GALION — It’s been a summer of adjustment for the Galion High School volleyball team and new head coach Kathleen Scott.
“It’s been a lot of fun,” said Scott, whose coaching career spans 15 years. She was head varsity coach at Sugarcreek Garaway in 2017 and spent the past three seasons as a varsity assistant coach at Cardington-Lincoln. “I saw some of (the Galion players) during the club season at MOVA (Mid Ohio Volleyball Academy) and I coached three of them on my team. I had an idea of who was here, so it’s made the transition a little bit easier. They are so much fun and they love to have fun and love to laugh. They smile all the time and they enjoy the game.”
Scott said 11 of the 24 players in the Galion program this season are freshmen.
“We pretty excited to have that number,” Scott said. “We don’t have a lot of upper classmen in the program right now. The class numbers are pretty small. We only have four seniors. Those freshmen are kind of stepping in as that big class right now. A lot of the freshmen have been really motivated to get better and they see the challenge. A lot of them have made the adjustments very quickly and they’re very coachable and we really have high hopes for them in the upcoming seasons.”
The Tigers, winners of four consecutive Mid Ohio Athletic Conference championships, lost five seniors to graduation including All-Ohio honorees Kayla Hardy and Samantha Comer, All-District performer Jaden Ivy, along with Kiera Pigg and Keely Knight.
Scott said this year’s senior class features returning players Ady Monk, Kalyn Carroll, Dani Felder, and Emma Jutz. That group and the other upper classmen are taking their roles as leaders seriously, Scott said.
“A lot of our upper classmen have taken on those leader-captain roles,” Scott said. “The upper classmen get along very well, on and off the court. They’re all excited to play with each other and they like to help each other out. They’re not afraid to tell each other what to do to help the game. It’s really working really well.”
Sophomore Ashley Dyer earned All-MOAC recognition last season as a freshman. Scott said she has taken on a mantle of leadership this summer.
“She’s a returning starter and has really stepped into a leadership role,” Scott said. “A lot of the freshmen look to her and she’s been a visible leader for us by example more than anything.”
Galion will play four scrimmages prior to opening the regular season with a home match against Bellevue on Tuesday, Aug. 24. Tigers’ fans can get a preseason look at the volleyball squad when Galion hosts a multi-team scrimmage featuring Northmor, Kenton, and Plymouth on Wednesday, Aug. 18. Matches begin at 5 p.m.