10 TO KNOW
Nola Basey, Sr., Lyons: She provided just over 50 percent of the Lions’ offense last season and she’ll be called upon to be a dominant force for the young team again in 2012.
Hannah Boyer, Sr., Broomfield: She’ll spearhead the offensive attack as the Eagles look to rebound from a disappointing end to last season
Margaret Davis, Jr., Silver Creek: As a sophomore, she played a major role in the Raptors’ 2011 state-tournament run and her role will increase to fill in for graduated stars.
Dailyn Johnson, Jr., Longmont: The blocks leader on last year’s Trojans front line, she’ll anchor the defense up front and also play a big role on offense again in 2012.
Taylor Langer, Sr., Centaurus: Looking to lead a revival, the Warriors will look to her as not only their best all-around player, but their most vocal and inspirational leader.
Paige Lindgren, Sr., Fairview: Last year’s kills leader for the Knights, she’ll be looking for a repeat performance as a senior.
Addy Lofstedt, Sr., Monarch: A major threat on the outside as a junior, she could be poised to put up huge offensive numbers, especially not having to share attacks with Hannah Safari.
Becca Mau, Sr., Longmont: In 2011, she led the competitive 4A Northern Conference with 430 kills as a sophomore and will reprise her role as the Trojans featured striker in 2012.
Michealla Sulek, Sr., Silver Creek: Over 100 blocks and 100 kills last season and will have to be a two-way leader again for the Raptors.
Sarah Weestra, Sr., Holy Family: Playing setter, she will have to carry a big load for the Tigers, who lost a trio of the state’s best 3A players, including setter Kelsey Cribari.
— 1A, 2A district tournaments to be completed by Oct. 27.
— Regional tournaments for all classifications to be completed by Nov. 3.
— State championships for all classes will be held Nov. 9-10 at the Denver Coliseum.
ALEXANDER DAWSON MUSTANGS
Coach: Alex Bodayla (1st year).
Last year: 3-15.
Returning starters: Katherine Bernal (Jr., MH/OH), Lisa Pelikan (Jr., S), Lauren Rainey (Jr., MH), Devanshi Desai (Sr., L), Emily Oliver (Sr., MH), Cassidey Priegle (Sr., DS).
Others to watch: Gaby Greenfield (So., S), Sammy Morrison (Jr., RS), Annie Halseth (Sr., DS).
Outlook: The Mustangs are returning nearly the entirety of last year’s starting lineup for new coach Alex Bodayla. Their blocking up front will be solid to start the season and will remain their focus while the offense continues to improve.
Coach: Angela Sultzer (2nd year).
Last year: 6-15.
Returning starters: Bella Greer (Jr., S), Michaela McKeown (Sr., OH), Joelle Burkhardt (Jr., L), Erin Houlihan (Sr., MB), Courtney Van Bussum (Sr., MB).
Others to watch: Cassidy Evans (So., OH).
Outlook: Year 2 of the rebuilding project under Sultzer comes with plenty of enthusiasm in the Panthers camp. While DePaul recruit Tyler Graham has graduated, the Panthers return five other starters and are poised to climb the Front Range League ladder.
Coach: Monica Tuz (10th year).
Last year: 7-12.
Returning starters: Hannah Boyer (Sr., OH), Kailee VanTine (Sr., S), Hannah Deardorff (Sr., L), Lindsey Ross (Sr., RS), Rachel Dye (Sr., RS/OH).
Others to watch: Callie Kaiser (So., OH/S), Monro Obenauer (Jr., OH), Brenna Frankell (Fr., M), Tori Biggerstaff (So., M).
Outlook: After a disappointing finish last year, the Eagles’ numerous returning players are looking to redeem themselves by finishing in the top half of the 4A Northern Conference. They will have to start strong, however, as the Eagles open the season against 5A opponent Legacy and then take on Longmont, the defending league champion.
Coach: Bev Sanders (16th year).
Last year: 2-17.
