Jags feature 12 seniors; look to battle in tough NBL
The sky could be the limit for the Windsor High School volleyball squad this fall, as the Jaguars field one of the most experienced and well-balanced teams in the program’s history.
Head coach Rich Schwarz returns for his 15th campaign and has never been more optimistic about his team’s prospects, considering he has 12 seniors to lead the way.
“As you look over our roster you will notice two big differences from year’s past,” Schwarz said. “This is the largest team I’ve ever had and it also has the most seniors ever. Both of these are the result of a program that is continuing to grow.”
The Jaguars have expanded the varsity roster to 17 to guard against injuries, a factor that helped derail the team’s playoff chances in 2018.
“After starting last year with two starters out with illness and then losing a starting outside and right side hitter to injury at the end of the year, we didn't have the depth to compete in league or the playoffs,” Schwarz reflected. “With this year’s team we are three deep at every position.”
Key returning players for the Jags are senior All-League libero Izzy Earl, senior setter/right side hitter Katie Todd and senior outside hitter Madison Weber, all third year varsity players. Other key returnees are junior setter Hannah Dyer, seniors defensive specialists Faith St. Amant, Mara St. Amant and Madison Omiotek, senior middle blocker Brooke Rooney and senior right side hitter Pauline Woodard. Joining the varsity squad are seniors; right side/middle blocker Riley West and Ellery Charleton, junior defensive specialist Kaitlyn Curry, outside hitter Annika Todd, and sophomores; defensive specialist Daya Mosqueda and middle blockers Ella Daniel and Sofia Lopez. The team is still waiting for California Interscholastic Federation (CIF) clearance for Italian exchange student and outside hitter Vittoria Castelli.
Perhaps the team’s biggest strength is balance, with most players able to easily plug into the line-up and produce.
“We don't have the front row hitter who will single handedly get us 20 kills and lead us to victory, but we do have 6-8 players who will contribute kills each match,” Schwarz noted. “Having a more balanced attack makes a team harder to stop and gives us more options offensively.”
Jags post wins
Windsor is off to a solid, 3-3 start in both preseason and tournament competition, including wins over Ukiah, El Cerrito and Analy.
The Jags will be back on the court on Thursday, Sept. 12 when they host Healdsburg, followed by a Sept. 17 visit to Piner. The varsity match starts at 6 p.m.