South Charleston Sports: Netters seek repeat league title

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Messenger photo by Jeff Pfeil

Southeastern’s varsity volleyball team includes: (front row, from left) Tori Rousculp, Amanda Harvey, Jacqueline Severt; (second row) Rhianna Wyss, Victoria Carr, Cara Gartin, Lexi Harbour, Carla Pinkerman; (third row) Head Coach Kathy Mercer, Madison Johnston, Brianna Toops and Assistant Coach Jon Mercer.

Southeastern’s volleyball team walloped the Ohio Heritage Conference last year, taking the title with a league record of 14-0.

The goal this year is to repeat as conference champions and go further in the tournament, said Head Coach Kathy Mercer, who is leading the team for her 22nd season.

Mercer counts blocking, hitting, defense and communication as the 2008 squad’s strengths.

“We want to use our defense to generate offense and keep other teams off balance,” Mercer said.

As for the skills the team is striving to improve, Mercer said her players need to relax on serve receive. She also noted that she has new personnel at the setter position.

“They are working hard and doing better every outing,” she said.

Southeastern has three seniors, all of whom serve as captains. Amanda Harvey is a middle hitter. Jacki Severt and Tori Rousculp are outside hitters.

Other key players are junior middle hitter Cara Gartin, junior setter Carla Pinkerman, junior libero Rhianna Wyss, sophomore setter/hitter Brianna Toops, and sophomore outside hitter Madison Johnston.

Mercer predicts Central, Greeneview, Madison-Plains, Versailles and West Liberty will be the teams to beat this season.

Mercer’s coaching staff includes Jon Mercer as junior varsity coach and Kim Workman and Rachel Haggy as varsity assistants. Workman, a Southeastern graduate, is new to the staff. She brings “energy and insights into blocking and hitting,” Mercer said.

SE VOLLEYBALL SCHEDULE

Aug. 30    @ Fairbanks/Kenton  (10:00)

Sept. 2    Central (5:30)

Sept. 4    @ Triad (5:30)

Sept. 6    Versailles (10:00)

Sept. 8    Cedarville (5:30)

Sept. 11    Mechanicsburg (5:30)

Sept. 13    N’west./Mad-Plains (10:00)

Sept. 15    Greeneview (5:30)

Sept. 18    @ West Liberty (5:30)

Sept. 22    Northeastern (5:30)

Sept. 25    @ Central (5:30)

Sept. 27    @ Emmanuel Christian (noon)

Sept. 29    Triad (5:30)

Oct. 2    @ Cedarville (5:30)

Oct. 4    @ Shawnee (10:00)

Oct. 6    @ Mechanicsburg (5:30)

Oct. 9    @ Greeneview (5:30)

Oct. 11    Ben Logan (10:00)

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