Senior Kelsey Biltoft cracked a smile and joined her teammates in laughter after blocking head coach Leanne Williamson in practice Tuesday.
It was a light-hearted moment in an energy-filled practice that showed the difference a week can make in sports.
Just one week prior, the Coyotes’ practices were focused on intensity and team chemistry. Williamson was stressing “consistency” to her players, and her players were demanding consistency from themselves.
On Tuesday, Williamson was stressing “positivity” and “fun.”
“It’s easier to practice after you’ve had some wins,” senior Sydney Dimke said.
The Coyotes found winning ways Saturday in Arizona, defeating California State-Northridge and Florida A&M in straight sets.
It was quite the bounce back from being swept the weekend before in a Wyoming tournament.
“Energy is something we talk about all time the time,” junior Lindsey Brown said. “We had energy consistently in our three matches. We definitely gained a lot of confidence this weekend, and we’ll keep that rolling into this weekend.”
Both Brown and Dimke identified their defense as their biggest improvement from Wyoming to Arizona.
Defense is what Williamson stressed all week prior to Arizona and she was proud her girls took it to heart.
It was the intention of the coaches to schedule tough matches early in the season, that way improvement would need to happen rapidly.
“We had to remind our players that we were doing everything for a purpose,” Williamson said. “We scheduled hard so we could improve early on. That way, come conference weekend, we can start becoming a better team.”
The Coyotes travel to their third consecutive weekend tournament in Grand Forks, N.D., beginning Friday morning.