Woodmore volleyball coach Julie Odenweller has one issue to face in every volleyball game, and that is “beating our opponents to 25 points first.”
In her second season overseeing the Wildcat program, she has five returning seniors from last season’s 5-17 (1-13, Suburban Lakes League) team. This is her first head varsity coaching job, but she coached the Washington Local junior team two years and was Whitmer freshman coach four years. In addition, she coached club volleyball for Toledo RAVE four years.
The coach said “our determination to win” will get the Wildcats through the Suburban Lakes League schedule.
“We want to compete and give it our all each time we step onto the court,” Odenweller said.
“I believe we are going to surprise our competition this season,” she continued. “This is a competitive league. There are quite a few new coaches working with a lot of talent. Every match will be tough.”
Returning seniors include Elishia Stone, Tiffany Davenport, Katey Anderson, and Erin Bostic. The lone returning junior is Audrey Thorbahn.
Davenport has already made some plans to attend Owens Community College next year, and academically she already has a start taking classes while still a senior at Woodmore. She hopes to be playing volleyball there, too, next year, Odenweller said.
Stone, a returning honorable mention all-league and all-district selection, returns as a left side hitter, Davenport as defensive specialist.
“They are my power hitters,” Odenweller said.
She also expects Stone and Katey Anderson to the team’s top setters.
“They are very experienced setters. They are really working at mixing it up," Odenweller said.
Key juniors include Thorbahn and Carly Pendleton, both middle front hitters.
“They love to run quick sets and know how to find the holes,” Odenweller said. “Audrey Thorbahn will make some big plays in the front row after having one year of varsity experience from last season. Carly Pendleton has made her way over to us from JV last year. She is playing middle front and working at becoming a key player for us.”
Odenweller takes a stand in her defense, although there is some new talent moving in. Sophomore Andrea Bouldin is new to the libero position, while seniors Bostic and Rachel Utendorf are defensive specialists.
“All three players will not let the ball hit the floor,” the coach said.
There are other players who are fitting into the mix as well, Odenweller said.
“Amanda Wilhardt is a hustler. She is always alert and ready for the ball,” Odenweller said. “Sophomore Mary Makulinski is improving each week in her front row attacks.