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By Missy Klatt
GLENWOOD CITY — With only two returning varsity players from last year, new head coach, Nicole Miller has a big challenge ahead of her as she needs to shape her inexperienced team into varsity players. After losing a whopping nine seniors last year to graduation there are many spots that need to be filled at the varsity level. Those lost to graduation were Alexis Curvello, Aubrey Curvello, Jatelyn Johnson, Abby Kremer, Michaela Nyhus, Tressa Peskar, Ashley Peterson, Delaney Quinn, and Maggie Wallin. They will be missed in a variety of ways. Losing a setter, some good all-around players and strong servers is bad enough in itself but perhaps the hardest position to replace will be that of team leaders.
Juniors Madelyn Oehlke and Bella Rassbach are the two returning varsity letter winners. “Madelyn will be returning as a setter and a strong middle/right hitter. Bella will also be returning for us as a solid all-around player.” Miller commented “We also have a group of returning juniors and seniors who played at the end of last season during tournament time.” It will be to these girls that Miller will be looking to compete at the varsity level.
After a solid week of practice Coach Miller is happy with what she has seen and now has a better idea of where this team’s strengths lie. She has a very strong junior class of players. Besides Madelyn, who Miller states is their strongest player with the most varsity experience, and Bella, Miller has been very impressed with junior, Yasmin Mendez who she says is a phenomenal back row player. “She can read the back row like none other. I’m excited to have her on the team.”
Other juniors that will be suiting up for varsity include Delanie Fayerweather who will be one of the setters and Kristin Dayton. Filling out the varsity squad are seniors Leah Magsam, Makiah Schutz, Brandi Standaert, Kassidi Thompson, and Mae Buttles.
Coach Miller plans on playing a 6-2 set up, mainly rotating 8 players in and out.
Miller notes that the team is blending well and they are all getting along. “The atmosphere is very good”. She goes on to say that we have a talented group of kids who are going to be striving to win and have a winning season. Miller is looking forward to the season.
Joining Miller this year are Jacob Maes as the JV coach and Chelsey Strenke leading the C squad.
The girls played in a triangular this past Tuesday at Menomonie. They will play in another triangular this coming Tuesday, September 3rd at Amery against Amery and Spooner. The meet starts at 5:00 p.m. but the Toppers have a bye in round one.
Seniors: Mae Buttles, Leah Magsam, Makiah Schutz, Brandi Standaert, and Kassidi Thompson.
Juniors: Kristin Dayton, Delaine Fayerweather, Yasmin Mendez, Madelyn Oehlke, Bella Rassbach, Hallie Dopkins, and Hailey Schmidt.
Sophomores: Morgan Johnson, Alyssa Fouks, Emma Lamb, Makenzi Anderson, Mikaela Jorgenson, and Isabel Christmas.
Freshmen: Devyn Olson, Mali Draxler, Aubree Logghe, Emilie Monn, Eliza Voeltz, Alexandra Peterson, Maddie Booth, Aria DeSmith, Lily Rutske, Ellery Unser, and Sarah Cook.