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STC volleyball will start season with experience

August 22, 2018
By Allison Graham - Sports Editor ( , Toledo Chronicle, Tama News-Herald

Varsity Intro Video:

The STC Volleyball team is headed into the season with some good experience in their varsity line up. Out of eight seniors, seven have seen varsity playing time. It's something that, according to head coach Amy Dolash, they haven't seen before under her watch.

The 2018 group of seniors include Jaelin Berger, Mackenzie Beyer, Katelyn Campbell, Abbie Morgan, Azra Papakee, Madison Rohach, Stacey Slaven and Cora Van De Walle.

Article Photos

The STC?Trojan Volleyball team gave fans a sneak peak of the team at the annual Trojan Bowl on Friday, August 17. The varsity team scrimmaged together as well as the freshman and JV teams. Madison Rohach goes in for a kill while Abby Morgan and Gwen Upah raise their arms for a block.
Chronicle Photos/Allison Graham

The Trojans will be looking to replace power hitter Sadie Smith. Smith graduated last season and is now playing for the MCC Tigers. Madison Rohach was right behind Smith last season in the outside hitter role. Also someone who could step into those shoes is Stacey Slaven. Slaven was not on the roster last season but returns this season with some crucial skills for the Trojans. Slaven has a vertical jump that will definitely help out the team. After all she is a Drake Relays and State qualifying high jumper for the STC Track team which makes the cross over to volleyball a natural fit.

"Stacey is not the power hitter that Sadie was but she's got such an amazing vertical," said Dolash.

2018 Captains

Captains for the 2018 Volleyball have been selected. Katelyn Campbell and Kaitlyn Riha will lead the team this season.

"I'm looking forward to playing with everyone and seeing my hitters get really good kills and winning some games," said Katelyn Campbell.

"I'm just ready to get started and get pumped," said Kaitlyn Riha, "and win games and get good points."

"We have a lot of good hitters that can do good things and our back row is really looking good said Campbell.

"We're ready to run a few new plays," added Riha.

Freshmen Volleyball

Currently the Trojans have just five juniors out and seven freshman which is a bit of a low number.

"They are very, very talented freshman, it's amazing the level that they are coming in at but seven is not a whole lot of room to play around with," said Dolash.

However they obviously just need the six to play.

"It's kind of nice with the seven we have because they have been playing club together for the last several years. Not that they have to be in defined rolls but each one of them already has some sort of roll. We already naturally have a libero in Kallie Meek and we've got three we are working at in the setter position and those three setters can also play right side or outside and a couple of girls who are playing in the middle and developing there. It's a neat dynamic they have and just coming in with these skill sets is amazing. There's a lot to be said about the AAU program and how the middle school is developing further," said Dolash.

Conference Competition

Dolash commented that WaMaC competition will still be strong this season. Independence qualified for State last year and looks to return much of their starting lineup. Center Point-Urbana graduated quite a few seniors but always seems to have a strong program. Clear Creek-Amana is another school that looks to be good.

The volleyball team will be the first to see how the shake up in the WaMaC will play out. Western Dubuque and Anamosa both left the eastern division of the conference with the start of the 2018-19 school year. Marion then moved to the eastern side which will leave Independence, Vinton-Shellsburg, Benton, Clear Creek-Amana, Center Point-Urbana, Williamsburg and South Tama on the western side. The loss of Marion will drop the competition to six instead of seven conference matches so Dolash picked up another tournament to offset the change.

"I'm looking forward to seeing what these girls can do. I think we have a lot of experience coming back which is great to have and there is a lot of hunger to not only do well in the conference but also to improve personally. We got two wins last year against Williamsburg and Vinton-Shellsburg. This year not only do we want to get them again but also see who else can we get. But then since we not only got two more tournaments they are going to see some different competition. We might get the opportunity to play Pella who is always at state so it's exciting to play teams at that caliber and to see what these guys can do against that caliber. They've got that attitude, that desire to go get it, now we need to go put that out there and amaze the world," said Dolash.



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