Returning starters: Taylor Langer (Sr., OH), Katie Wirth (Sr., M), Lauren Kapushion (Sr., M), Haley Amidei (Jr., OH).
Others to watch: Rylee Stever (Jr., OH), Tina Drexel (Jr., L).
Outlook: Veteran coach Bev Sanders said this year will be all about building confidence and basic skills for the Warriors. Once the Warriors have mastered the basics, Sanders believes they will be a fun, athletic team to watch.
Coach: Abby Hicks (4th year).
Last year: 9-12. Eliminated in 4A district play.
Returning starters: Cambry Prichard (Sr., OH/M).
Others to watch: Keegan Sakalosky (Jr., M), Lauren Bauchert (Jr., M), Courtney Kaiser (So., L/DS).
Outlook: The Tigers won’t return much experience this season as they graduated seven seniors from last year’s team and have just one starter coming back. But the young group is enthusiastic and ready to work hard, which has coach Abby Hicks “extremely excited” about the upcoming season.
Coach: Brooke Simmons (8th year).
Last year: 9-12. Eliminated in 5A district play.
Returning starters: Paige Lindgren (Sr., OH), Alex Flynn (Sr., L), Alison Yardley (Jr., RS/MB).
Others to watch: Courtney Roberts (Sr., OH), Tori Anderson (Sr., MB), Kiani Rayford (Jr., MB).
Outlook: Knights coach Brooke Simmons described this year’s team as, “A competitive, determined group of players working toward a common goal.” The Knights’ emphasis on ball control to take advantage of their multiple offensive options will be primary key to their success.
FAITH BAPTIST PIONEERS
Coach: Nicki Doan (1st year).
Last year: 19-3. Front Range Christian Athletic Association champions.
Returning starters: Hailey Schulman (Sr., S).
Others to watch: Tiffany Caluag (Jr., S), Jenny King (So., OH), Karli Widen (Sr., MB).
Outlook: The Pioneers will enter the season the defending champions in the Front Range Christian Athletic Association. Senior setter Hailey Schulman is the only returning starter from last year’s team and she will be called upon to do a lot for her team. Throw in a new coach and this could be a rebuilding year for the Pioneers.
Coach: Jamie Bradt (12th year).
Last year: 12-7. Eliminated in 4A district play.
Returning starters: Courtney Zimmerman (Sr., M/RS), Brittney Pepitone (Sr., M/RS), Veronica Flores (Jr., DS).
Others to watch: Sabrina Duey (Jr., OH), Brooklyn LeBon (Jr., OH), Jessica Wedel (Jr., OH), Codi Whitmer (Jr., S), MaKenzie DiGesualdo (So., S/RS).
Outlook: The Warriors have many versatile players capable of playing multiple positions, prompting them to mix up their lineup to start this season and potentially on a game-by-game basis. Talented and deep, but still young, the Warriors expect to show improvement in bunches but they’re also expected to have bumpy patches along the way.
HOLY FAMILY TIGERS
Coach: Bryan Winther (1st year).
Last year: 21-7. Eliminated in 3A state tournament play.
Returning starters: Sarah Weerstra (Sr., S), Claudia Pena (Jr., MB).
Others to watch: Megan Digiralomo (Jr., RS), Blayke Hranicka (So., MB), Tylynn Nelson (Jr., L).
Outlook: Having graduated all-state players Kassy Johanssen and Mary Franz, new varsity players must fill a huge offensive void. On the strength of a scrappy defense and an athletic front row, the Tigers expect to continue their trend of excellence under first-year head coach Bryan Winther.
Coach: Lora Faust (1st year).
Last year: 11-11. Eliminated in 5A district play.
Returning starters: Aleka Stevens (Sr., OH),
Others to watch: Justyn Schlaack (Sr., OH/M), Kelly Scharleu (Jr., M), MaKenna Rockeman (So., OH/RS).
