*This season preview was apart of the 2015 Hastings Tribune Fall Sports Preview Issue. It was published on August 27th, 2015.
Expectations are on the rise for the Doniphan-Trumbull Volleyball team in Head Coach Gina Fitch’s second season. The Cardinals, who finished with a 14-16 record in 2014, will look for leadership from senior Lauren Hinrichs.
Hinrichs, a 2014 All-State OH/MB, highly touted recruit and four-year starter, is expected to be a force for the Cardinals on the court this season.
“We have a talented group of athletes returning with a lot of game experience,” Fitch said. “They’ll be led by Wichita State recruit Lauren Hinrichs.”
Including Hinrichs, the Cardinals return five starters from the 2014 team. That list includes fellow senior Kiana Pfeifer and juniors Makenna Niemoth, Carsyn Poppe and Abby Williams. Doniphan-Trumbull expects juniors Ellie Koch and Ana Terrazas to contribute, as well as Freshman Logan Poppe.
The Cardinals have a tough schedule ahead, with games against Loup Platte Conference opponents Kearney Catholic and Ord highlighting the schedule.
“Kearney Catholic and Ord are in our conference and they’re both strong programs and have talented players,” Fitch said. “St. Cecilia and Adams Central aren’t too far away and are always strong teams to compete against.”
Despite that tough schedule, Fitch is pleased with her team’s offseason progress and remains excited for the season ahead.
“I’m looking forward to exciting things happening for our program this season. The girls have been spending a lot of time in the gym together in the off-season to work on the court chemistry that makes a team great,” Fitch said. “They are putting in tremendous efforts to improve their strength, speed, conditioning and fundamental skills and I am confident it will pay off for them in the fall.”
The Cardinals will take the court on September 3 against Blue Hill High School in the first game of the season.