By Daniel Hill
The Baylor volleyball team has been busy traveling lately.
After being in Hawaii last weekend, the team is now in Louisiana for four games in two days in the Big Daddy’s Invitational.
“Of course, you have two games, so it’s going to be more exhausting,” senior Alyssa Dibbern said. “But you are supposed to leave everything you have on the court every time you play. So I mean in that sense, two games will be tiring but at the same time, we are leaving everything on the cour. So we’ll do awesome and we’ll be fine.”
With four matches in two days, the team will experiment with its lineup to find alternative winning combinations on the court.
“We are going to be playing under a lot of lineups and a lot of people throughout the tournament,” head coach Jim Barnes said. “It is perfect for us because we haven’t been able to play a lot of our backup players and so we will this weekend, and we’ll see what they can do.”
The Bears have a number of mainstay players that have seen a majority of the playing time so far this season.
However, there are other players who will use the extra playing time in the Big Daddy Invitational to to try to earn a spot in the rotation and contribute.
“You are really hoping to sweep because you don’t want to add more games,” Barnes said. “It’s tough to play two games in one day, and we’re doing that back to back. So that is tough on the players, but because we have depth, I think it is to our advantage.”
McNeese State, which is hosting the tournament in Lake Charles, is Barnes’ alma mater.
“You know I’m excited to be back home,” Barnes said. “A lot of the alumni I coached back there as well for six years, and so a lot of kids I’ve coached are going to be there for alumni weekend and family. So it will be really nice to see everyone.”
Along with McNeese State, Baylor will take on Arkansas State, Bethune Cookman and Hampton.
The team is off to a winning start this season with a 6-1 record with their only loss being to No. 9 Hawaii in Honolulu.
“I feel like it’s been a great start,” senior middle blocker Torri Campbell said. “We’ve learned from that loss to Hawaii, and we are taking that and applying it to all of our next games. The games that we have this next weekend are going to definitely improve our mental toughness”.
Baylor begins play at 11:30 a.m. today and ends play at 7 p.m. on Saturday.