Volleyball starts their regular season off strong

The ladies are now two games into their regular season, easily overcoming Byron Center and EGR. The Rangers have already faced many tough teams in the pre-season tournaments.

Tuesday’s match against EGR, which resulted in a three-set sweep by the Rangers, proved many things regarding this season’s outcome. The ladies had high expectations after their long playoff run last year. However, the road back to the regional finals may be difficult with a new team on the court.

“It was hard for underclassmen to integrate with the team,” Junior Letizia Cumbo-Nacheli said. “But some of our early tourney wins have built up our confidence.”

It’s no surprise that the ladies have a strong starting line-up, led by seniors Sarah Dunn, Averie Zaschak, Kate Hotaling, and Ally Werkema, but a big question has been the depth in their line-up. Tuesday night’s match proved just how strong the Ranger’s back-ups are.

Coach Natalie Roelfzema took a different approach in Tuesday’s match’s second and third sets against the East Grand Rapids Pioneers. Fans saw some faces that they don’t usually see on the court. Many non-starters received a lot of playing time and proved one major point the Rangers are trying to make. They have substantial depth in their lineup. Players such as sophomore Meredith Bethea and juniors Letizia Cumbo-Nacheli, Elana Kavanagh, and Anna Thornburg are just a few who made a big impact on the outcome of the match. Elana had some impressive blocks, and Letizia had many great attacks. If outsiders watched these girls play, you would think they were the starters, and this team was state championships bound.

The ladies have started the season off strong and have shown no signs of slowing down. If there’s one thing for sure, the ladies will go far in the post-season this year.