University of Pittsburgh at Johnstown
Pitt-Johnstown Seal

2008 Season Preview

     After a very young Lady Cat volleyball team advanced to the West Virginia Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (WVIAC) Quarterfinals in 2007, Head Coach Linda Renzi (5th season) returns five starters and four seniors to the 2008 squad that will look to improve on last season’s success.
     Coach Renzi will rely on seniors Merissa Larrew (S, Irwin, Pa.), Katie Shadron (DS, Ligonier, Pa.), Kayla Lape (OH, Fishertown, Pa.) and Julie Humble (OH, Punxsutawney, Pa.) to be team leaders.  Larrew averaged 5.32 per game last year, while Shadron paced the team in digs at 3.27 per game. 
     In addition, three other starters are back in the line-up, led-shirt junior middle hitter Kristin Irwin (Bellefonte, Pa.), who averaged 2.2 kills per game.  Junior Abbey Gearhart (OH, Elton, Pa.) finished fourth on the team in kills (1.63 kpg.), and sophomore setter Taylor King (York, Pa.) led the Lady Cats at 5.75 assists per game.
     Coach Renzi will also have experience coming off of the bench.  Lape and junior outside hitters Kelly Miller (Stoystown, Pa.) and Nicole Houser (Clymer, Pa.) combined to average nearly five kills per game a year ago.
     Along with the returning talent, Pitt Johnstown has also added several talented freshmen who should make an impact this season and in the years to come.
The Lady Cats will need to concentrate on quick and explosive offenses to make up for their lack of size   If this year’s team is able to make the adjustments with its experiences learned in 2007, the 2008 campaign could should be another good one for the Lady Cats.