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Royals' playoff appearance years in the making for some fans -9/30/2014, 10:34 AM

Chiefs offense gets rolling in rout -9/30/2014, 10:31 AM

California has four teams in the playoffs for the first time -9/30/2014, 10:31 AM

TMP golf finishes third at Hoisington meet -9/30/2014, 10:35 AM

Monarchs move to 14-10 -9/30/2014, 10:30 AM

Big 12 coaches react to firing -9/30/2014, 10:21 AM

HHS volleyball goes 2-3 in Newton -9/29/2014, 10:27 AM

HHS tennis places third at Garden City Invitational -9/29/2014, 4:16 PM

Tiger tennis finishes fall season 5-2 -9/29/2014, 10:27 AM

MNF for Chiefs -9/29/2014, 10:27 AM

Royals' starters rest in win -9/29/2014, 10:26 AM

KU shows Weis the door -9/29/2014, 10:26 AM

Jayhawks take the conservative route in their loss to Texas -9/28/2014, 9:43 AM

FHSU soccer cruises past SW Baptist -9/28/2014, 7:03 PM

Victoria takes advantage for close win at Ness -9/28/2014, 1:14 AM

Plainville grabs first win, beats TMP -9/28/2014, 7:02 PM

Area prep football roundup: Otis-Bison, Kinsley set record -9/28/2014, 7:02 PM

Wildcats roll -9/28/2014, 7:02 PM

Delton, HHS run past Garden City -9/28/2014, 7:02 PM

Tiger women's soccer picks up 1-0 win at Southern -9/28/2014, 7:02 PM

Tiger women's XC wins at Emporia State -9/27/2014, 7:12 PM

Kansas City clinches first playoff berth since 1985 -9/27/2014, 7:02 PM

Tigers take down No. 8 Pitt State -9/27/2014, 6:53 PM

Kansas linebacker Jake Love lives on instincts -9/26/2014, 11:06 AM

Like old times, Kansas State takes pride in stuffing the run -9/26/2014, 10:57 AM

FHSU women fall 2-1 -9/26/2014, 10:23 AM

Big win for Tiger soccer -9/26/2014, 10:46 AM

Tough test for Tiger football -9/26/2014, 10:23 AM

Hays High, TMP move to 4A -9/26/2014, 10:24 AM

One more win and Royals are in -9/26/2014, 10:47 AM

HHS XC second at McPherson meet -9/26/2014, 10:25 AM

Indian soccer snaps skid -9/26/2014, 10:47 AM

HHS golf clinches share of WAC title -9/26/2014, 10:48 AM

Monarchs, Cardinals seek first win -9/25/2014, 10:13 AM

Royals drop game at Cleveland -9/25/2014, 10:26 AM

UTEP football coach Sean Kugler hopes to build a program that can emulate Kansas State -9/25/2014, 10:13 AM

Indians hit the road -9/25/2014, 10:13 AM

Giants, Redskins trying to avoid steeper climb in East -9/25/2014, 10:13 AM

KVA prep volleybal rankings, Sept. 24 -9/24/2014, 10:26 AM

HHS soccer falls at Great Bend -9/24/2014, 10:26 AM

HHS takes third at Salina South Invitational -9/24/2014, 10:26 AM

No. 8 Washburn too much for Tigers -9/24/2014, 10:28 AM

Tiger defense continues to get stronger -9/24/2014, 10:29 AM

Two wins for TMP volleyball -9/24/2014, 10:27 AM

TMP soccer rolls to win -9/24/2014, 10:29 AM

Ventura dominates Indians as Royals push for postseason -9/24/2014, 10:28 AM

Sports Scores

Tuesday

Prep basketball

Boys

Atwood 76, St. Francis 65

Dighton 62, Oberlin 47

Hillsboro 50, Goodland 47

Lakeside 42, Lincoln 32

Minneapolis 68, Russell 35

Rock Hills 42, Natoma 37

Salina Central 62, Andover 58

Salina South 62, Sacred Heart 47

Sharon Springs 75, Leoti 38

St. John's Beloit-Tipton 57, Osborne 34

Sylvan-Lucas 61, Thunder Ridge 48

Girls

Dighton 44, Atwood 11

Dodge City 71, Hays High 28

Hesston 51, Goodland 18

Hoisington 60, Victoria 46

Hoxie 65, St. Francis 13

Lincoln 33, Lakeside 26

Minneapolis 47, Otis-Bison 24

Osborne 59, Wilson 34

Sharon Springs 63, Oberlin 42

Sylvan-Lucas 43, Natoma 41 (ot)

