FROSTBURG, Md. -
The Frostburg State volleyball team enters the 2006 season as a young squad with 10 freshman and just two seniors. However, the Bobcats are ready to re-claim their dominance atop the Allegheny Mountain Collegiate Conference after a 17-16 season in 2005.
The Bobcats have held the AMCC title in seven of the nine years that the conference has existed and FSU has been to the NCAA Tournament in five out of the last seven seasons.
This season, Frostburg State will be led by seniors Amanda Hernandez (Crofton, Md./Arundel) and Gaby Archibold (Odenton, Md./Arundel).
Hernandez is the lone returning Bobcat to have received All-AMCC honors in 2005. She finished second in the conference in assists (1,116) and assists per game (9.96). After last year, she ranks fourth all-time in school history for assists in a season. She enters the 2006 season ranked third all-time in FSU history with 2,350 assists.
Archibold recorded 55 kills and 12 service aces last season and she ranked fourth on the team with 46 blocks. She is a hard-working athlete who will provide experience to the Bobcat attack.
Sophomore Caryn Wright (Pikesville, Md./Western Tech) is coming off a very successful freshman campaign where she finished third in the conference with 91 blocks and fifth in the league with a 0.302 hitting percentage. She improved through last spring and enters the season as the team's top middle blocker.
Frostburg State also has six freshman who will be competing for time on the frontline; Brooke Winterling (Glenelg, Md./Glenelg), Chelsea Wassell (Westernport, Md./Southern Garrett), Sara Wolz (Poolesville, Md./Poolesville), Samantha Quirin (Lovettsville, Va./Loudoun County), Leslie Brown (Fort Washington, Md./Bishop McNamara) and Courtney Lancaster (Beltsville, Md./High Point).
Winterling is a powerful player with good range and good competitive volleyball experience.
Wassell is a local product and one of the best athletes on the team. She is a hard worker and should be a big part of the FSU offense.
Wolz has a lot of high school and club experience and will be important to the offense on the right side.
Quirin is a solid attacker and possesses good defensive skills. She will be competing for time at outside hitter.
Brown is a middle hitter and is the one of the highest jumpers on the team.
Lancaster continues to improve and she is a versatile athlete, competing in three sports in high school.
The Frostburg State defense will be led by sophomore Jennifer Wheaton (Ashburn, Va./Stone Bridge). Wheaton enters the season as the starting libero after a solid preseason. She led the team last season with 59 service aces and was fourth with 188 digs.
Returning to the Bobcat defense are junior Sarah Nugent (Cockeysville, Md./Dulaney) and sophomore Kristen Byron (Westminster, Md./Winters Mill).
Nugent is an aggressive server and will see time on the backline this season while Byron has become a more mature player since her freshman season and she is ready to compete for a starting spot.
FSU has three versatile players who have the ability to play anywhere on the floor; Caitlin Nicewarner (Hagerstown, Md./South Hagerstown), Jennifer Stiffler (Elkridge, Md./Long Reach) and Taylor Osborne-Smith (Fort Washington, Md./Bishop McNamara).
The Bobcats will be tested early with three tournaments (Coca Cola Classic, Gettysburg College Battlefield Classic and Maryland Division III State Championships) on the first three weekends of the season. During that stretch, Frostburg State will face Johns Hopkins (24-7), Salisbury (26-10) and Gettysburg (21-13).
The Bobcats enter the 2006 season having been selected to finish second in the AMCC behind reigning champion Penn State Behrend. Penn State Altoona, Mt. Aloysius and Lake Erie round out the top five positions.
For further information on this release, contact:
Office of Sports Information
Frostburg State University
101 Braddock Road
Frostburg, MD 21532-2303