Volleyball to build on team’s success

The Northern Kentucky University volleyball team is set to open their 2008 season on the road in the University of Tampa Classic on Aug. 29.

NKU, who is coming off their 15 consecutive 20-win season after completing their 2007 season with a 26-9 record, is scheduled to play Central Oklahoma, who concluded their 2007 season with a 32-7 record and a NCAA II Southwest Regional semifinal berth.

The Norse will then play Florida Southern and Tampa, the NCAA II Southwest Regional runner-ups and champions, respectively, on Aug. 30.

NKU is scheduled to face Lindsey Wilson, on Sept. 3, to open their home season, and are set to begin conference play on the road at Kentucky Wesleyan on Sept. 9 before traveling to play Lewis, the two-time Great Lake Valley Coach (GLVC) defending champs, on Sept. 13.

The Norse, who finished last year’s conference play with a 14-5 record, were able to clinch a NCAA Division II tournament appearance last season and received 29 total points from the GLVC East Division coaches to be ranked third in the GLVC East Division preseason poll.

Although NKU will play the 2008 season without All-America middle hitter Liz Holmes, who is also NKU’s all-time leader in kills with 1,850 total, the Norse have made several key additions to their 2008 roster.

The Norse added sophomore middle hitter Kim Nemcek, a transfer from Winona State, who last year led Winona in total blocks with 73 and recorded 275 kills and .271 hitting percentage.

NKU also added 6-foot-3 senior right-side hitter Kelsey Wesaw, a transfer from Findlay, who finished sixth in the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference with a .329 hitting percentage and also earned All-Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference.

Other important roster additions exists with the addition of Sarah Drennen, a 5-foot-10 outside hitter from Woodstock, lll., who earned All-Fox Valley Conference honors at Woodstock High School last season, and Holy Family transfer Maria Scherrer, who was ranked fifth nationally in the NCAA II statistics averaging 6.87 digs per game. Scherrer also collected 900 totoal digs in 38 matches, the second highest in the nation.

In addition to the new roster additions, the Norse will be welcoming back five starters from last season including Krisitina Eisenmenger and Natalie Forbes, who were both honorable mention All-Americans last season.

“Kristina and Natalie are excellent players who know our system, and we expect much from them because they are seniors,” Head Coach Chia said according the NKU Sports Information Web site. “I can see both of them challenging for All-America honors again this year.”

Other Norse players returning include Katie Latenser, Megan Dooley, Chelsea Clark, and Annie Lucas.

Click here for the Volleyball page for more information.