News Photo
Volleyball - Thu, Aug. 24, 2017

The Viking volleyball team opens the 2017 season this weekend with four matches at the Northwestern College Tournament in Orange City, Iowa. Friday's opener is the first official contest of the season for any VCSU athletic teams.

The Vikings will be put to the test early as three of their four opponents are ranked in the NAIA Preseason Top 25 Poll, including No. 2-ranked Dordt College. The Vikings open the season Friday at 2:30 p.m. against No. 15 Doane University and then face the tournament host, No. 13 Northwestern College, at 8:30 p.m. On Saturday, VCSU plays Dakota Wesleyan at 11 a.m. and No. 2 Dordt College at 3 p.m.

All four matches during the tournament will have live stats, and both of Friday's matches will have a live video stream.

Live Stats  |  Live Video

Viking coach Adam Longmore is entering his fourth season as head coach and features a near even mix of returning players and new faces on his roster.

Leading the nine returners is junior middle Clarissa Olson, who was named 1st Team All Conference and Honorable Mention All Region after her sophomore campaign. She's part of a talented frontline returning for the Vikings that also includes hitters Taylor Sharp (sophomore), Megan Johnson (senior) and Autumn Johnson (junior).

Junior hitter Polette Medina redshirted last season after suffering a knee injury and is expected to make an instant impact on the court this season. The Viking lineup will feature a pair of new setters this season. Rowan Garcia comes in as a freshman while junior Leah Ruter switched to setter this season. Junior Hailie Wilds is back as well as a versatile player who can hit and play top-notch defense. The Vikings also return a pair of strong defensive sophomores in Charlotte Huschka and Mikayla Mellem.

Longmore and assistant coach Steve Rindfleisch recruited hard to add eight freshman to the roster this season, putting the team at 17 players total.

Following this weekend's opener, the Vikings will travel to Northfield, Minn., for four matches Sept. 1-2 at the St. Olaf Tournament. VCSU's home opener is set for Sept. 6 against Concordia-Moorhead.

The Vikings open conference play Sept. 16 at Presentation College. VCSU is projected to finish fourth in the North Star Athletic Association, according to the Preseason Coaches' Poll.