(By Geno Ludwig/Chewelah Independent)
Chewelah netters look to go onwards and upwards…
Volleyball season will begin for the Chewelah Cougars this week when they launch into league play at Freeman on Thursday, Sept. 7, weather permitting. They were supposed to play at Newport last Tuesday, but the game was rescheduled because of the thick forest fire smoke. Cougar fans will see the team in action when the girls return home for a three-game stand next week when they host Springdale on Monday, Deer Park on Tuesday, and Lakeside on Thursday. All varsity matches are scheduled to start at 6:30.
Coach Shirley Baker has 33 young ladies on her roster this season. She has selected nine experienced players for the varsity team and nine more for the junior varsity lineup. Fifteen younger players and foreign exchange students will start the season on the C-squad and be moved up to the JV as skills improve.
“The varsity and JV rosters will be fluid,” said Coach Baker. “Players will move up and down from one team to the other as their skills improve throughout the season. Three of the JV players will be moved up to the varsity for every match. The important thing is that every girl gets as much playing time as possible.”
To start the season, the varsity team will include seniors Krislyn Koler, Elizabeth Chalmers, and Jaelynn Skok; junior Bailey Smith; and sophomores Skyla Tunison, Elle Carpenter, Lily Kirry, Jesse Macrae, and Haven Rainer. The four older players have at least two years of varsity experience. Half of the team will be younger sophomore players who have impressed Baker with their skills during the first three weeks of workouts.
Koler, Chalmers, and Skok have three seasons of varsity experience and will be the leaders on the floor. Koler plays all positions on the court equally well as a passer in the back row and as a hitter at the net. Chalmers is the team’s setter, but she is also a hard hitter up front. Skok is primarily a back row player.
Smith worked her way into a starting role as a hitter last year as a sophomore and will give strength to the front row as an outside hitter. Tunison has grown to be the tallest member of the team, so she will take on a larger role as a hitter and blocker in the front row. Carpenter also enjoyed some varsity time in her freshman season and is now permanent a figure on the team as a setter.
The JV team will be made up of Andrea Franks, Emily Adams, Harmony Kuk, Karilee Desautel, Hailey Crise, Madison Siegel, Alyssa Fitzgerald, Taya Tapia, and Natalie Rose to begin the season.
Lack of height will again be a concern for the Cougars. Some of the girls have stretched since last season, but none have reached six-foot stature. Tunison at 5’9” is the tallest on the team, with Chalmers at 5’8”. So, the team will be relying on speed, skills, and team play to win matches this fall.
Sept. 11 Mary Walker 6:30 p.m.
Sept. 12 Deer Park 6:30 p.m.
Sept. 14 Lakeside 6:30 p.m.
Sept. 19 at Riverside 6:30 p.m.
Sept. 21 Medical Lake 6:30 p.m.
Sept. 26 at Colville 6:30 p.m.
Sept. 28 Newport 6:30 p.m.
Oct. 3 Freeman 6:30 p.m.
Oct. 5 at Deer Park 6:30 p.m.
Oct. 10 at Lakeside 6:30 p.m.
Oct. 12 Riverside 6:30 p.m.
Oct. 17 at Medical Lake 6:30 p.m.
Oct. 19 Colville 6:30 p.m.
Oct. 23 League Tiebreakers
Oct. 26 NEA League Tourney
Oct. 28 NEA League Tourney
Nov. 4 Regionals
Nov. 10-11 State Tournament in Yakima
2. Bailey Smith, Junior OH
3. Krislyn Koler, Senior OH
4. Elle Carpenter, Sophomore Setter
5. Elizabeth Chalmers, Senior Setter
7. Skyla Tunison, Sophomore MB
8. Haven Rainer, Sophomore OH
12. Jaelynn Skok, Senior DS/Libero
16. Jessi Macrae, Sophomore DS
18. Lily Kirry, Sophomore MB
1. Andrea Franks, Senior MB
6. Karilee Desautel, Junior MB
9. Emily Adams, Junior DS
10. Harmony Kuk, Sophomore S
11. Hailey Crise, Sophomore MB
13. Madison Siegel, Freshman OH
17. Alyssa Fitzgerald, Sophomore MB
19. Taya Tapia, Sophomore DS
20. Natalie Rose-Sheppard, Freshman M
1. Autumn Glover, Sophomore S/L
2. Avery Arnold, Sophomore OS/M
2. Ashlyn Kroiss, Freshman S/M
3. Sarah Foster, Freshman M
6. Emily Lien, Senior M
7. Saki Sugeno, Senior DS
8. Rachel Wyss, Freshman O
9. Willow Clarke-Hubert, Sophomore M
10. Eva Steuer, Senior M
12. Annika Liefrink, Senior M
13. Baylee Sobosky, Freshman S/M
14. Erica Tindal, Freshman O/M/S
15. Lexi Robertson, Freshman OS/M
17. Hannah Kircher, Sophomore DS
20. Cassie Dell, Freshman M