New faces look for a familiar Osakis volleyball season
The Osakis volleyball team will feature a bit of a different look this fall after losing seven letter winners to graduation.
The Silverstreaks go into almost every season as one of the teams to beat in the Prairie Conference and that is still the goal for a new group of athletes looking to leave their mark on the program.
Osakis is fresh off a 9-1 record in league play and a 2015 title, while going 16-8 overall. Abby Stroup, Alli Scherr, Brittney Sadlemyer, Ana Chisholm, Taharah Hovey, Jessie LeBrun and Shania Zarbok all graduated, but longtime head coach Kirsten Wessel likes the team she has to work with.
"We have a great camaraderie and a desire to improve every day," Wessel said. "There's a good core group of returners. This group plays defense with a lot of intensity."
Wessel added that the goals should be to win the conference again this season and be a top three team in the subsection and a competitor within the 6AA field come tournament time.
It's a section that has proved challenging in years past. Wessel views Sauk Centre, Albany and Melrose as some of the top teams in the North half this fall and Maple Lake and Rocori once again pushing to be the top team overall. Rocori won the section title a year ago in a 3-2 match against Sauk Centre.
Osakis will lean on six returning letter winners and a handful of newcomers to remain competitive. Morgan Staloch (MH/OH), Hannah Lien (S) and Kayla Sorenson (OH) are three senior starters back to help with that. Jordyn Rajdl (OH), Jessica Bliese (OH) and Corinne Collins (OH) also return as letter winners.
Juniors Emma Johnson (DS), Bree Timmerman, Cindy VanAcker, Harlie Falzone and sophomores Jordyn Stroup, Megan Peikert, Tianna Stanek and Ellie Pahl are some of the players looking to break onto the varsity scene this fall.
SENIORS — Morgan Staloch, Hannah Lien, Kayla Sorenson, Jordyn Rajdl, Jessica Bliese
JUNIORS — Emma Johnson, Bree Timmerman, Harlie Falzone, Corinne Collins, Cindy VanAcker
SOPHOMORES — Jordyn Stroup, Tianna Stanek, Megan Peikert, Ellie Pahl
COACHES — Head coach — Kirsten Wessel — 11th season with Osakis, 311-228-7 career record; Assistant coaches — Adam Saltmarsh, Samantha Chisholm