Okemos volleyball coach Jamie Ianni’s volleyball team was 15-6 last year and 3-2 in the league for second place, but the highlight, considering the various COVID 19 restrictions, was being able to have a season.
“We graduated three starters with Chloe Krumm (setter), Lily Gorman (middle) and Niya Patel (opposite hitter),” Ianni said. “They were all valued players and teammates.”
This year’s team will be led by returning starters Taylor Stephens, Kayla Ozanich, Bethany Hartman, Sarah Hamel and Ella Woodward.
Stephens is a junior hitter, Kayla Ozanich a junior middle blocker, Hartman a senior outside hitter, Hamel a senior defensive specialist and Woodward, a senior libero.
Other contributor will be Ali Pignataro, a junior setter; Kennedi North, a junior middle; Mia Mardsen, a sophomore opposite and Sue Flores, a junior outside hitter.
“We are striving to meet our goal of winning a league and district championship,” Ianni said, adding that strengths “will be passing and serving which will result in a strong offense.”
Ianni is confident of having a league contender.
“Dewitt and Grand Ledge are very strong this fall and all three of our programs will be challenging for a conference championship,” Ianni said. “Just knowing what our schedule and routine is for the girls and parents has been such a relief. It has been easier to navigate practice without worrying about temperatures and COVID forms; however we are still wearing masks in our district.”