions will play three matches in two days, with Arkansas Tech being the only team against which they will not compete.

Lions head volleyball coach Chris Willis, who is in his fourth year as the Lions’ head coach, is a bit disappointed with his team’s conference record (1-6) and hopes his team will use the upcoming meet as a way to bolster its confidence.

“We are in the toughest conference in the country,” Willis said. “So, naturally, I am a little disappointed and I think the players are, too. But I have every reason to believe that we can turn it around in the next few weeks and play well until the end of the season.”

Willis said the team’s ability to finish matches needs to improve.

“It’s all a matter of having competitive greatness in the gym, and then being able to take that out on to the court,” he said. “If we are given the opportunity, we need to start seizing the victory for ourselves.”

Probable starters for the Lions include seniors Amy Barnicle, Ashley Wright, Teyoni Wilson, and Sarah Hoffmeister, juniors Sarah Joles, Ashley Hill, Cherie Baugh, and Katie Gage and sophomore Erin Mitchem.