Mountain Lion volleyball team to rely on added experience

Sept. 7, 2015

Taylor Garcia
[email protected]

A more experienced, but still young, Mountain Lion volleyball team will take to the court this fall.

While only two upperclassmen return, the returning six sophomores are going to be a big factor in helping the freshmen grow and the team succeed.

“We have pretty high expectations for this team, especially for the fact that we are such a young team,” said head coach Chrissy Elder. “Most of our young players have significant experience having played their freshman year last year.”

The Mountain Lions were picked sixth in the preseason conference coaches’ poll and will compete in the newly created Rocky Division of the RMAC with MSU Denver, Colorado Mesa, Regis, South Dakota Mines, Chadron State and Westminster.

“Our team is still really young, but we returned most of our starters from last year,” said junior middle blocker Cassidy Bush. “This has been the best preseason we’ve had as a team since my freshman year.”

The lone senior, outside hitter Kim Catlett, was named preseason All-RMAC.

“I am really excited for this year,” said Catlett. “I think this group of girls is willing to put in the work that Chrissy expects from this program.”

“We have big plans for this season and everyone has completely bought in and is committed to working as hard as possible to accomplish these goals,” said redshirt sophomore setter Morgan Evans.

After four games in Texas to start the year, the Mountain Lions return to the Gallogly Events Center to play five games in four days.

On Sept. 8 they will host Angelo State University at 6 p.m., followed by the Steel and Silver Classic where UCCS will host St. Edwards on Sept. 10 at 7 p.m., Tarleton State on Sept. 11 at 2 p.m., Washburn on Sept. 11 at 7 p.m. and Eastern New Mexico on Sept. 12 at 7 p.m.

The 5 matches at home are against teams in the region, meaning winning those matches now will help later in the season to place the Mountain Lions regionally.

The difficulty of the early season schedule is in hopes to prepare the team for regular season RMAC games.

“The RMAC in general is a very tough conference, so every game will be a challenge for us,” said Elder.

“Our team is built around family – we consider (the student body) a part of that family and hope (you) will want to be involved in what we are trying to build,” Elder added.