Women’s Volleyball: UConn sets sights on Butler and Xavier rematches 

UConn women’s volleyball competes against St. John’s on Nov. 4, 2023 at the UConn Volleyball Center. The Huskies got swept 0-3 for the third match in a row. Photo by Skyler Kim/The Daily Campus

The UConn women’s volleyball team is wrapping up their season in the next couple of weeks with just four competitions left until the Big East Championship later this month.  

With just two more weekend series left until the group bids their farewell, the Huskies will gear up for the final push. The first challenge of the upcoming weekend will feature Butler, one of the two conference teams UConn has beaten. When the pair faced off earlier this season in mid-October, UConn emerged victorious in a 3-1 win. The squad will hope for a similar outcome this weekend as they have spent the better half of the season perfecting their gameplay on both offensive and defensive fronts.  

Although October’s matchup resulted in a win, it was not an easy contest for the Huskies. The Bulldogs’ skill level was on par with the Huskies as neither team was able to secure a scoring margin of more than a few points. Despite its three set wins, UConn only secured these wins by a lead of two or three. It will be critical for UConn to remain on its toes this weekend and refrain from any attacking errors.  

Since their previous matchup, both teams have only secured one win and will each be fighting to prove themselves.  

While on the court, the Huskies should be wary of junior Mariah Grunze, a team leader with an impressive 333 kills. On the UConn side, Emma Werkmeister will continue her role as a team leader and will work to match any offensive plays from the Bulldogs.  

Following the Butler contest, the Huskies will prepare for Xavier, currently No. 3 in the conference. The Musketeers have been a dominant force on the court this season and will be walking into the matchup on a three-game winning streak.  

Historically, UConn has swept Xavier but the tides turned this season, as the Musketeers were able to swiftly dismantle the Huskies. In their contest earlier this season, Xavier was able to gain significant momentum from the start and prevented any chance of a UConn recovery. The contest yielded several attack errors from the Huskies and significantly hindered their ability to gain traction on the scoreboard.  

Even though the Musketeers have had a dominant season, they are not an impossible opponent. The group unexpectedly fell to the No. 6 seat, DePaul in late October. While the loss to DePaul was an unusual outcome, the Huskies should use any weakness in the Xavier lineup to their advantage.  

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