The schedule for the Nebraska volleyball season hasn’t been released to the public yet because it’s not certain when the season will be able to begin.
But there is something on the sports calendar in the state — tentatively, of course — that’s of interest to Husker volleyball fans.
A high school volleyball tournament scheduled for Oct. 10 at Omaha Skutt will include three players from three different states who are committed to play volleyball for the Huskers, giving fans a chance to watch some of the players who make up Nebraska’s next two highly ranked recruiting classes.
And each of those Husker recruits are top-10 national recruits, according to list compiled by PrepVolleyball.com.
Of course, Husker recruit Lindsay Krause will be there. The Omaha Skutt senior is the No. 2-ranked player in the 2021 recruiting class. Lexi Rodriguez, a libero and the No. 10-ranked recruit in the senior class, will also be there with her team from Sterling, Illinois.
And Hayden Kubik, Nebraska's newest commit who earlier this week was listed as the No. 1 recruit among high school juniors, will be there with her team from Valley High School in West Des Moines, Iowa.
The other teams in the one day, eight-team tournament are Lincoln East, Papillion-La Vista South, Saint Thomas Aquinas (Kansas), Lee’s Summit West (Missouri) and St. Teresa’s Academy (Missouri).
Four of the eight teams won state championships year: Skutt, Papio South, Sterling and Saint Thomas Aquinas.
With teams coming from five states it’s possible that the slate of teams may change due to each state’s restrictions for high school sports this year due to COVID-19.
Omaha Skutt coach Renee Saunders, who played on Nebraska’s 1995 national championship volleyball team, says it will be great if the tournament goes off as planned and includes three future Huskers.
“If those three are there it’s going to be awesome,” Saunders said. “It’s going to be a great tournament anyway, just because I think it’s always fun to bring teams from other states to play, especially good teams. And all of the teams that I’ve tried to get have been successful in their state.”
To get the tournament scheduled, Saunders sent out emails to about 75 teams to gauge their interest in coming to Omaha.
The tournament will be played on two courts at Omaha Skutt. It will begin with three pool-play matches for each team. Then the top teams in each pool will play for the championship, and the second-place teams in each pool will play for third place.
Skutt plans to play several out-of-state teams this year. They’ll also play matches in Kansas City, Missouri, and Chicago. They were also scheduled to go to a tournament in Las Vegas that’s been canceled.
Saunders is glad that the Nebraska School Activities Association has made plans to start the volleyball season.
“I’m just excited to get a start, and then hopefully from that moment on I hope we can keep plugging forward and keep people safe,” she said.
Skutt will benefit from having Krause play all of its matches. The previous two years the 6-foot-3 outside hitter missed several matches while playing in a tournament with the United States youth national team.
“(Krause is) super-athletic, she has a killer instinct, and she might be one of the most competitive people I’ve ever met,” Saunders said.
Krause will be trying to win a fourth state title this fall.
“I don’t know if she ever thinks that she’s going to lose, and if she has an opportunity to keep her team from losing she will do everything in her power to make sure they don’t,” Saunders said.
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