Women’s professional volleyball Heungkuk Life middle blocker Lee Joo-ah (22) scored 15 points against Korea Expressway Corporation on the 13th, leading her team to a set score 3-2 victory. She recorded a 55% attack success rate and fulfilled her mission with Altoran-like blocking at every turn.
She showed an impeccable performance, but it seems that she did not live up to the expectations of the command tower. Heungkuk Life coach Kwon Soon-chan, who we met after the game, said with a sad expression, “Lee Joo-ah is a player who needs to do better. His breathing with setter Kim Da-sol is still not perfect. Only when he gets better can the side attack (with Kim Yeon-kyung and Yelena) survive.” seemed to build
Lee Joo-ah is an elite athlete. In the rookie draft held in September 2018, he was nominated by Heungkuk Life Insurance as the first overall pick, and in his V-League debut season, he recorded 149 points and 0.402 blocks per set, showing a performance worthy of a super rookie. At the awards ceremony held after the season, he lost the rookie award by one vote to Jeong Ji-yoon (Hyundai E&C), who received 14 votes, but he boarded the national team before Jeong Ji-yoon in the intercontinental qualifiers for the Tokyo Olympics held in August 2019.
Since then, Lee Joo-ah’s growth has been rather slow. He failed to leave a strong impression in the two consecutive seasons he played in the V-League. His last season (2021-22) increased his serving and blocking points, but his attack success rate was a career-low 35.69%.
Heungkuk Life Insurance became a candidate for the championship at once with the addition of’Volleyball Empress’ Kim Yeon-kyung. As Yelena, who played for KGC Ginseng Corporation last season and ranked 5th in scoring (672 points), joined, the side attack power became stronger.
However, the scoring contribution of the middle blocker line is relatively low. Na-hee Kim, a veteran of her 16 years since her debut, is struggling, but there are ups and downs in her stamina. She’s not even an aggressive type. Lee Joo-ah should support scoring with not only blocking, but also center fast attacks and moving attacks. This is why coach Kwon Soon-chan spared praise and wanted Lee Joo-ah to fight hard even in the game in which he played an active role. 안전놀이터
As of the 19th, Heungkuk Life Insurance recorded 12 wins, 3 losses and 35 points in the V-League, ranking second after Hyundai Engineering & Construction (38 points), which is running 14 consecutive wins from the opening. Hyundai E&C’s rise is strong, but both record and victory points are in the pursuit range. If you win in a head-to-head match, a reverse is also possible.
Lee Joo-ah is also a key player in Heungkuk Life Insurance, the only team that can keep Hyundai E&C in check. Because he is a player who can grow further. He is showing better performance in the 3rd round than in the 1st and 2nd rounds. In his most recent appearance, against KGC Ginseng Corporation on the 17th, he dominated the net and broke the record for the most points (20 points) in an individual game. He stood out more than Kim Yeon-kyung (19 points). Coach Kwon Soon-chan expressed his satisfaction after this game, saying, “We have to do this.”
Lee Joo-ah, who ranks first in the mobile attack (success rate) category (52.78%), expressed her regret for the only one blocking in the KGC Ginseng Corporation exhibition and expressed her will to contribute more to the fight for air supremacy.