A senior-laden lineup has spirits high around the Sheridan volleyball program.
Seniors Bailey Lotozo (outside hitter) and Alli George (setter-outside hitter) — first-team district selections and All-Muskingum Valley League players — headline a veteran Generals team which was 13-8 and sectional champions in 2012.
Seniors Brittany Meadows (the team’s best server), Tiffany Myers (the leading blocker), Cari Koehler and Caleigh Crandell and sophomores Morgan Householder and Donna Swinehart also return for fourth-year coach Holly Culver.
Three juniors –Tessa Fry, Kaitlyn Cooke and Emma Huddleston — and freshmen Adelyn Smith and Maddy Trowbridge all join the varsity team.
Having that experience is why Culver said the team chose the motto ‘Make It Count.’
“These girls have worked tremendously hard and want to make everything that they do count,” she said. “All of the girls are amazing friends and support one another like I’ve never seen, and that will be a very important detail this season. The seniors have been an integral part of this team and have been great leaders. We’re looking forward to competing this season.”
Laura Thompkins, who enters her second season, will lean on upperclassmen as the Lady Devils hope to improve on a 4-19 record.
Seniors Jordanna Seiler (setter) and Maddie Bunting (libero) highlight the returning letterwinners. Outside hitters Kailee Wayne, Domonique Bonner and Vanessa Wooten and middle hitter Rexzina Rivers — all juniors — and sophomores Devyn Bonner (middle hitter) and Meagan Ulbrich (setter) are back.
Junior middle hitter McKenna Brock and sophomore defensive specialist Akira Leasure are newcomers to the team.
Thompkins expects Dover, New Philadelphia and Marietta to compete for the East Central Ohio League-Scarlet Divison title as Zanesville continues to improve.
“The team has worked hard in the offseason,” Thompkins said. “We are young and moving in the right direction.”
Cross country West Muskingum
The girls will be the strength for the Tornadoes as three-time All-Ohioan and senior Lauren Paul is back to lead the way for sixth-year coach Renee Ware.
In 2012, Paul helped the West Muskingum girls finish second in the MVL. She will be aided by her sister, Madison Paul, and fellow sophomores Kenzie Hill, Chloe Williams, Thaina Gatti and Shelby Hewitt.
Freshmen Kaycie Schluessler and Josey Durant highlight the newcomers for the girls.
The boys graduated four-year letterman Shawn Dosch. Junior Ryan Burkhart headlines the boys team.
“We have a young team this year with the potential to do well,” Ware said. “I look forward to watching the younger runners grow throughout the season as they become more experienced and knowledgeable. I think the MVL will be very competitive, and there are a few teams in both the boys and girls who can compete for the league title.”