After a superb 2012 season that netted the Mendon High School varsity volleyball team a 52-7-1 record, a St. Joseph Valley league championship and a trip to the Class D state semifinals, longtime head coach Kathy Trenary’s squad makes the transition to Class C this year.
Five seniors return for the Hornets, including Michigan Interscholastic Volleyball Coaches Association all-state second-team mentions Alexis Russell (middle hitter) and Brooke Howard (middle hitter). Jordan Van Oss, who made quite an entrance as a freshman last season, made the third team.
Howard had a hitting percentage of .387 with 418 kills and 330 digs to her credit. Russell collected 285 kills, 84 aces, 280 digs and 79 blocks on her way to a .303 hitting percentage and .920 serving percentage. Van Oss hit at a clip of .315 and finished with 249 kills, 81 aces and 289 digs, while serving .910 and hitting .315.
“[Howard is] tall, strong, fast and a tremendously hard hitter,” Trenary said. “One speed — all out — and loves to compete. [Russell is] tall, excellent blocker, smart, sees the court well and will take the kill wherever it presents itself. [Van Oss is] a 5-foot-5 outside hitter with a total read of the court, quick decision making, alert and deceptive.”
With contributions form junior outside hitter, Rachel Frisbie, freshman middle hitter Megan Leighton, freshman outside hitter Kaley Smith, junior outside hitter Abbi Sweet and freshman middle hitter Megan Leighton, Mendon is set up to compete with the top tier of schools in Class C.
“Keep it simple, take one play at a time, don’t dream, don’t dwell and enjoy,” Trenary said of her philosophy as the 2013 season picks up steam. Jean LaClair (Bronson coach) is a savvy coach. She always brings competitive, well-trained teams into the season. They are fun to play against. Centreville and White Pigeon have to be watched; they are trying to beat us both and carry the confidence that they can.”
Coach: Kathy Trenary (19th year)
2012 recap: The Hornets posted an 8-1 league record for an SJV crown, won district and regional titles and finished the year 52-7-1 after a loss to Beal City in the Class D state semifinals.
Key players in 2013: Loryn Baughman (Sr., S); Cierra Furlong (Sr., OH); Brooke Howard (Sr., MH); Danielle Parsons (Sr., DS); Alexis Russell (Sr., MH); Jackie Friel (Jr., L); Jordan Van Oss (So., OH).