Women's Volleyball Blog: Alix Klineman

Oct. 28, 2009

This season different members of the 2009 Cardinal Women's Volleyball team will send in their thoughts on the season and how the team is progressing. Check back soon for a new update!

Hi Everyone!

I think it's safe to say that last weekend was one of the most bizarre weekends our team has ever experienced in terms of volleyball scheduling. For those that didn't attend (or try to attend) our match last Friday against Arizona State, we were never able to successfully start the match because of a power outage that occurred during the middle of warm ups.

The gym flashed completely dark for about five seconds, and then the emergency lights (smart thinking, Stanford!) came on and dimly lit the gym for the remainder of the power outage. The lights went out at roughly 6:50 p.m., and we (Stanford, ASU, and our dedicated fans) waited in the gym for over an hour. While we were all a little disappointed that we were never able to play, that hour in semi-dark was pretty fun and entertaining!

The hour began with both teams trying to stay warm, despite the power outage. I think it's safe to say that the peppering that went on during this period was pretty bad across the board. I mean, imagine waiting to dig a ball that you can't really see until it gets about two feet away from you...regardless, it's pretty tough and the level of volleyball during this time was pretty low. After about 10-15 minutes, someone announced on a megaphone to the entire gym that the power could be back on in about five minutes, or much, much longer than five minutes. We would wait until 8:00 p.m. to see if the power came on, and if it didn't the game would be rescheduled for 3:00 p.m. the next day.

If you think the chaos and excitement stops there, you're wrong. After hearing that we could be waiting for nearly an hour, pretty much everyone gave up trying to stay warm. People sat on the floor, joked around, remarked about how crazy the situation was, watched our beloved band stream through the stands, and if you were me or Cass, you were scheming to figure out a way to steal that megaphone so we could get the entire crowd to sing 'Happy Birthday' to our assistant coach, Jay.

After finally catching John's attention long enough to ask if we could get the crowd to sing Jay 'Happy Birthday,' we had permission, but no megaphone. A few long minutes later, John came back, megaphone in hand! He delivered a few more updates about what we knew about the power outage (basically nothing), gave some props to the band, and then asked everyone in the gym to sing 'Happy Birthday.' A couple things that still stand out to me: A) I have never seen Jay so embarrassed. B) I have never seen so many people sing 'Happy Birthday.' And C) It was pretty freaking cool, even if Jay doesn't want to admit it. I will agree with Jay, however, that having the Dollies come up and dance next to you can be somewhat embarrassing, and I don't blame you for staying in your seat on that one.

Eventually, time passed and we were informed the game would not take place. Through all of the excitement, I don't think anyone looked ahead to the next 24 hours. Most people's thought processes went something like this: Wait, I have midterms this week. Wait, we have to go on the field at half time of the football game tomorrow. Wait, I was going to study tomorrow. Wait, we have to play tomorrow. Wait... No need to go on, the point is, we all realized very suddenly that the rest of our weekend would go very unaccording (yes, I just made that word up) to schedule.

For the remainder of the weekend, we crammed in some limited studying time, hung out with our committed recruits (which, by the way, we are very excited to have join our team next year!), played two more games, and studied some more. We were lucky to come out of the weekend unscathed, and with two more wins, we now are tied for first in the Pac-10 and are ranked No. 4 nationally.

While we are stoked about this, we also know that we didn't improve during the week as much as we should have. Coming off a loss at Oregon, we should have been highly motivated and highly energized to get better as much as possible before we had another match. However, sleep deprivation and stress kicked and distracted us slightly from our long-term goal of 'Being a Champion.'

Lucky for us, every day is another opportunity. This week, it's a big one. We play USC and UCLA at home! With USC and UCLA, we can expect a hard fought match regardless of the outcome. They are two highly respected programs that will bring their best and we expect nothing less than a battle. We have already started off our week of practices much better, and I'm excited to see how it translates onto the court this weekend.

Anyway, we would love to have you come support us in one of our biggest weekends in Pac-10 play. See you at Maples!

Alix

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