Nike Invitational provides opportunity for Cougars to develop talent
September 13, 2013
UH will travel to Fort Worth to compete in the TCU Nike Invitational for a tuneup against high-end competition.
Now standing at 6-1, the Cougars’ time at TCU will serve as their last tournament before opening play at home on Sept. 20. Their four opponents will be Grambling State, TCU, Ole Miss and Stephen F. Austin.
“We’re really excited to play some new teams,” said senior defensive specialist Meredith Ware. “It’s going to be new competition for us and it’s definitely going to be stronger competition for us, so we’re very excited.”
The team, which has been either practicing or playing nonstop since the beginning of August, is now familiar with the near-constant nature of the tournaments, with squad morale bolstered by the energy and allure of new competition.
“It’s a good chance to soldify what we’ve been working on since the beginning of August before we go into conference games,” Ware said.
While still a valuable learning tool, head coach Kaddie Platt said she views each match as key to the long season, thanks to the changes that accompanied the move to a new conference. She pointed out that her team members are still competitive and looking to win starting positions for the home opener.
“Tournaments are great in the preseason,” said Platt. “They allow you to play a lot of games in a short amount of time so you can get better a lot quicker, because you’re having to compete against another (team) and you’re having to make adjustments.
“The travel isn’t different, but what will be different about it is that this year, we don’t have our conference tournament, so every road game has as much importance as playing in the conference tournament,” said Platt. “We have to travel efficiently and we have to be really consistent the whole time.”