After finishing 19-1 in the regular season, Kentucky earned the No. 2 overall seed in the NCAA Volleyball Tournament. Not only is that the highest seeding UK has ever been given, but it puts a spotlight on how dominant they’ve been this season.
UK Head Coach Craig Skinner doesn’t believe the team is anxious, however. In fact, as each team arrives into Omaha, Skinner feels his squad is motivated just to compete.
“I think by the time Thursday rolls around, our team is gonna be real fired up to play…you can get the feel of the tournament, seeing a lot of teams around and their coaches and people you know, so just a chance to be here in Omaha and compete is exciting and can’t wait for it,” he said.
Of course with their dominant season leading them into an unchartered spotlight, expectations of a deep run are cemented into the minds coaches and players around the program. Coach Skinner doesn’t think this is something new, however, as the team has always been on the national scene ready to take advantage of a season like this.
“This group of seniors…even at the beginning of the year when we didn’t know if we were gonna play or not, they had a lot of expectations, so we’ve been dealing with that for a few years now. It just seems like it’s the next chapter,” he said.
The Cats have never advanced past the Elite Eight, so that will surely be on their minds in each game. They begin their run tomorrow at 7 p.m. against the winner of Illinois State and UNLV. The match will be televised on ESPN3.