Tescott 41, Rock Hills 33

Trego 56, Leoti 27

Thunder Ridge 33, St. John's Beloit-Tipton 30

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SPOTLIGHT
Tiger volleyball looks to end struggles

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Tiger volleyball looks to end struggles

Published on -9/24/2013, 10:09 AM

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By CONOR NICHOLL

cnicholl@dailynews.net

Middle hitter Jenna Ulrich, libero Makenzie Weinman and outside hitter Madison Schwartz are roommates and four-year seniors for the Fort Hays State University volleyball team.

All three have started multiple years and earned all-conference honors. The trio has a daily opportunity to bond off the court and talk about the struggling Tigers, who are an unexpected 0-8 overall, 0-3 MIAA.

"Everybody on this team wants it so bad," Ulrich said. "We have got a lot of season, so it has definitely not slipped away, but you are definitely getting that taste of if we don't pick it up right now, it is not going to be the season that we want. We have seen glimpses of how amazing we are, and we know we can be there."

Virtually all of the returners' production has slipped from a 23-14 season in 2012, especially the seniors.

"Our seniors need to step up and be a lot more consistent," coach Kurt Kohler said.

FHSU has had some struggles at setter and a 6-2 offense this fall; last year, the Tigers ran a 5-1. Tonight, Fort Hays travels to Missouri Western State University (3-7, 1-1 MIAA) for a 7 p.m. contest in St. Joseph, Mo. Kohler labeled the year a "constant roller-coaster."

"Once we start winning some games, I think we will start winning a lot of them, but right now, we are just going through the motions," Kohler said. "We are going to have a horrible season if we don't change something."

The team opened 0-5 in Hawaii and then lost three straight conference matches. The Tigers have played just two ranked teams.

"We just didn't really come together in Hawaii as a team the way we should have," Schwartz said. "We weren't connecting very well, especially throughout the last game. We just need to pick it up as a team, work together and keep improving."

Ulrich averages 2.04 kills and 1.04 block per set with a .194 hitting percentage. Schwartz has 1.85 kills per set and is hitting .137, while Weinman averages 4.15 digs per set.

Last year, Ulrich was one of the MIAA's top players with 2.61 kills, 1.28 blocks per set and a .311 hitting percentage. Schwartz tallied 2.44 kills and Weinman had 4.50 digs.

Last Friday, Schwartz started a 3-1 loss to University of Central Oklahoma. She hit minus-.200 on 10 attempts. Freshman Haley Corkill came in and hit .120 with seven kills on 25 attempts.

On Saturday, it reversed in a 3-0 loss to Pittsburg State. Kohler benched Schwartz for the first game and started Corkill, who struggled in her first career start. Schwartz entered in the second set and led the team with a .333 average.

In addition, juniors Sam Ledy and Camille Hubert, veteran players, are hitting negative for the year. In 90 attempts this fall, Ledy and Hubert have 19 kills and 27 errors.

"How many kids on a consistent basis are hitting negative?" Kohler said. "We need to steal those jerseys from the other teams and start dressing our girls in those because as bad as we are hitting, we want them on the other side of the net, so they actually do help us. It can't continue the way that it has been going."

At setter, juniors Libby Ary and Kelsey Broadwell have ran the 6-2 offense, the only position that has changed from last year. However, there's sometimes a disconnect between setter and hitter. Kohler said Ary and Brodwell set the same three hitters every time.

"There is not a huge adjustment that should happen," Kohler said. "I believe our hitters are mentally making more out of running a 6-2 offense than what they need to. It's easy. We run it everyday in practice, so it's not like they don't see that stuff already."

However, Ulrich said there are times where she hits off two different setters.

"Just everyone is a little different," she said. "I think that also puts a little mental aspect in the game. One setter might shoot a (certain pass) a split-second faster than the other one. Personally, myself, I know that I think about my hits more than just playing."

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