The term “on fire” is heard quite often in the sports world, and it certainly was suitable when it came to the state of Oregon Volleyball as the Ducks headed into Pullman, Washington on a six-game winning streak.
Not only had Oregon not lost a game since the Pac-12/ Big Ten Challenge nearly a month ago, but they’ve swept all three sets in four of those six games, including a 3-0 victory over No.5 Stanford.
A big part of the success of the team as a whole has been the sudden surge of outside hitter Mimi Coyler, who collected Pac-12 Freshman of the week honors this past Monday for the fifth time already this season. Coyler has become only the fifth player in conference history to win the award five or more times, and we’re still in early October.
The 6-foot-3 freshman from Lincoln, California recorded 12 kills and 14 digs in the sweep of Arizona State as well as 13 kills and 11 digs in the proceeding sweep of Arizona. She hit .440 against the Wildcats and is ranked seventh in the Pac-12 in both kills per set (3.53) and points per set (4.20). The Ducks have moved up to the No.12 spot in the AVCA poll and sit at the No.8 spot in the NCAA RPI.
After a nice stretch of three straight matches at Matthew Knight Arena, the Ducks hit the road for four consecutive matches, first heading North to take on the Washington schools and then South for contests with the LA schools. They dropped the first in Pullman in five matches on Friday, and go to Seattle on Sunday.
The trip won’t be an easy one, especially in Seattle against the No.16 Huskies, but if Coyler continues her stellar play and the team continues to ride its new-found wave of momentum, big things could be in store for Oregon in the month of October.