“Competitive anger” has spurred Cyclone volleyball to recent success.

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The Iowa State volleyball team was in a slump earlier this month. Two losses in three matches preceded a slow start at Texas Tech (losing 16-25 in the first set).

The Cyclones were in crisis mode.

“When we were down one game at Texas Tech, that was pressure,” Head Coach Christy Johnson-Lynch said. “In fact, that might be as much pressure as we’ve felt all season.”

The team rebounded that night and has won six sets in a row since and outscored its opposition by a staggering 150-86 margin. What happened?

“We talked about using competitive anger,” Johnson-Lynch said. “Go out and being angry about how we played.”

Johnson-Lynch had read a quote from North Carolina women’s soccer coach Anson Dorrance – whose career record is 737-47-28 – that included a reference to “competitive anger.”

“That’s been a theme for us for a couple of weeks and I think they (our team) liked it and embraced it,” Johnson-Lynch said. “Sometimes, you have to play with anger and that’s ok.”

Earlier this year, Johnson-Lynch felt her team was tentative. I think she likes the angrier team better.

Reader feedback is welcome at 2minutetimeout@iastate.edu. You can also follow me on Twitter at twitter.com/SteveMalchow

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