‘Spring volleyball’ GS’s biggest harvest, which is not easy, is Kwon Min-ji

GS Caltex KIXX, led by coach Sang-Hyun Cha, held a set score of 3-2 (25-17, 29-31, 23-25, 25-17, 29-31, 23-25, 25-19, 15-10) won. GS Caltex, which grabbed two points by catching Heungkuk Life Insurance, who was trying to solidify its lead, took the 5th place by ahead of IBK Industrial Bank Altos, which had the same points, in the set win rate (14 wins, 17 losses).

For GS Caltex, foreign player Leticia Moma Bassoko scored 37 points, including 2 sub points and 3 blocks, leading GS Caltex to victory, while local ace Kang So-hui also contributed by scoring 23 points with a success rate of 47.73%. And at GS Caltex, from the 5th round, Kwon Min-ji, a 4th year pro outside hitter who has been increasing her starting lineup over Seo-yeon Yoo, contributed greatly to the victory by performing a ‘surprising performance’, scoring 18 points with a success rate of 45.95%.

If you change your position, like Pyo Seung-ju and Han Su-ji

In the V-League, there are not a few players who change positions for team reasons or individual survival. Of course, from the point of view of the coach or club, it is very helpful for team management if a player plays various positions, but in fact, changing positions is not always good for individual players. This is because going back and forth between multiple positions means not being able to settle in one position, and that means that the odds of getting a spot as a permanent starter are low.

A typical example is Pyo Seung-joo (Industrial Bank of Korea), who has been performing the best since his professional debut, running 8th in scoring (449 points, 3rd in domestic players) this season. Pyo Seung-joo, who is 182cm tall and has good physical condition, has made a name for himself as a multiplayer representative of the V-League since joining Korea Expressway Corporation High Pass in 2010. The value of Pyo Seung-ju, who can freely move left and right depending on team circumstances and can also act as a middle blocker in some cases, was very high. 

However, there were not many seasons in which Pyo Seung-ju, who had a strong perception of being a ‘multiplayer’, played an active role as a full-time starter. Eventually, after the 2018-2019 season, Pyo Seung-joo chose to transfer to IBK, which guaranteed a full-time starter. After transferring to IBK, Pyo Seung-ju did not move around in various positions and settled as an outside heater, playing an active part as a member of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics quarterfinals.

As in the case of Pyo Seung-joo, who had time to wander until he became a full-time starter, when changing positions, it is wiser to go all-in to settle in a new position rather than aiming for a multi-position. A good example is GS Caltex’s “Captain” Han Su-ji, who successfully transformed from a setter to a middle blocker. Han Su-ji, who joined the pros as a setter in 2006 and won the combined championship in the 2011-2012 season as the main setter for KGC Ginseng Corporation, transformed into a middle blocker ahead of the 2016-2017 season.

Han Su-ji, who abandoned the setter position and continued to perform well as a middle blocker, signed an FA contract with Ginseng Corporation for an annual salary of 300 million won after the 2017-2018 season, opening an era of success as a middle blocker. Even after transferring to GS Caltex in May 2019, Han Su-ji has been consistently active as a starting center and is running first in the blocking category with 0.82 blocking per set this season. Now, ‘Setter Han Su-ji’ has long been a memory to both individuals and volleyball fans.

Opportunity to play in the starting lineup increased from the second half of the season

In the 2019 rookie draft, Kwon Min-ji’s main position was outside heater when he was nominated by GS Caltex as the 3rd overall pick after Jeong Ho-young (Ginseng Corporation) and Lee Da-hyun (Hyundai E&C Hillstate). However, at GS Caltex at the time, Lee So-young (Ginseng Corporation) and Kang So-hui, the ‘sisters’, were holding on as the built-in starters, and there were also promising players of similar ages such as Park Hye-min (Ginseng Corporation), so opportunities did not come easily for Kwon Min-ji. 토토사이트

GS Caltex had a solid outside heater position, but it had a weakness in the middle blocker, where Civilization and Kim Yu-ri suffered from frequent injuries. In response, coach Sang-Hyun Cha used Kwon Min-Ji as a middle blocker, who is a little short (178 cm) but has a bold personality and excellent attack power. That’s how Kwon Min-ji seemed to settle down as an ‘undersized middle blocker’ representing the V-League.

However, coach Sang-hyun Cha announced plans to return Kwon Min-ji as an outside hitter ahead of the 2022-2023 season, and Kwon Min-ji won the Rising Star Award with 63 points in 4 cup matches. However, as the season began, Coach Sang-Hyun Cha used Kang So-Hwi and Yoo Seo-Yeon as the starting pitchers, and Choi Eun-Ji as the third outside hitter, and Kwon Min-Ji’s order was gradually pushed back. However, as Yoo Seo-yeon struggled with height problems and Choi Eun-ji left due to a knee injury, Kwon Min-ji also had an opportunity.

In the 5th round, Kwon Min-ji’s starting opportunities increased, and she started to establish herself as Kang So-hui’s new partner by scoring 52 points in 6 games in the 5th round. Kwon Min-ji, who scored 17 points, the highest score in the match against Ginseng Corporation on the 12th with a success rate of 51.6%, scored 18 points with a success rate of 45.95% in the first match of the 6th round against Heungkuk Life Insurance on the 26th, breaking the personal record for the most points in 2 weeks. renewed on Unlike two weeks ago when the team lost, this time the team also won and enjoyed greater joy.

GS Caltex, which has five regular league games left, is currently behind Korea Expressway Corporation in 4th place with a difference of 7 points. In order for GS Caltex to advance to volleyball this spring this season, it is necessary to secure at least 4th place while reducing the difference between the points with 3rd place to within 3 points, which is not a realistic goal. However, even if GS Caltex fails to advance into spring volleyball, discovering a promising outside heater named Kwon Min-ji will be GS Caltex’s biggest harvest this season.

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