Quick, name a women’s indoor court sport. If you said basketball, you’re not alone, especially now, with the University of South Carolina’s women’s team garnering unprecedented accolades this season.
But basketball isn’t the only game in town. There’s also women’s volleyball.
If you enjoy games that combine action, strategy and athleticism, consider this: Volleyball players can jump high enough to stuff a basketball into a regulation-height basket. Then, consider attending the matchup between USC and Louisiana State University on Saturday.
Not sure what to look for? Here are some tips from Kim Hudson Williams, former head coach of USC’s women’s volleyball team and current volleyball on-air analyst for the SEC Network and coach of FCA Volleyball and Women’s Ministry.
• Matches are played the best of five sets. In the first four sets, the first team to score 25 points, with a two-point lead, wins. If a fifth set needs to be played it only goes to 15 points. “There’s no time limit, but a typical match will last 60-90 minutes,” Williams said.
• A point is scored on every play. There are no second serves.
• Watching the front-line players spike the ball over the net is exciting, but don’t miss the action going on in the back row. “The quickness and agility needed in those defensive positions is incredible,” Williams said. “It’s amazing to watch!”
• Those dives do hurt, but not as badly as they could. “Players are taught to lower themselves as they’re running toward a ball so if they have to dive, they won’t have as far to fall,” Williams said.
The match begins at 1:30 p.m. at Carolina Volleyball Center, 1051 Blossom St. For more information, visit gamecocksonline.com.
Katie McElveen, Special to The State