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Student-Athlete Summer Blog: Maggie Skjelbred #7

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We played two matches this week with another scheduled for FridayOn Monday we played Canada. It was a tough game for us and Canada had some really good players. However, we were able to keep pressuring them throughout the whole match.

The first set was really close, but we lost 21-25. In the second set we started really bad off and lost 11-25. The third set was also very close, but the Canadians were too strong and we lost 19-25. I got to play the whole game as an outside. After the game we were really disappointed, because it is a game we could have won if our game was more stable. In the second set especially, we lost easy balls that should not be an issue at this level. Our passing was really good the first set, but not good the second and the third set. My strongest contribution to this game was definitely serving; I had the only ace on our team and two big runs.

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The gym we played in against Canada


The next day we played Brazil, who won the last World University Games and is overall a huge volleyball nation. This game was played on the main arena in front of a big crowd and it was seen on TV, so my family back home was able to watch me play!

I was a starter for this match and the first set was definitely our best one. We played so even with Brazil and until the last few points of the game we had the lead. You could really see it in the eyes of the players and their attitude that they did not see this coming! However, they came out strong in the end and we lost 22-25. The next set started off really bad. We struggled in passing this set and the Brazilians didn't make many mistakes. We lost the set 17-25. The third set started off well and we played very even with them. However, passing was still not right and we couldn't get through in attacking. We still fought really hard, but the points didn't go our way. We lost this set 13-25, so the game ended 3-0 in favor of Brazil. Even though we lost, we were really proud that we were able to keep fighting until the last ball. It was so much fun playing at the main gym, because of the crowd, screen and all the cameras that were right in our face when you were serving. The screens would show replays, action shots and show how fast your serve was. My serve was actually the fastest one this game at 66 km/h! This game I contributed best in attacking with a hitting percentage of 0.280.

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The gym we played in against Brazil.


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Picture of our TV at home, where they are watching the game!

Life in the village is still pretty crazy. The food hall is enormous with so many options to choose from. There are people everywhere and it doesn't really feel like we get much down time. All we do is eat, train, play and sleep.

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View of the Athlete Village!
Since Algeria pulled out of the tournament, we only had two pool-games and we ended up in third place.  Our next game will be against Hong Kong China on Friday. So we got two days off, which we spent preparing for the game. In practice we worked a lot on passing, so hopefully in the game it will be good.

Wish us good luck!

Raise High!
Maggie

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