by Alex Wagner
Walla Walla University Women’s Volleyball has released their 2014 schedule. In their final season participating as an NAIA Independent, the team will host seven home matches, and participate in two tournaments. The Wolves will open the season beginning on Thursday, Aug. 21 with the “Sports Travel Northwest Invitational” in Spokane Valley. The tournament features six matches against teams from the Cascade Collegiate, and Frontier Conferences, including Lewis-Clark State College, Westminster, and Montana State Northern.
On August 29 at 5 pm the Wolves will travel across town to take on Whitman College at the Sherwood Athletic Center on the Whitman campus. Other highlights include matches against future fellow Cascade Conference opponents Eastern Oregon, Evergreen State, and Multnomah University, and two matches against WWU’s sister institution to the south, Pacific Union College.
(See Full Schedule)
2014 will be a transitional year for the Wolves, as they prepare to join the Cascade Collegiate Conference in 2015. Don Hepker has returned to coach the team, and will also be serving as WWU’s Sports Information Director. Coach Hepker will be starting with nearly a clean slate, as the Wolves return only four athletes from last season. The team will be relying on the experience of Amanda Preston (Sr), and three sophomores, Melissa Barton, Alissa Casey, and Maria Darling. The size provided by Emily Allen (Jr), and Anika Jacobsson (So), both middle hitters, will be missed this season. Both players are taking the year off to study in the “Adventist Colleges Abroad” language program. However, eight incoming freshmen will be vying for prominent roles as WWU Volleyball builds for a bright future.