Wauseon head volleyball coach Kelsey Wulf is walking into the perfect situation as she takes over for Bill Blanchong who stepped down following last season’s run to the Division II regional.
Coincidentally, she also took over for him at Evergreen several years earlier, where she remained through the 2017 season.
The Indians were 20-6 overall in 2018 and 6-1 in the Northwest Ohio Athletic League, making them co-league champs with Evergreen. They won a district title before ultimately falling to Willard in a regional semifinal.
“With seven people returning off of a very successful season, I’m looking to compete with everyone we play,” said the first-year Wauseon coach.
However, the Indians will have to make due minus a pair of all-league performers. They will have to replace Lexi Sauber, who was first team All-NWOAL, first team District 7 and second team All-Ohio, earning her a scholarship at Bowling Green State University where she is on the roster for the upcoming season. Also gone is Maddie Trejo who was first team All-NWOAL and District 7, as well as Tamera Smith.
Communication and making sure the offense runs smoothly are potential weaknesses for the season.
The transition from Blanchong to Wulf should be a smooth one with so many athletes returning. Among those returning are four who received postseason honors. They are Sydney Zirkle (honorable mention All-NWOAL), Kelcy Blanchong (second team All-NWOAL, District 7), Skylar Reckner (honorable mention All-NWOAL, District 7) and Chelsie Raabe (honorable mention All-NWOAL).
Also returning for the Indians are Harlee Floss, Delanie Roush and Cameron Estep. Newcomers to look out for are Marisa Seiler, Aaliyah Glover and Drue Roush.
“Seven returning lettermen equals lots of experience, especially defensively,” said Wulf on a strength of her team. She also lists them being competitive, having quality senior leadership, and a variety of offensive threats as other team strengths.
To repeat as league champions, the Indians can’t afford to take a night off.
“As usual, the NWOAL will be very competitive with many teams fighting for the top spot,” explained Wulf. “Anything can happen on any given night and because we only play each other once we have to be on our game every night.”
Wauseon is at Maumee this Saturday at 12:15 p.m. to begin the season.
Reach Max Householder at 419-335-2010