After over two months of open gyms, clinics, tryouts and spirited practices, YOUR Acalanes Varsity Volleyball Dons officially hit the court this weekend for the Sonoma Valley Invitational.
The Dons have a brand new coaching staff, led by Haley Walsh, former collegiate player (Grand Canyon/Portland State) and Las Lomas Knight. Joining Haley on the staff are Alan Go (Freshman girls and JV boys coach last season) and Roman Seguerre (former Berean Christian volleyball coach). This group brings a ton of energy and experience to our program, along with consistently positive instruction.
The Dons will feature a deep and experienced roster this season, with nine returners and seven new players on the Varsity squad. Of the sixteen Lady Dons, there are seven seniors, eight juniors and one sophomore.
The front lines for the Dons are stacked. Hitters Madi Risch (Sr.), Annika Olson (Jr.), Makenzie Sauer (Jr.), Lauren Davis (Jr.) and Elena Needs (Jr.) will cover the outside/left-side duties. At middle hitter, the Dons have Kennedy Cornish (Sr.), Kylie Wood (Sr.) and sophomore Aly Kirke. On the opposite/right-side, Erin Meade (Jr.) and Olivia Elliott (Sr.) will be joined by Kirke as well. These versatile players are sure to mix and match throughout the season, as the Dons have lots of height and power to score in bunches and counter the opponent’s attack.
The setting duties will be handled by senior Lane Webster, who is back in action after an injury-plagued 2018, and Aisha Mohanty, last year’s featured setter on the JV team. The lefty Webster may not just set, she can be found on the attack as well.
Defensively, the Dons have athletes to spare. Specialists Sydney Sowarby (Jr.), Kaylin Hiatt (Sr.), Daisy Sibley (Jr.) and Parker Jung (Sr.) will be showing off their quickness and precision in the back row. As a former defensive whiz, Coach Walsh is sure to put her stamp on this group.
Expectations for this year’s squad are running high, as they should be. Your Dons begin the always-tough Diablo-Foothill league slate with a home match against a school from Moraga on Tuesday, September 24th at 6:30pm. The match will be preceded by the Freshman and JV matches. The gym will be electric! Boosters members get in free with their membership card. #Donsshowup !