Outlook: The Lightning graduated seven seniors after the 2011 season but the players have trained especially hard this season to fill in their numerous new roles. First-year head coach Lora Faust said the Lightning will have to come together as a cohesive, disciplined unit this season to be successful.
Coach: Holli Stetson (9th year).
Last year: 23-6. Eliminated in 4A state tournament play.
Returning starters: Becca Mau (Jr., OH), Lacy Haddock (So., OH/MB), Cloie Cox (Sr., OH), Maddie Precht (Jr., MB), Dailyn Johnson (Jr., MB), Lyndie Haddock (So., RS/S).
Others to watch: Elena Michalski (Jr., S/RS), Kailee Brazell (Jr., S/DS), Sydney Wetterstrom (Fr., MB/RS).
Outlook: After last year’s surprise run, the Trojans are looking forward to defending their 4A Northern Conference title. They’ll miss Kelly Graham, last year’s leader and setter. But with the bulk of their 2011 lineup returning and an athletic roster littered with multi-sport athletes, the Trojans should be just as formidable a club as a year ago.
LONGMONT CHRISTIAN WARRIORS
Coach: Lester Thorne (3rd year).
Last year: 11-11. Eliminated in 2A district play.
Returning starters: Carolyn Mitschke (Jr., S/OH), Mary Dean (Jr., S/OH), Ashley Jauregui (Jr., L/DS/OH).
Others to watch: Alyssa Rusco (Sr., OH), Elizabeth Her (Jr., MB).
Outlook: Since they have no returning senior starters, the Warriors are likely to struggle with a lack of experience other than tireless worker Alyssa Rusco. But the Warriors could be tough if the junior class, led by three-year starter Ashley Jauregui, can take a step forward on the court in 2012.
Coach: Jeff Klipstein (5th year).
Last year: 9-14. Eliminated in 2A district play.
Returning starters: Nola Basey (Sr., OH/MH), Genna Gibson (Sr., L/DS), Joelle Holst (Sr., DS), Madeline Keen (Jr., OH), Sidney Stevelink (So., S).
Others to watch: Jessica Boxrud (Fr., S/DS), Meagan Keen (Fr., OH), Ashlyn Christianson (Fr., RS/M).
Outlook: The Lions are optimistic about dropping down for the 2A postseason, where they hope their experience from the 3A Patriot League will help have serve them well. With the players they’re getting back, the Lions could have solid success if they can develop talented freshmen behind senior Nola Basey.
Coach: Rachel Ayers (4th year).
Last year: 13-12. Eliminated in 3A district play.
Returning starters: Molly Neiley (Sr., OH), Kelsey Lutz (SR., MH), Morgan Brim (Jr., S), Paige Feaster (Sr., DS), Mary Kate Haller (Sr., DS).
Others to watch: Mikayla Martinez (Jr., RS), Allison Mujerus (Jr., OH), Maddie Uilk (So., MH).
Outlook: The Mavericks are a tall, physical group but according to coach Rachel Ayers, they need to work on their passing and fundamental defense before they can reach their full potential. Many of the players have been around since the program’s inception in 2009 so they have the unique experience of trying to realize goals set in motion three years ago.
Coach: Thomas Sullivan (1st year).
Last year: 19-6. Eliminated in 5A regional play.
Returning starters: Addy Lofstedt (Sr., OH), Kendall Peterson (Sr., OH/MB), Nicole Harris (Jr., S), Selby Kennedy (So., S).
Others to watch: Gigi Spector (Jr., MB), Stephanie Grosser (So., L).
Outlook: Looking to continue their recent success, the Coyotes will have to do it after graduating a lot of senior leadership and with players working in new positions. First-year head coach Thomas Sullivan said they’re hoping to finally accomplish their goal of reaching the state tournament.
Coach: Aubray McLain (2nd year).
Last year: 2-15.
Returning starters: Dayna Larsen (Sr., MB/OH), Kaylin Hass (Sr., L), Cori Januzzi (Jr., MB), Amanda Cook (Jr., S/RS), Danica Vigil (Sr., S/RS/OH).
