A win for the Blugolds marks a big milestone for coach

    Head Coach Kim Wudi secured her 300th career win after UW-Eau Claire beat UW-Stevens Point

    More stories from Kaitlyn Zenner


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    Women’s volleyball head coach Kim Wudi gained her 300th career win after the Blugolds defeated the Pointers.

    The UW-Eau Claire women’s volleyball team spiked their way to a conference win against UW-Stevens Point this past Saturday, Oct. 19, giving Kim Wudi, head coach for the Blugolds, 300 career wins and bumping the Blugolds record to 13-8 overall.  

    The first set against the Pointers ended in a Blugold victory with a final score of 37-35. Kendra Baierl, a third-year middle hitter, had three kills late in the set that helped seal the win. Baierl said one of the biggest difficulties in the match was staying focused throughout the entire first set. 

    “I would say the biggest challenges were staying in the game mentally, since the first set went so long, and being smart with the ball in order to score fast,” Baierl said. 

    After the first set, the Pointers took an early lead in the second set, but the Blugolds went on to defeat UW-Stevens Point with a score of 25-21. Mackenzie Bachmann, a third-year outside hitter, said the Blugolds were able to stay composed despite the intensity of the game. 

    “We did a great job of maintaining focus on our goal and staying calm in a pretty overwhelming gym environment,” Bachmann said. “We prepared really well for the match, and we had a very clear-cut game plan on how we were going to beat them.” 

    UW-Stevens Point went on to win the third set 26-24, but this was soon followed by another UW-Eau Claire victory as they defeated UW-Stevens Point in the fourth set 25-20. Arianna Barrett, a second-year and outside hitter, had a total of 19 kills throughout the game, including the one that ended the game. 

    Baierl said she thought the team’s composure throughout the match was one of their greatest strengths that helped them defeat the Pointers.  

    “We were very in control of the whole match,” Baierl said. “Winning or losing was all up to us. Everyone really brought their ‘A game’ and wanted to win, and the energy on the floor was undeniable.”

    Though the Blugolds came away with a win against the Pointers, Bachmann said the team is always focused on getting better and improving their skills during practice. 

    “We still haven’t reached our peak yet, but we’re getting there,” Bachmann said. “Every day we see improvements, and we see tremendous strides towards our end goal. We work to get better every single day in the gym. We want to peak at the right time.” 

    Not only did this victory improve the Blugolds WIAC record to 3-2, but it also marked 300 wins for Wudi. Bachmann said she was extremely proud to be able to help get her coach to this point in her career. 

    “Helping Kim get her 300th win was such a tremendous feeling,” Bachmann said. “She has unbelievable love for our team and for our program, and there’s no one else that deserves it more than she does. I couldn’t imagine playing for anyone else, and it’s such an honor to contribute our success to someone I love and respect so much.”

    The next match for the Blugolds will be away against Illinois Wesleyan this Friday, Oct. 25.

     Zenner can be reached at [email protected].