Email This Page
2008 UMBC Volleyball Schedule and Prospectus Now Available
The Retrievers will face three opponents for the first time ever during the two-day competition, as they take on the Mountaineers of Appalachian State, Coyotes of South Dakota, Eagles of Eastern Michigan, and the host Tribe in
Blanchard’s team will also host a tournament at the RAC Arena for the first time since the 2003 season as the Retrievers welcome first-time opponent
After facing NJIT for the first time in 2007, UMBC will travel to Newark, N.J. in 2008 for a two-day tournament hosted by the Highlanders from September 12-13, where they will face the likes of Loyola and Sacred Heart before battling some strong competition at the WVU Volleyball Classic the next weekend from September 19-20 in George Washington, UNC-Greensboro and the host Mountaineers.
“Our schedule is considerably more challenging than last year,” Blanchard said. “We felt that we needed to challenge ourselves early on in the season, but we still feel that every match on our schedule is winnable. The competition that we face should help us get a little more prepared for the conference schedule.”
The Retrievers begin conference play at home on October 3, when they will face the New Hampshire Wildcats and, until the time of the conference tournament in late November, will face just two non-conference opponents in Towson and Delaware during mid-week matches.
“I like some things that we’ve done with our schedule this year in regards to recovery time,” Blanchard said. “Where last year it seemed like we were playing a lot of matches every week, this year we’ve spread out our non-conference matches and put them on the schedule on days where we’ll have plenty of recovery time before our next match.”
Blanchard and the Retrievers will also face Howard, Villanova, James Madison, and
“The nice thing about being in a small, seven-team, conference is that we have more time to train before starting conference play,” the coach said. “In other, larger conferences with 12 or more schools they need to start conference play a week or even two weeks earlier than we do. With that extra week we can continue to train at a high level and get our systems and mechanics in place, which is especially helpful to the newcomers.”
The Retrievers will bring in four new players and return seven letterwinners, four of them regular starters, as well as the starting libero for the 2008 season. Junior Sarah Ball, the 2005 America East Rookie of the Year, and redshirt freshman Sarah Hill make up the remainder of the 13-player roster and Blanchard will enter his fourth season at the helm of the women’s team, while assistant coach Brianna Koche will enter her second season with the Retrievers.