Tomahawk volleyball looking for another strong season

Junior Riley Taitingfong expects to compete for the setter position after the graduation of last year’s all-league April Bobadilla. - DANIELLE SZULCZEWSKI Sports Reporter
Junior Riley Taitingfong expects to compete for the setter position after the graduation of last year’s all-league April Bobadilla.
— image credit: DANIELLE SZULCZEWSKI Sports Reporter

For a team that graduated four all-league players last year, Marysville volleyball has a lot to be happy about.

Although the departure of hitters Kristeen Juarez, Jessica Masters, Anna West and setter April Bobadilla will be felt, the Tomahawks return five players with varsity experience and have several more new faces with a lot of potential.

Among the returning faces are seniors and league first-team picks Emily Boerger (hitter) and Jadelyn Thompson (libero).

“They’re really easy for me because they know what’s going on,” said volleyball coach Shelly Johnson. “Jadelyn is our captain and she’s doing a great job, talking to people when they’re slowing down.”

Senior hitter Taylor Olsen also saw substantial playing time on last year’s team.

The Tomahawk volleyball program relies a lot on its competitive system among the freshman and JV ranks, making transitions as seamless as possible at the varsity level. Hitters Cali Cull and Mikayla LaRosa are hoping to leave their mark on this year’s squad after swinging between varsity and JV much of last season. Johnson is also hoping for big things from a transfer student, senior Jenna Welsh, who certainly left an impression during the spring track season when she took second at state in the javelin.

One of the important questions yet to be answered about this year’s team is at setter. Junior Riley Taitingfong and senior Brittany Fitzmaurice are competing for the job often likened to a squad’s quarterback. After a week of practice, Johnson was still weighing whether to start one or split the duties.

In any event, Marysville enters the season ready to play. Johnson counts the team’s experience as one of its strengths and with a summer tournament schedule under their belt, the girls kick off their season at Snohomish and then face last year’s three state-qualifying squads out of Wesco. They’ll host Monroe Sept. 11, visit Kamiak Sept. 16 and host Edmonds-Woodway Sept. 18, without much of a break.

“It’s a pretty talented team,” Johnson said. “It’s nice to have a bunch of veteran kids come in and know what they’re doing.”

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