Volleyball opens season Saturday

Aug 15th, 2013 @ 2:22 pm | Author: Mark Potts, Sports Information Director
Two weeks of Fall camp practices come to a close this weekend for the Valley City State volleyball team.

The Vikings kick off the 2013 season with matches against both Viterbo University and Waldorf College as part of a triangular Saturday at Jamestown College. VCSU will play Viterbo at 11 a.m. and Waldorf College at 5 p.m.

Valley City State graduated just one senior off last year's squad that posted a 15-22 overall record and went 10-5 in their final 15 matches.

"We return good experience from last year's team and our newcomers have been a great addition as they've transitioned smoothly into the program," said head coach Susan Kolbow, who is entering her fourth year coaching the Vikings. "We are looking to build off last year's late-season success."

Kolbow's squad was picked third in the North Star Athletic Association preseason coaches' poll. Senior middle Aurissa Martens and sophomore defensive specialist Emily Plowman were both named to the Preseason All-Conference team.

Martens, a senior from Manitou, Manitoba, enters the season as Valley City's main attack threat. She led the team with 373 kills last year (2.94 per game) and had a .255 attack percentage. With 667 career kills in her first three seasons, a big senior year could vault Martens into the school's career Top 10 kill list.

As a freshman, Plowman played in all 37 matches, leading the team with 418 digs and 988 pass attempts. A native of Simi Valley, Calif., Plowman also posted a stellar .951 passing percentage.

The Vikings will also look to senior Anna Neufeld (Steinbach, Manitoba) and sophomore Stephanie Miller (Esko, Minn.) for court leadership from the setter position. Neufeld (553) and Miller (566) combined for 1,119 assists last season. Rachel Hummel (West Fargo, N.D.), Alley Theroux (Cold Lake, Alberta) and Kaitlyn Heuring (Winnipeg, Manitoba) all played significant attack roles last season and will be expected to contribute even more in 2013.

"Aurissa is our main threat, but we have to have balance in our offense," said Kolbow. "Teams will tend to focus on Aurissa, so that means our other hitters will have to step up and score some points."

Valley City State is scheduled to play in six tournaments and will host eight home matches throughout the season. The home schedule begins Sept. 11 when rival Jamestown College visits the Vikings' home court at Graichen Gymnasium. VCSU has eight conference games on the schedule, playing home-and-away matches with North Star members Jamestown College, Mayville State, Dakota State and Presentation College.
VCSU Volleyball Schedule