Basehor-Linwood volleyball team won 20 matches for first time in 10 years
This year's Basehor-Linwood volleyball team reached a major goal. After finishing with more than 20 wins for the first time in a decade, the team is now focused on the next big step--reaching state.
"I think the girls should feel proud that they beat the 20 win mark, which hasn't happened for awhile for volleyball at Basehor-Linwood High School," Coach Tammy Zydlo said. "There were missed opportunities, wins we should have had, but the girls improved. Every year it will be our goal to win sub state and to go on to state. I want every team to want to be the team that goes to state. That has to be a goal-- it's what all teams work for."
Despite a quick first round sub state exit against Tonganoxie, Zydlo was pleased with the 21-15 season.
"This is a great step forward for building a volleyball tradition at Basehor-Linwood High School," Zydlo said. "Success doesn't happen overnight, and I see this as being a journey. The girls that are playing volleyball right now ... a lot of them don't have the experience that girls on other teams have. They were still able to put together a pretty good volleyball team."
The team loses seven seniors, Cassie Lombardino, Michelle Chrisman, Elyse Douglas, Ashley Jeannin, Chelsey Patton, Brooke Sanders, and Jennifer Sirridge-- six of which were a part of the starting lineup.
Next year's team will definitely have an identity change.
"The first thing that comes to mind is it will be a more balanced team," Zydlo said. "We relied heavily on Chelsey and Cassie for the kills. That means the hitters are going to have to come along next year."
Zydlo said it would also be difficult to fill the hole at setter, which Brooke Sanders occupied for more than three years.
Kara Douglas, Amber Jeannin, Jenna Bunting, Stephanie Marshall will be seniors next year.
"Kara Douglas will be in her fourth year of varsity experience," Zydlo said. "With Kara, I can pretty much put her in any position and she can play. She is very versatile."
Zydlo said of Jeannin: "I will rely on her as our main defensive specialist," and of Bunting and Marshall, who are outside hitters: "They are going to have to be ready to play varsity."
Bunting was injured for much of this season.
"Stephanie did a great job on the junior varsity team--she improved a lot," Zydlo said.
Cassie Beaver and Courtney Hooks will play big roles next season as well.
Zydlo said Beaver will play outside or middle hitting positions. She led the JV team in kills this year.
The coach is expecting Hooks to step in for a star: "I am expecting her to fill Cassie Lomardino's shoes and be a font court force. I think she is up to that challenge."
Next year's team will be young but talented.
"Immediately many JV players will have to have a big impact on the varsity team," Zydlo said. "At the varsity level it is a little quicker pace, so if the players are able to adjust, I think we will do just fine. I think we will finish in the top 3, for sure, in the KVL. Physically I think they can do it."