Edinboro Volleyball searching for return to postseason playoff spot

Tyler Trumbauer
Sports Editor/Spectator

The Edinboro Fighting Scots women’s volleyball team went 18-18 overall in their 2013 campaign. That .500 record means the ladies can either go up or go down from here.

10th year head coach Missy Soboleski believes they will be ascending this season.

“Last year was a growing year for us,” Soboleski said during a practice last week at McComb Fieldhouse. “We return every starter this year. We have had our struggles, but we are improving and we hope to do the same this year.”

Not only is Soboleski blessed with having her starters junior Megan Branchik, senior Haley Marett, senior Tabitha Meeks, junior Katie Felix, junior Marah Mayock, junior Maria Concheck and sophomore Latoya Hutchinson, she also has a strong freshman class of recruits.

“Sydney ‘Squid’ Trathen is at the setting position. She is just an excellent athlete,” Soboleski stated. “She has speed, jumping ability and adds quickness to our offense. Also, Chalen [Litwiler] is also really doing a great job in the preseason. She is putting up some good numbers for us thus far.”

Soboleski, who also has coached at Gannon and Mercyhurst in her career, believes thathergirlsaregoingtohave confidence coming in to this season, however she pinpointed ball control in transition and blocking as areas that need to be improved if they want to reach their potential.

Edinboro qualified for the playoffs for five straight seasons from 2006 through 2011, but failed to qualify the last two years.

Returning to postseason play is a big goal this season. “It is my senior year and I want to get back there,” Marett said. “I think this year we can do it. The last two years we have had rebuilding. This year everyone is back and I think we are ready for the playoffs.”

The rest of the coaches in the Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference don’t have much stock in Edinboro as the Fighting Scots were picked sixth in the Western Division in the preseason coaches’ poll.

Regardless of the poll, Soboleski just wants the girls to give it their all and the rest will take care of itself.

“I want them to give everything they got and not have any regrets. You are going to win them and you are going to lose them, but you have to be able to say that you did your best, regardless.”

The Fighting Scots start it off with the Tony Banner Memorial Tournament at Clarion University on September 5 and 6.

After facing Charleston (WV), West Virginia State, West Liberty and Notre Dame (OH) on September 12 and 13 in Erie, they return home on September 16 to host Notre Dame (OH) at McComb Fieldhouse.

They host Pitt Johnstown, who is the top ranked team in the Eastern Division, on October 11 and cap of their regular season on November 8 at Clarion.

Tyler Trumbauer is the sports editor for The Spectator. He can be reached at sports.spectator@gmail.com.