The Eagles’ volleyball team has won three of their last four games. Sophomore Cathrine Murray has been a big component of that success. She has put up 48 kills total during those four matches, leading the team in three of those four matches.
The George-Anne recently got an opportunity to interview her, talk about her success and where the team is heading now.
The George-Anne: What’s been your motivation for playing so well lately?
A: “I was struggling a lot at the beginning of the season, and so I think I have been working twice as hard as I used to. My teammates have really been there for me through everything; always encouraging me, behind me. If I make a mistake, someone is always there to catch me. I think that’s the biggest reason for my success lately.
The George-Anne: How do you think your performance, individually, has affected the team’s overall play?
A: I think we were really struggling with offense so me being able to be successful, on the outside, has really brought the team up overall and given us a reason to fight. Our defense has been amazing, but if we don’t have anyone to put the ball up, there’s no point. I think our offense, overall, has really encouraged our defense to work harder and it gives them a reason to work harder.
The George-Anne: Where does this team’s mindset need to be before you enter the Sun Belt Championship?
A: We need to keep working harder. I think other teams in the Sun Belt are peaking: They’re in a slump or on their way down, where we are just getting started. Yeah, we struggled a lot, but that makes the success that much better. We need to stay disciplined and stay focused. I don’t think there’s a team in the Sun Belt that can beat us if we play our game right.
The George-Anne: I talked with Coach Wood and Stephanie Spencer some this semester and some of the things we talked about was: minimizing errors, playing together as a single unit and finding the right players to play at the right times. How important do you think it is for this team to stick together, no matter the outcome, win or lose, and play at their highest level?
A: I think it’s really important. Those are all exactly what we need to do; minimizing errors. In the beginning of the season, our Coach even said this: we have two opponents on the court: it’s us and them. We’re making so many errors that we can’t even give ourselves an opportunity. If one of us makes an error, there’s always someone there behind us to pick us up. I think that’s the most important thing: when we do make errors, we don’t continue to make errors and bounce right back. That’s how it’s been this weekend: no matter what happened, someone was there encouraging. And that’s been important: being together as a team.
The George-Anne: You guys have Appalachian State this weekend, and the University of Texas at Arlington. You have tough opponents down the schedule. How do you think the rest of the schedule will go?
A: I’m really optimistic about the rest of the schedule. From what I saw this weekend, like I said, I don’t think there’s a single team in the Sun Belt that can beat us. Everyone has been saying they’re really good, but that’s a big rival for us. As long as we can come out to play, and play our game right, I’m not worried about anything they can do to us.
The George-Anne: What’s the number one key for this team to win the Sun Belt Championship?
A: I think the number one key is bouncing back. We’re in the process of doing it right now where we’ve been losing, and now we’re bouncing back–we’re starting to win. But it’s within a game. When we make an error, it’s getting the next point instead of going down by four or five points. Even in games this weekend, we were down zero-to-four, zero-to-five in the beginning, and we came back and won by a large amount. I think that’s always important: being able to bounce back, being able to overcome the past and get the next point.