From the very start of the season, the 2015 Bluejay varsity volleyball squad had made their presence felt by every opponent, win or lose.
When the ladies lost, it wasn’t by much and when the ladies won, they won big.
The Jays assembled yet another prolific season including a 15-game win-streak near the end of the regular season and a powerhouse run into the postseason.
Unfortunately, the ladies’ run came to an abrupt end in a 3-1 loss to the 18th-ranked Altoona Railroaders in the WIAA Medford Sectional finals.
Despite the loss, the Jays signed 2015 off with a convincing 37-7-1 season record to go with a 11-1 Valley title, prompting prolific post-season accolades. When the All-WVC squads were released, six Jays dotted the list, including 3 unanimous 1st teamers in Ali Zamzow, Anna Finnell and Emily Page.
Page and Zamzow also garnered WVCA All-State Honorable Mention honors in recognition of their accomplishments on the hardwood this season.
“Ali came on strong this season as our libero,” comments head coach Kristi Krug. “After being a defensive specialist the past two seasons she led the defensive charge to have a ‘no ball hits the floor’ attitude. She reached a career milestone of 1,230 digs with 610 being in a single season. She was a two-year captain and a patient leader who passed on her knowledge of the game to the younger players.”
Finnell also posted considerable numbers this season as the Jays’ overall kill-leader and placing second in the talent-laden WVC; trailing Everest’s Regan Stefan by just 3 kills (150).
“Anna had a career high of 839 kills,” Krug adds. “I’ve seen Anna become more confident in her hitting and more versatile strategically in hitting different shots. Opponents had a hard time being on the receiving end of one of Anna’s powerful attacks. She is a second-year unanimous First Team award winner.”
Senior Emily Page ran the roost in terms of assists both at the team and conference levels.
In fact, only Marshfield’s Anna Ripp came anywhere close to Page’s 411 conference assists, with just 335.
“Emily set a 5-1 offensive for two seasons for the Bluejays, which tallied some impressive stats for assists. Emily had a season high of 1,170 assists and a career total of 2,413. Emily was a consistent server at 97% for the season. She was a leader on the court and a positive role model for her teammates.” Krug noted.
Senior captain and middle hitter Rylee Folz was named Second Team All-WVC for the second consecutive year.
“Rylee’s athleticism is what made her a force at the net,” Krug explains. “She had a career total of 703 kills and 302 blocks. She was a senior captain and led this team with a positive and caring attitude.”
Krug and her entourage of staff have plenty to be optimistic about in terms of what the future holds, thanks to the repeat Honorable Mention selection of junior right-side hitter Katie Zelinski and the progression of sophomore middle hitter Morgan Wardall.
“Katie finished the season with 222 kills and 85 blocks,” Krug adds. “She is a second year varsity player and received honorable mention last year. Katie is a strong right-side player who has learned to be successful in this position. She was become increasingly more aggressive and confident. I’m looking to her to be a leader next season.”
“Morgan is a second-year starter and has progressed from a freshman that made some mistakes to a dominating middle hitter with a promising future. Morgan’s career kills are 519 and she has 170 blocks.”