Few coaches would complain if their volleyball team hit nearly .300 against the nation’s No. 15-seeded team and their star hitter recorded 18 kills.
And despite losing Friday’s second-round NCAA match against Pepperdine, North Carolina coach Joe Sagula is certainly not among them.
“Normally if we’re hitting that well as a team, we’re probably winning that match,” Sagula said. “They put a lot of pressure on us, but I thought we hung in there really well. It just goes to show how great Pepperdine played.”
Still, UNC’s loss to the Waves knocked it out of the tournament in the second round for the second year in a row. The Waves handled the Tar Heels in straight yet closely contested sets, 25-20, 25-22, 25-22. The key to the Waves’ dominance, Sagula said, was their relentless defense and remarkable consistency.
“They made just six errors in the entire match,” said Sagula, whose team committed 16 miscues. “They were flawless.”