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About The daily Nebraskan. ([Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-current | View Entire Issue (Sept. 25, 1998)
Huskers ‘can’t relax’ entering Big 12 play I
By Andrew Strnad
A volleyball season has four stages,
according to Nebraska Coach Terry Pettit
Stage one is the nonconference sched
Stage two begins tonight, as the No. 3
Comhuskers open Big 12 Conference
play against Iowa State tonight and
Missouri on Saturday.
The Huskers (9-0) cleared stage one
with relative ease, dropping only one
game during the nonconference schedule.
“I think we did almost everything well
(last) weekend,” Pettit said, “especially
our serving and blocking, which go
“We’re not a great volleyball team,
we’re great competitors.”
NU downed two ranked teams last
week, including No. 9 Florida in three
During the Huskers’ first nine match
es, they defeated five ranked teams,
including two-time defending national
Now, the Huskers enter Big 12 play,
which won’t be any easier.
No. 3 Nebraska vs. Iowa State, Friday, 730 p.m.
No. 3 Nebraska vs. Missouri, Saturday, 730 p.m.
Both matches at the NU Coliseum
With five ranked teams, Pettit regards
the Big 12 as the best conference in the
“I think it’s even better than I
thought,” Pettit said.
NU does get to open the conference
with two opponents that historically have
Iowa State (2-9) hasn’t beaten the
Huskers in 52 tries and last won a game in
Missouri hasn’t fared much better.
The Tigers have a 2-46-1 record against
the Huskers and haven’t beaten them
since Sept 20,1982.
Missouri (8-4) will come into the NU
Coliseum on Saturday having won four of
its last five matches.
Despite the Huskers’ dominance over
Missouri and Iowa State, junior middle
blocker Tonia Tauke refuses to take any
“You just can’t relax, you’ve got to
take a deep breath and keep on going,”
Lately, Tauke has become an offen
sive spark plug for the team, as oppo
nents have spent more time focusing on
the Huskers’ outside hitter.
The 6-foot-3 Tauke is fourth on the
team in kills and is hitting a solid .375.
“I think I’ve got a lot more going for
me, and that’s helping my teammates
trust me out on the court,” Tauke said.
As the Huskers head into the second
stage of the season, Tauke expects the
intensity level to go up in practice.
Last season, the Huskers rolled out
to a 4-0 start in the conference before
dropping four of die next six matches.
Tauke said that this year the team’s
focus and confidence will be there dur
ing the crucial stages of the conference
Pettit told the media during a
Tuesday press conference that he
expects this week’s practices to be
among the toughest of die season.
“It’s not a long season. We have 10
weeks left, and that means only 30 prac
tices,” Pettit said. “If we miss three, that’s
10 percent of our practices.”
Both matches begin at 7:30 p.m. at the
JUNIOR MIDDLE BLOCKER Tonia Tauke reacts to a point last season.
NU braces for Huard
HUARD from page 9
with the big play when he has to.”
Huard said the Huskies have been
watching film of NU’s victory over
Louisiana Tech, when the Husker sec
ondary gave up 590 yards in the air.
But that Is the last thing in the minds
of die defensive backs, Brown said.
“The defense wants to come out
and prove that we’re a good defense,”
Brown said. “I think people have start
ed doubting us a little bit We want to
come out and prove that we’re capable
of playing great defense against a top
Coats said consistency is impor
tant if the Huskies are going to move
the ball against Nebraska.
But attitude, he said, is another key.
“I know it’s Nebraska,” Coats said.
“But I’m not going to get caught up in
their winning streak and stuff. I’m just
going to look at the team and try and
dissect it. We have to go in believing
that they’re beatable.”
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NU gears for six-game homestand I
By Jay Saunders
Coming into this weekend,
Nebraska Soccer Coach John Walker
can’t help but have a case of deja vu.
Last year, the Comhuskers were 4
2 entering a month-long homestand.
One year later, the No. 21 Huskers
are 4-2 after a win Wednesday against
This weekend, NU starts a stretch
of six consecutive games at the Abbott
Sports Complex. The homestand
starts tonight at 7 against Loyola
Chicago. Sunday, Nebraska plays host
to Southwest Missouri State at 1 p.m.
“It is really ironic,” senior Lindsay
Eddleman said. “Hopefully it won’t
become a trend.”
Walker said although the situation
is the same, this year’s Husker team is
vastly different than last season.
Not only did die Huskers lose sev
eral players to graduation, but nine
players are in different positions. Only
Eddleman and fellow forward Kim
Engesser are in the same position as
they were a year ago. But Eddleman is
just returning from a foot injury that
has hampered her the entire year.
In addition, five freshmen have
Nebraska vs. Loyote-Chicago, Friday, 7p.m.
Nebraska vs. SMSU, Sunday, 1p.m.
Both matches at Abbot Sports Complex
seen considerable playing time.
“It is quite a bit different because
we have such a younger squad,”
Walker said. “We still have a good
team, but the team is not as experi
As if Walker didn’t have enough
problems to worry about, the injury
bug has bit the Huskers.
This week in practice, freshman
Najah Williams suffered a knee injury
and will be out at least this weekend.
Williams’ injury leaves 17 healthy
players for this weekend.
“We are still in the experimenta
tion phase,” Walker said. “It is difficult
when you have five players out”
Despite all of that, Walker said he
is comfortable with Nebraska’s situa
tion - because the Huskers are at
NU has only lost once in the past
three seasons at Abbott
“We have a good track record at
home,” Walker said. “After this home
stand, we will have a better idea about
In last season s homestand, the
Huskers won all eight games, outscor
ing their opponents 40-0.
But this year, senior Becky Hogan
said something is different
“I just think we might have lost
track of our goals,” Hogan said. “It’s
nice to be at home. It will be exactly
what we need.”
Whatever the ailment, Hogan said
a little home cooking could very well
be the cure.
Both Loyola-Chicago (5-3) and
Southwest Missouri State (1-5) are
The Ramblers have won three con
secutive games. Walker said Loyola is
being talked up as one of the most
improved teams in the region.
SWMSU is suffering from an
injury situation similar to that of the
Huskers. The Bears have been
outscored 19-6 in their six games.
But even though this weekend’s
opponents are not in the
NSCAA/Umbro Top 25 poll, Walker
said the Huskers cannot be compla
“Sometimes when you play a team
without a big name, there is a human
nature to have a drop-off in intensity,”
Walker said. “There is no reason for
Evans, Newcombe return for NU
EVANS from page 9
way to trick the coaches and doctors
into thinking it was 100 percent,”
Newcombe said. “That didn’t work,
and it probably turned out to be a good
The thought of handing off to
Evans adds to Newcombe’s excite
ment. The last time Evans played for
NU, Newcombe was in high school
Evans is also ready to play with
“We are both confident in each
other,” said Evans, who ran for 776
yards and 14 touchdowns as a fresh
man. “And with both of us back, they
won’t be able to key on just one person.
We will have all of our dimensions.”
The Huskers expect their biggest
offensive challenge yet against UW.
The Husky defense was impressive in a
20-10 win over BYU last Saturday,
holding the Cougars to 204 yards of
‘1 think they are die best defense we
have seen all year,” Newcombe said.
“They will challenge us offensively.
They do a lot of stalling before die ball
is snapped, which makes it hard to read i
But Evans thinks NU could catch
the Huskies off-guard - Washington
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has not seen NU’s injured players at full some big-play capability” Evans said,
strength this season. “I expect a victory. If I play well and
“I feel better about coming back for things ItfSJpen the way they should for
a game like this. I feel like I can bring everyone, we can win it”
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