The Pacific Index

Boxer volleyball players expect success

Bobby Ulrich

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Experience and team chemistry will be the driving force for the 2018-19 volleyball season.

After finishing 2-2 in Colorado last week, the volleyball team is off to a positive start as they now head into conference play.

Finishing second in the conference last year, the Boxers have their sights on a conference championship and will be relying on their core returners to carry the pace and intensity from years past.

Returning starter, junior Mila Ivkovic, has already started an impressive season as she nearly broke a school record with 16 kills in a match against New Rochelle.

“The high number of returners this season has helped us focus strictly on volleyball because we have already established a strong team bond from years past,” Ivkovic said.

Joining Ivkovic on the front line is junior outside hitter Karlee Duncan, who has been a key component for the Boxers for the past three years.

Duncan commented, “Consistency is a big goal and is crucial to our team improvement if we play as a cohesive unit, our team is able to rise and give any team a run for their money.”

With a strong offensive presence, the volleyball team will need to continue to improve defensively and have consistent serves in crucial moments.

A defensive gap that will have to be filled this year is the position of libero that has currently been taken up by some new talent.

Last year, 2018 alumna Anna VanderWeyst was awarded Libero of the Year, and so far freshman Haley Walz has risen to the occasion.

“Walz’s hustle, drive, and willingness to learn has helped make the transition seamless,” Ivkovic said.

Walz has been described by her peers as an extremely talented player and will continue to work hard as the year progresses.

The Boxers will host Whitman College Sept. 21 and Whitworth University the following day, Sept. 22, at the Stoller Center.

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Boxer volleyball players expect success