Saying this past weekend was exciting would be an understatement. Not only was it our home opener against Stanford, we finally hosted the Nike Big Four tournament after two long years of anticipation. There's nothing better than four great teams all playing under the same roof, especially when that roof happens to be Rec Hall.
It was a long preseason and we were all ready to put ourselves to the test against other top-ranked teams. This is what we work for all year. None of us could wait for the challenge. Monday rolled around and campus was buzzing. The air was thick with excitement. It was the home opener for football, the pep rally, and the Nike Big Four; what more could one ask for? Home games also mean the opportunity for us to see our friends and family. For many of us we saw our parents for the first time since the start of preseason. This, in addition to the commotion around football, we had to work extra hard to stay focused on what was important. We had a week of productive practices and preparation, and finally it was show time.
On Friday night we played Stanford. It was a long and grueling match against a great team. This was probably the longest match of many of our careers, lasting almost three hours. It was exactly the test we were asking for. A three-hour match does not only test your endurance, but tests your mental toughness and will to win. It is safe to say we passed that test, coming away with the W in five sets. Our next opponent was longtime rival, Texas. Although many of us were fatigued from the preceding match, we had to stay strong and prepare ourselves for Texas. We won the first set against them, but like coach always says, one set is not the match. We knew that they would play better the next two sets. After a three set slugfest we came away with another W. I couldn't have asked for a better weekend. For now, back in the gym to prepare for the remainder of preseason and the commencement of Big Ten competition! ONE TEAM!