MARQUETTE – The Northern Michigan volleyball team is coming off of a 21 and 8 season, and a trip to the GLIAC semi finals.
A main focus heading into the 2018 season is building a team culture. The program has a rich history of success, especially in the 1990s, and when you walk in Vandament Gym, there are banners to prove it. The Wildcats are hoping to add another one to rafters this season.
“I talked about how not one of them, in terms of team success says who was on that team,” said Head Coach Mike Lozier. “Regardless if you’re on the court, off the court, whatever your role is, it’s important that you do it to the best of your ability, because when we do earn that banner, when we are raising something next year, they feel like they were a part of that. Everyone is important, everyone is a part of that.”
“I think our culture this year is really coming together,” said senior DS, Rachel Braunschweig. “Last year was the transition year and I think this year we’re really buying in. As we push forward in the season, we know we’re going to face those tough times, but if we just work through them together I think we can have a great season.”
In the GLIAC preseason poll, NMU is predicted to finish third in the North Division, but there has been a lot of turnover across the board, and with the addition of Wisconsin-Parkside, anything can happen.
“I hope we’re near the top but you just don’t know in this conference. It’s very tough. It’s very competitive, which is great. If you want to accomplish your goal of making it to the NCAA tournament, playing at a high level, you want to be a part of matches that are going to be hard, that you have to grind,” said Lozier.
“It’s the typical teams that are strong and put up a good fight. GLIAC is definitely a strong conference. We just need to treat every game the same, super important and just take each game as we go,” said Braunschweig.
The Wildcats will be in action on Saturday, August 19th in the green and gold scrimmage. The match begins at four o’clock. Northern Michigan opens the season on the road on the 24th in Springfield, Illinois. The full schedule can be viewed HERE.