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Volleyball Begins New Era Under Letourneau

FROSTBURG, Md. -The Frostburg State volleyball program begins a new era in 2005 under first-year Head Coach Peter Letourneau. Letourneau, the top assistant at Rutgers in 2004, takes over a program that won 30 or more matches in each of the last two seasons and advanced to the NCAA Tournament in each of the last three.

Letourneau is no stranger to the state of Maryland, having graduated from Townson and having served as head coach of the men’s and women’ volleyball programs at Villa Julie. He will have his work cut out for him in finding replacements for a majority of last year’s team. FSU lost four first-team All-Allegheny Mountain Collegiate Conference performers in Lauren Petrick, Jodi Carpenter, Carrie Ness and Sam Seyfferth. FSU also lost Tara Emerick, Kelly May and Lori Potts.

The Bobcats are young and inexperienced and will look for their three returners, senior captains Kristie Butt (Germantown, Md./Seneca Valley) and Carly McDonald (Owings, Md./Northern) and junior Amanda Hernandez (Crofton, Md./Arundel), to carry them to their fourth-straight AMCC championship.

Butt, the lone returning defensive specialist, recorded 110 digs and 10 service aces in 72 games last year.

McDonald, an outside hitter, earned All-AMCC honorable mention honors in 2004 after leading the FSU with 51 service aces. She finished second on the team with 365 digs and was third with 263 kills. She also had 38 blocks and 25 assists.

Hernandez, a setter, finished second in the league with 841 assists. She was fifth on the team with 268 digs and 22 service aces, and she also added 23 blocks.

Sophomore Lauren Weller (Gaithersburg, Md./Gaithersburg) returns to the FSU volleyball program after missing the 2004 season with an illness. In 2003, she smashed 113 kills in 77 games while posting a .310 hitting percentage.

The Bobcats will utilize eight newcomers this season – two transfers and six freshmen.

Junior Amanda Frantz (Friendsville, Md./Northern Garrett) and sophomore Gaby Archibold (Odenton, Md./Arundel) are transfers with collegiate volleyball experience and should earn valuable playing time.

Frantz, a transfer from Garrett College, is a versatile player and an efficient attacker. At Garrett, she earned Region XX honorable mention and second-team All-Maryland JUCO honors.

Archibold, a transfer from Anne Arundel Community College, is a very coachable player with excellent jumping ability. She worked hard on her game in the spring and should compete for playing time.

Freshmen joining the squad are Kristen Byron (Westminster, Md./Winters Mill), Meg McDearmon (Owings Mills, Md./Franklin), Sarah Nugent (Baltimore, Md./Dulaney), Kate Plume (Hagerstown, Md./North Hagerstown), Jenny Wheaton (Ashburn, Va./Stone Bridge) and Caryn Wright (Pikesville, Md./Western Tech).

Byron, a setter/defensive specialist, handles the ball well and is learning the offensive strategies at the collegiate level.

McDearmon, an outside hitter, has good club experience and brings a high knowledge of the game to Frostburg State. She has proven to be a good hitter and should see floor time this season.

Nugent, a defensive specialist, loves the game and is the most dedicated player on the team. She is very personable and her great social skills allow her to connect with everyone on the squad.

Plume, another defensive specialist, is one of the best athletes on the team. She is an explosive leaper and has an aggresive personality on the floor. She is very fast and physical and will contribute during the season.

Wheaton, a setter/defensive specialist, has a lot of experience playing club ball at a high level. She is the best ball control player of the newcomers and she offers a lot of options with her versatility.

Wright, a middle blocker, worked hard in the preseason to learn the flow of the game. She has good athletic ability and will compete for playing time.

As usual, the Bobcats will face a tough schedule featuring 2005 NCAA Tournament participants Gettysburg (28-6), Eastern (30-7) and Salisbury (25-12). FSU will also meet Mid-Atlantic regional opponents Elizabethtown (24-9), Johns Hopkins (18-10) and Susquehanna (21-22) during the regular season.

Having won three straight AMCC crowns, Frostburg State is once again selected as preseason favorites according to a vote taken by league coaches. Penn State Behrend, Penn State Altoona and Mount Aloysius round out the top four spots.

For further information on this release, contact:

Office of Sports Information
Frostburg State University
101 Braddock Road
Frostburg, MD  21532-2303

Telephone: 301-687-4371
Fax: 301-687-4780