Muhlenberg College

Allentown, Pa.
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Thursday, August 28, 2003
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The Muhlenberg volleyball team isn’t exactly starting from scratch, but it will have plenty of new faces when it takes to the court for the
Julie Lauro
Lauro recorded 446 kills – the second-highest single-season total in program history – as a freshman in 2002.
2003 season tomorrow at Moravian’s Greyhound Premiere Invitational.

The Mules graduated an outstanding senior class last year — a group of five players whose names are all over the record books and who led the program to 71 wins in four seasons and a 2001 Centennial Conference regular-season co-championship.

What remains is a team that consists of four sophomores and six freshmen. With no juniors or seniors on the roster, the Mules will have rely on their youth to improve on last year’s 14-21 record.

The “veterans” of the team – the four sophomores – provide a good core around which to build. All-region selection Julie Lauro is one of the top returning hitters in the CC, and Muhlenberg also returns two setters (Mary Henning and Emily Reardon) and a defensive specialist (Jen Weist).

“I feel like everyone is on the same level because we’re all learning together,” said Weist. “We’re going to use [the lack of experience] to our advantage and not necessarily concentrate on winning, but on preparing for future years.”

In spite of their extreme inexperience, the Mules received one first-place vote in the CC preseason poll, finishing fifth. Gettysburg was picked to repeat as CC champion.

“Everyone wants to be in the top four and make it to the CC playoffs,” noted Weist. “But right now we’re just working one step at a time to get there.

“There’s a lot of potential. All the new girls are really talented, and everyone has been working very hard. We just have to get accustomed to playing together,” she added.

The volleyball program has a strong history of first-year players making an immediate impact, and the talented incoming class is expected to continue that tradition as the Mules build back up to championship level.

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Last updated August 28, 2003