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Yellow Jacket Roundup: Calvinball

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The one where the game is made up and the points don’t matter.

The youth movement begins in earnest for volleyball with a tough-to-swallow loss to Auburn.
Georgia Tech Athletics/Danny Karnik

ATLANTA, GEORGIA - After a long, hot summer, it’s the most magical time of year on the Flats - sports are back! And we here at From the Rumble Seat would like to officially welcome you to the 2018-2019 athletics season.


Well, we made it through the cold, dark days without sports. Seeing as it was sunny and hot, that’s not entirely true, but, after a summer across the pond in which sporting subsistence came solely via daytime baseball, I think I speak for every Tech fan when I say I am more than pleased it’s time for that odd time of year in which volleyball plays a bunch of random schools in tournaments with very similar names. So welcome back to the Flats, where the players play and we write up these games, like, every day. Or week, that is.

Here at Yellow Jacket Roundup, the aim is to provide you, Georgia Tech fan, with a concentrated dose of news and results from all those other sports you may not think about on a daily basis like, say, football. If you’re like me and constantly have swimming on your mind, first off, I’m sorry, and second off, well, we have to wait on the rest of the teams since really only volleyball has started playing. So where do we start?


Volleyball

Saturday, August 18th: Auburn (0 - 0) escapes Georgia Tech (0 - 0), 25-22, 25-16, 19-25, 25-23 (3 - 1).

Before we get to the season primer, first things come first: Tech volleyball was in action this weekend, officially kicking off the competitive year for the Yellow Jackets. What a time to be alive, indeed. Tech and Auburn kept things close in the first set, with Auburn taking a lead out of the gate it didn’t relinquish the whole set. Tech dropped as many as five back midway through the match, but rattled off four straight to come within one at 15-14. That was as close as they would come before ultimately dropping it 25-22. The second set saw a remarkably similar start, but Tech lost the war of attrition faster and faster until it fell 25-16. The story changed in the third set, though, as the Jackets finally found a rhythm that would carry them through the narrow win. With seemingly more starters in, coach Michelle Collier found a mix that worked and, more critically, freshman Mikaila Dowd found her groove, including killing a ball directly into the nose of #22 from Auburn. A solid way to score a point, sure, but she and fellow freshman, defensive specialist and libero Maddie Tippett had incredible games, regardless. Meanwhile, sophomore Dominique Washington was having a nice little game for herself. This team is so young, and, quite honestly, it seemed to look better and better as the match dragged on. In the fourth and final set, Tech and Auburn played a thriller right down to the wire, and Tech was on the receiving end of a blown call to give the Tigers match point. They lost on the next point. However, since it was an exhibition, perhaps just getting the young players some competition was important, too. But Tippett and Dowd looked intimidating, setting the team up for hopefully some success this year. Though the blow call hurt, the very young Jackets got playing time, and, more importantly, looked most solid for the most part, especially their underclassmen.

A note on the atmosphere at O’Keefe - it’s incredible. If you’ve never been, try and find some time if you’re down for a football game to head over the the gym. The crowd and the noise are unmatched - even without the band and not full capacity, the stands were rocking anyways, never more obviously than the last two points of the unfortunate fourth set. So, check out O’Keefe. The most underrated fan experience on the Flats, without a doubt.

This weekend: Tech hosts the Hyatt Regency Invitational, facing Idaho State, Winthrop, Abilene Christian, and Georgetown in one of said strangely named tournaments. Go Jackets!


In the fall, we already have volleyball playing games this week, with football, of course, and cross country soon to follow. Then, we’ll see swimming and diving start their late fall through winter season and the golf fall tournaments start. Come late September and early October, softball should be back in action for their fall tune-ups as well as the shorter fall tennis seasons. Sooner rather than later, basketball will be back in action, along with track and field. When the spring season hits, softball, baseball, tennis, and golf hit their stride.

The Jackets field seventeen varsity sports, and Yellow Jacket Roundup has taken a break over the summer to take a look at each program. Take a look the prospects and status of cross country, track and field, swimming and diving, women’s basketball, softball, volleyball, men’s tennis, women’s tennis, and men’s golf, as well as the state of non-revenue sports in general, if you missed out on any of the coverage. Volleyball looks to start the program’s year off strong and build off of some strong adds and returning depth this year.

If you’re interested in attending any Tech sports live on the Flats, the best way to view your Yellow Jackets, the ticket information can be found here. Football, men’s and women’s basketball, baseball, and volleyball all require paid admission but the rest of the Tech sports have free regular season admission. Dates and times for each sporting event contested by the Jackets can be found weekly here on Monday (or, sometimes Tuesday) or on the calendar on ramblinwreck.com. We came here to play school, just like Taquon Marshall.

If you’re at all on the fence about attending a game live, it cannot be stressed enough that the environment is incredible at all of Tech’s home venues when full of Tech faithful, like, say, the buzz at sold-out McCamish Pavilion. However, if you can’t, you can catch all of Tech’s volleyball, women’s basketball, and baseball games on WREK radio, 91.1 FM, and their website, as well as ACC Network Extra for those sports as well as softball. WREK’s reach is global, as can be attested by finding random fans of the eclectic Tech station in Heidelberg, Germany a few months back. Tech sports can be found anywhere! Of course, catch football and basketball via the Tech radio network, ESPN and the ACC Network, and whatnot.


This Week on the Flats:

BOLD for home, REGULAR for away, ITALIC for time and location

Tuesday: OFF

Wednesday: OFF

Thursday: OFF

Friday:
Volleyball vs. Idaho State (Hyatt Regency Invitational)
12:00 PM, O’Keefe Gymnasium, ACC Network Extra and WREK 91.1
Volleyball vs. Winthrop (Hyatt Regency Invitational)
7:00 PM, O’Keefe Gymnasium, ACC Network Extra and WREK 91.1

Saturday:
Volleyball vs. Abilene Christian (Hyatt Regency Invitational)
12:00 PM, O’Keefe Gymnasium, ACC Network Extra and WREK 91.1
Volleyball vs. Winthrop (Hyatt Regency Invitational)
7:00 PM, O’Keefe Gymnasium, ACC Network Extra and WREK 91.1

Sunday: OFF