Others to watch: Brenda Waggerby (Jr., RS/MB), Brianna Lindstrom (So., DS).
Outlook: The Panthers will rely on defense and senior leadership to try to improve on last year’s two-win season. As long as they continue to improve, coach Aubray McLain thinks the Panther have a shot to make it to the district level and possibly even a regional tournament.
Coach: Chris Koerner (3rd year).
Last year: 13-13. Eliminated in 4A regional play.
Returning starters: Jacqui Sigg (Sr., DS), Julia Vaiser (Sr., OH), Meghan Richard (Jr., S).
Others to watch: Renee Plomondon (Sr., RS), Chelsea Patterson (Jr., MB), Sarah McCaddon (Jr., OH/RS), Serena Stafford (Jr., DS), Cori Kirschling (So., OH), Kelsey Kosten (So., MB).
Outlook: The Cougars are a young, energetic group after graduating seven seniors last year. Seniors Renee Plomondon, Julia Vaiser and Jacqui Sigg will lead the team while setter Meghan Richard will be the driving force on offense. The 37 underclassmen in the Niwot program bodes well for the future but this season the Cougars are shooting for a regional tournament berth.
PEAK TO PEAK PUMAS
Coach: Pam Bergeland (2nd year).
Last year: 5-13.
Returning starters: Amy Haberthier (Sr., OH), Annette Warner (Jr., MB), Jordan Powley (So., S), Alison Hochstad (Sr., MH), Shannon Renville (Jr., L), Madison Frutchey (Jr., S/DS), Kaelyn Powers (So., OH).
Others to watch: Erin Mercado (Jr., DS), Allison Hankey (So., RS).
Outlook: The Pumas are returning seven players and expect to be more competitive this year than last year’s 5-13 campaign. Their experience will allow them to incorporate more complicated offenses and expect to give them a better shot at earning a regional berth out of the Metro League under the new 3A format.
SHINING MOUNTAIN LIONS
Coach: Joylyn Bopp (1st year).
Last year: 8-7.
Returning starters: Courtney Kibiloski (Sr., S).
Others to watch: Ginger Hutton (So., MH), Paisley Sheehan (So., MH), Franceska Suarez (So., MH).
Outlook: Shining Mountain expects to combine the height and talent of its middle hitters and the experience of its setters into a strong offense. Dedicated to improving their defense and transition, the Lions intend to impress upon their opponents the quality of their work ethic, sportsmanship and confidence while learning to take risks in tight situations. They’re hoping all of those things translate into success on the court.
SILVER CREEK RAPTORS
Coach: Nicholle Chambers (3rd year).
Last year: 20-9. Eliminated in 4A state tournament play.
Returning starters: Margaret Davis (Jr., L), Kayla Sulek (Jr., MB), Serana Hubert (So., DS).
Others to watch: Elizabeth Potter (So., OH), Teagan Knechtel (So., MB).
Outlook: After making it to the state tournament last year for the first time in school history, the Raptors lost a large senior group. They still expect to make another postseason run, however, riding the strength of Margaret Davis and Elizabeth Potter. This young Raptors group will have to jell quickly in the Northern Conference to accomplish its goal of upholding Silver Creek’s new winning tradition.
Coach: Will Rozum (4th year).
Last year: 4-15.
Returning starters: Deandra Elcock (Sr., OH), Naomi Barron (So., MB), Tiara Edwards (Sr., DS), Carrissa Curtis (Jr., RS).
Others to watch: Alyssa Steed (So., MB), Kaylee Spencer (Jr., OH/RS).
Outlook: The Falcon shave a hardworking group with an even blend of experience and young talent. With Naomi Barron fortifying the middle and Deandra Elcock threatening from the outside, coach Will Rozum thinks his team can surprise some teams in the Tri-Valley League, which he also thinks is more wide open than in recent years.