Four matches in Mitchell, S.D. is all that stands between the Montana State University-Northern Skylights and the start of the Frontier Conference volleyball season.
Today and Saturday, the Skylights (4-4) will wrap up nonconference play with matches at the Dakota Wesleyn Tournament. MSU-N takes on Valley City State and Dakota State University today and Dickinson State University and York College of Nebraska on Saturday.
Last weekend, the Skylights went 2-2 in Billings and could have easily gone 4-0. Northern lost a pair of heartbreaking five setters, and MSU-N head coach Bill Huebsch is expecting the same type of competition this weekend in South Dakota.
“I think it will be more of the same as far as they types of teams we face,” Huebsch said. “Dakota State is a really good team and Valley City and York are young, but very talented. One of the best things about this last three weeks is we are seeing so many different teams and different styles, that nothing we’ll see in our conference will surprise us.”
Huebsch is also looking at this weekend’s matches as one more chance to prepare for conference play, which starts next Friday in Havre. Huebsch will be looking for more consistency from his players, more focus and he’ll be narrowing down starting spots and rotations.
“We won’t experiment nearly as much this week,” Huebsch said. “We’re focused in on each players roles and we’ve pretty much found where everyone fits on this team. This weekend, we want to gout and play four solid matches. We need to be more consistent game-to-game, match-to-match. I’ve been really pleased with how it’s gone so far, but we need to be even more consistent and make sure we play better this week than we did last week in Billings.”
The Skylights square off against Valley City today at 12 p.m. and Dakota State at 4 p.m. On Saturday, Northern takes on DSU at 8 a.m. and York at 9:30 a.m.