• This is the first year for coach Melissa Neeb, who replaces Erica Warmus after nine seasons.
• Eight juniors dominate the roster.
• Middle blocker Maddie Zylstra got honorable mention all-conference but she graduated after three-plus seasons on varsity. “We basically graduated our entire team from last year … and have one senior,” Neeb said. “We have a lot of experience we have to work on gain. They have very good attitudes.”
• The new coach is Lisa Klapperich.
• Rose Hahn, a senior, returns after earning all-Big East honorable mention. “She’s an outstanding volleyball player and she’ll be even stronger this year,” Klapperich said. “I see our team being stronger this year … We have a makeup of four seniors – two will be starters – and a bunch of juniors that played last year. We really are the same team as what we were last year, and while we didn’t have much of a winning record last year, I really see us putting it together this year.”
• Alicia Phephles is the new coach, but no all-conference players return from a year ago. “We’re starting fresh,” she said. “The main philosophy I have is being a team. That’s the most important in volleyball. You don’t win games by yourself. You play six people, so you have to work together to have success.”
• Lizzie Binder is now playing at Cal State Bakersfield and is the school’s all-time leader in kills. Last year, she made second-team all-state (alternate fall) and was named conference player of the year for the second straight season.
• Taylor Bulkow and Katie Goebel also graduated after earning all-conference honorable mention.
• Senior Maddie Ognacevic earned a spot on the all-league second team. She ranked fifth in the conference in blocks, sixth in digs and 10th in kills. “We’re very excited to have Maddie back, especially coming off a really strong junior year,” coach Abby Sigler said. “She really has grown a lot the past few years and brings a strong presence to our program.”
• The team was 9-2 in the Prep Dig summer league in Milwaukee. “It was a really strong performance,” Sigler said. “I know what holds up back sometimes is the prior history of South volleyball. People don’t expect us to be as good as we actually are.”
• Corinne Pfeifer, who received all-FRCC honorable mention, graduated.