Maryville volleyball used the rest from its first-round bye in the Class 3 District 16 Tournament to beat Cameron 3-1 Oct. 27 in Cameron, Missouri.
The Spoofhounds came into the week with high hopes of growing in every aspect of the game. The team has focused on building around its seniors and expertise of second-year coach Miranda Mizera.
Mizera has posted a 43-10-1 record since taking the helm at Maryville. She is a graduate of Northwest, and the girls on the team feed off the expertise she’s brought to the program.
“Coach Mizera has taught us a lot as a team and really gets to focus on our side of the net and support one another,” senior Macy Loe said, a setter for the Spoofhounds.
Maryville finished the regular season as back-to-back MEC champions, including an unblemished eight-game schedule in the conference. Some key players to look out for in the postseason are seniors outside hitter Serena Sundell, Loe and libero Klarysa Stolte.
All three seniors have had key roles in the team’s success, with Sundell leading the team in kills (301). Loe is the main player at the net setting up these shots for Sundell, with Stolte in the back court leading the defensive efforts.
The ’Hounds took advantage of previously facing Cameron, being able to know what to expect from the Dragons.
“We had an advantage in receiving the first seed,” Stolte said. “We have played and beat all the teams in our district before, so hopefully we’re able to run with the same momentum we have this whole season.”
The ’Hounds built off their offense led by Sundell and only allowed for Cameron to win one set. Maryville was able to seal its first victory of the postseason in the fourth set.
“Having the bye is nice because we are able to do things we may not have during the regular season,” Mizera said. “We did not scout much at all, so this is a good learning opportunity for the girls to be able to scout teams.”
The Spoofhounds feel this year’s team is one that could bring back a championship to Maryville. The whole team has been around each other since their youth. The players learned from each other, but they feel that Mizera has brought a strong culture to the program.
“She trusts in our team more than we do ourselves, and she sees all the potential we have for the postseason,” Stolte said. “She has put pressure on us by matching us up against some Class 5 and Class 4 schools, but that’s because she trusted our abilities and we always seemed to do our job right against those tough teams.”
The Spoofhounds are set to face Savannah Oct. 29 in the Class 3 District 16 Championship in Cameron, Missouri.