HIBBING — The Hibbing Community College volleyball team might be 0-4, but Cardinal coach Kasey Palmer said the team is progressing nicely.
How much so will be seen today when Hibbing takes on Vermilion in an MCAC Northern Division contest, beginning at 6:30 p.m. in Cardinal Gymnasium.
The Cardinals took on two Division II schools over the weekend, taking one set from Lake Region, then losing all three sets to Dakota County.
“I played a few different lineups, and we’re playing alright,” Palmer said. “We started swinging at the ball better than we did at the beginning of the season. We’re slowly progressing each day.
“We started off going through so many different lineups trying to figure out who’s going to set and who’s going to play where we didn’t have time to focus on anything else. Everything happened in such a rush. Things have settled down, so we’re breaking things down and working on the little things.”
Palmer is hoping those tweaks pay off against the Ironwomen.
The Cardinals are 0-1 in the conference, so it’s a vital game for them.
“I’m expecting them to be better hitters than Mesabi,” Palmer said. “They’ve got quite a few bigger girls. Kaelyn (Kudis) is playing for them, so we’re expecting her to play all the way around, and be a solid force for them.
“She’s our main concern, but they also have a big middle who’s active, too.”
According to Palmer, Vermilion has only played one game this season, so she doesn’t have much to go on when it comes to scouting.
“They played Oak Hill Christian, which is just starting to put together a team,” Palmer said. “We don’t know too much about their game, and what rotation they’re going with. We’ll go out there and see what it looks like.
“We’re hoping for a big block in the middle for us. We know a little bit from a scrimmage at Mesabi. For us, we’ll focus on playing our game, and not settling for their game. That’s what we did with Mesabi, we slowed it down and played their game instead of our game.”
The key for Hibbing is speeding up its offense. That’s what Palmer is hoping her team learned from those games against Lake Region and Dakota County,
“We want to speed up our offense, and dig some balls,” Palmer said. “We play our best volleyball when we’re more fast paced, and we don’t think. When we slow it down, we start making mental errors.
“We need to keep our side fast paced.”