Stephenville, Texas – St. Mary’s University volleyball coach Jenny Warmack-Chipman has observed that the top liberos often average between 5 and 6 digs per set.
After Saturday’s showing, junior Stephanie Flores had to be asking, “That’s all?”
“Flo had 14 after the first set,” Warmack-Chipman said, laughing.
Certainly looking like one of the best liberos going, Flores turned in a remarkable performance with 28 digs in a 3-1 victory over Cameron University in Tarleton State’s TexAnn Invitational.
It was enough for the San Antonio native to be named to the all-tournament team after leading all liberos with 77 digs over 17 games in the tournament.
St. Mary’s also faced Midwestern State University on Saturday, falling 3-2 to finish the tournament with a 1-3 mark.
Against Cameron, the Rattlers (3-6) looked like they were in midseason form, bouncing back from a 20-25 loss in the first set with consecutive victories of 25-20, 25-19, 25-19.
Senior setter Kori McCarver (San Antonio) posted 37 assists in the match, while senior outside hitter Kate Kershner (San Antonio) led the team with 15 kills. Junior middle blocker Kirsten Chapman (Jourdanton, Texas) and junior outside hitter/middle blocker Stephanie Proske (LaGrange, Texas) also recorded double-digit kills with 10 and 12, respectively. Freshman outside hitter/defensive specialist Karlie Ortega (San Antonio) added 16 digs.
The Rattlers picked up where they left off against Midwestern State, jumping to a 2-0 lead. But Midwestern State got hot, rattling off consecutive victories (25-10, 25-18, 25-6) to win in five sets.
Ortega led the Rattlers with 16 digs against Midwestern State, while McCarver had a team-high 11 kills and 24 assists. Sophomore setter Allie Murray (San Antonio) added 11 digs and 10 assists.
Warmack-Chipman said there was a lot to like about the Rattlers’ showing this weekend, from their passing to their setting to their hitting. Now it’s about finding some consistency to take the Rattlers to the next level.
“It’s that mental focus and the consistency,” Warmack-Chipman said. “That’s what we’re kind of learning right now. That’s the growing pains. Whether you did something well or something wrong, it’s figuring out that next play and just keep forging forward.”