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Western Dubuque’s 2019 varsity volleyball team: front from left, Maddy Maahs, Natalie Ulrichs, Teresa Petsche, Ella Schindler, Lexi Clemen and Ava Demmer; second row, Ella Meyer, Sara Horsfield, Claire Horsfield, Hallie Wilgenbusch, Meredith Bahl and Kaylee Hogan; third row, Shelby Olberding, Maci Steffen, Maddie Harris, Kaylee Elgin, Libby Lansing, Meg Besler and Addie Huehnergarth.

Filling holes is nothing new for a coach of a high school sports program. Last year, even though the Western Dubuque volleyball program sported 13 seniors on its varsity roster, the coach was charged with finding the most productive and powerful rotation with only two returning starters.

This year is a similar story for the Bobcats. Gone are all those seasoned and veteran players who are being replaced by a bunch of hungry young Bobcats looking to be together for a long time and make their mark in the Mississippi Valley Conference.

“We are going to be young this year, but we are prepared to take on this challenge. We have some determined players who are ready to compete and show what Western Dubuque Volleyball is all about,” said Megan Scherrman, sixth-year head coach of the Bobcats. “We’re also excited to not be the newbies in the conference anymore. We want to get our name out as a force to be reckoned with in the MVC and are ready for the challenges that this powerful conference brings each year.”

Three returning players who earned playing time last season are Meredith Bahl, a sophomore, along with Kaylee Elgin and Claire Horsfield, both seniors. Bahl played well on the front line last year blasting 71 kills, 28 blocks and had 59 digs. Elgin had 42 kills and 26 blocks.

Young players who are looking to strengthen this program are sophomores Maddi Harris and Madison Maahs, junior Meg Besler and freshman Ella Meyer.

“Yes, we will be young but we have a lot of smart volleyball minds who will be running our court this year,” said Scherrman. “Be sure to keep your eye on Meredith Bahl. She can jump and is ready to take care of the ball and control the court for us.”