Augusta head coach Brian Hallmark has high expectations for his girls this season, after returning four seniors and a second team all-league sophomore from a team that finished third in the AVCTL III with a record of 17-19.
“I expect us to be mentally tougher this year as compared to previous years,” said Hallmark.
“Not taking anything away from last year's team, I think this year's team has an even stronger chemistry. With a stronger chemistry, expectations are high, but mistakes will happen and the girls know they have each other's back.”
Augusta seniors Maddie Livingston, Kenzie Kirk, Jennifer Siviseth, and Jaci Bogner will provide experience and leadership to the rest of the Orioles. Last season Livingston earned second team All-League honors, while Kenzie Kirk was selected All-League honorable mention.
Sophomore Jadyn Jackson was also selected second team All-league last season. Junior Makenzie Terry will also take on a bigger role for the Orioles this seaon. The Orioles have some extremely talented athletes returning, but are also expecting some freshman to step into important roles.
Tommie Schaffner, Avery Riedel, and Catryna Winzer were all playing middle school volleyball last season, and will have to make the jump to varsity this season.
Hallmark is expecting his upperclassmen to lead the younger players and help them make the transition to varsity.
“We are hoping the learning curve for all of them to step up in their new roles and make an impact will be relatively quick. Hopefully with all this experience returning, our leadership on and off the floor will be even better than last year.”
Augusta will open their season with a trip to the Winfield tournament on Saturday, Aug. 25.