By MICHAEL KINNEY
For The Yukon Review
The Yukon High volleyball team took to the court for the first action of the season Tuesday night. They hosted Edmond Memorial in their season opener.
The Millerettes lost 3-0.
The match was the first varsity action for many members of the Millers.
Memorial is considered one of the top teams in the state, making it to the 6A state semifinals last year.
Yukon graduated 10 seniors from last season and returned only five players from a squad that went 19-10 before losing in the regional round of the state playoffs.
However, that doesn’t mean the cupboard is bare for YHS. According to coach Rachel Allred, they have a few players to keep an eye on this season.
They include hitters Brianna Worth, Addison Wimmer and Rachel Kittell, who are returning starters.
On the defensive side, the experience comes in the duo of Baylie Thiel and Gabbi Mobarak.
“Katie Clark has stepped up as a sophomore into the starting middle blocker position,” Allred said. “Hattie Hughs (senior) and Kashlei Vo (junior) will be setting for varsity this season.”
Despite its inexperience, Allred sees the strength of the team being up front.
“We’ll be a strong hitting team this season,” Allred said. “Our defense is a quick bunch with lots of hustle and heart. As a group, they have a strong desire to succeed and are very competitive.”
As with any inexperienced squad, the Millers have the potential to get better as the season progresses.
“I think they will keep each other accountable as the season progresses, pushing each other to use every practice to help us to reach our goals,” Allred said. “And keeping each other focused on the challenge of winning games in our very competitive conference.”
With six seniors on the Yukon squad, Allred is confident they will have a strong leadership base to build upon.
“I want all of our girls to develop as players, team members and leaders,” Allred said. “My goal is to keep volleyball a fun experience for them, while also pushing them to challenge themselves and each other to do more than expected of them, and get out of their comfort zones. I want my players to be strong mentally and physically, well-rounded young ladies who are ready for life’s challenges, and work hard for success on and off the court.”
The Millers will be back in action this weekend at a tournament in Norman. They travel to Norman North on Tuesday and to Westmoore on Aug. 22.
Varsity matches begin at 6 p.m.