Volleyball: North reloads for 2013

For several hard-fought seasons, the North High Polars have been on the threshold of the top Classic Suburban Conference volleyball standings.

But the Polars have just been unable to take the final step into the championship role. But that could change this fall.

North is returning experienced players and recent memories of those oh-so-close years could well fuel a North championship.

“We are returning all but one player from last year’s roster,” stated head coach Steve Anderson. “This is a very strong defensive and ball-control group. The team plays well together and has a strong passion for the game. We have a great work ethic, and the girls are determined to improve from last year.” 

The Polars finished with a 12-2 record a year ago, and in his career Anderson — now beginning his seventh season — has posted a record of 102-67.

“This team needs to continue to work on their consistency in order to compete with the top teams in the state. Execution at a high percentage will be stressed,” Anderson posits.

North tri-captains Clara Krenz, Talia Jaskulske and Lette Pfefferle will lead the Polars this season.

Jaskulske is a 5-foot-11 senior outside hitter. The 5-6 Pfefferle is a defensive specialist, while Krenz is a junior 5-6 libero player.

Other Polars who will aid in the North cause this season are senior Ellie Prax (middle blocker); juniors Holly Ellwanger (setter and right-side player); Nevena Vukomanovich (outside hitter); Gabbie Cave (middle blocker); and Abby Rieser (middle blocker).

Additionally, sophomores Ryan Crotty (defensive specialist) and Anna Kemper (right side), along with freshman Megan Rubbelke (right-side setter) add to the North depth.

All are returnees who hope to see valuable action this season.

Back to assist Anderson will be coaches Dave Hobbs, Melissa Hoarn and Abbie Kohlman, along with newly added Stephanie Blanda.

Coach Anderson looked at the CSC and saw no reason not to name Hill-Murray and North-they finished one-two a year ago-as teams others in the conference will have to unseat if they are set on the top echelon.

The Polars opened the season on the road Aug. 26 at Rosemount. They will play Roseville at 7 p.m. at home Aug 29.

The first CSC contest will be against South St. Paul 7 p.m. Sept. 10 at North in the Hal Norgard Gymnasium.

The remainder of the 2013 North volleyball schedule is:
(Games, except for invitationals, are scheduled 7 p.m. starts)
• Aug. 29, Roseville at North.
• Aug. 31, 9 a.m., at Eden Prairie Invitational.
• Sept. 9, Wayzata at North.
• Sept. 10, South St. Paul at North.
• Sept. 12, at Mahtomedi.
• Sept. 17, Henry Sibley at North.
• Sept. 19, at Richfield.
• Sept. 24, at Tartan.
• Sept. 26, Hill-Murray at North.
• Sept. 28, 9 a.m., at Blaine Invitational.
• Oct. 1,  Simley at North.
• Oct. 3, at Henry Sibley.
• Oct. 8, Richfield at North.
• Oct. 9.  Tartan at North.
• Oct. 12, 9 a.m., at Alexandria Invitational.
• Oct 15, at Hill-Murray.

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