Volleyball sets up for another successful season
The Lady Cougar volleyball team is setting up for what’s expected to be another remarkable season.
Last year the Cougars went 34-4, putting together an almost-perfect regular season with a single loss at Indiana Wesleyan University.
The team went all the way to pool play at the NAIA National Tournament.
MVNU returns 11 veteran players, including senior leaders Carolyn Beatty, Annelise Rohrer and Bridget Troyer.
“This year we have many returning players who have yet another year of experience under their belts,” Rohrer said.
The team only lost one player to graduation, libero and team mom, Marlowe Beatty. While Marlowe is considered unreplaceable, Ashley Gingerich is filling the position and has proved she is a strong leader as she has already recorded well over 160 digs.
The Lady Cougars also welcome freshmen Stephanie Hubby and Alyssa Harrer and sophomore newcomer Katelyn Dufur to the roster.
Hubby is a defensive specialist from Archbold, Ohio. Harrer, from Bucyrus, Ohio, and Dufur, from Mount Vernon, both are middle hitters.
This season, the Lady Cougars say they are motivated to make it back to Nationals.
“We will strive to go as far as possible, hopefully making it to Nationals once again, giving God the glory all the way,” Rohrer said.
While Nationals is a strong goal, it is not the team’s sole focus.
“The goal is always to extend the season as long as possible, but we also don’t want to fixate too much on last year,” Beatty said. “We just want to take it one game at a time and give it our all each night.”
Coach Paul Swanson echoed those sentiments. “The goal, each time you go out, is to keep improving, getting better,” Swanson said in an interview with WNZR.tv. “We want to be challenged so we can improve.”
The team hopes to grow together beyond their time on the court and truly become a sisterhood.
“We are a very tight-knit group of girls. When you join the team, you obtain 13 sisters, who you get to play volleyball with, room with, laugh with, celebrate with, and grow with,” Rohrer said.
The seniors are excited for a new season and another chance to reach the top. But, ultimately the lessons they’ve learned and the people they have journeyed with are the biggest rewards.
“There is nothing quite like getting to play on this team,” Beatty said. “We all get along really well and each personality brings so much to the team. I am so thankful God led each of them to MVNU.”
The Lady Cougars are currently 11-1 for the season and 2-0 in the Crossroads League.
They will be on the court again tonight at 7 p.m. on the road at the University of Saint Francis and in Ariel Arena tomorrow against Spring Arbor University at 3 p.m.