The Ell-Saline volleyball team had an historic season in 2012.
The Cardinals advanced to the state volleyball tournament for the first time in program history a year ago. They showed no nerves of a first-time participant, finishing runner-up to Washington County.
This year, three starters and two key reserves return for fourth-year head coach Erica Jensen as they aim to return to state.
“We have five returning varsity players that played at the state tournament last year, and they know what it takes to get there again,” Jensen said. “They gained a great amount of experience by making it to state for the first time in school history.”
Senior starters Aubrey Wilson, Sesely Omli and Paige Johnson return, along with senior Danielle Sprinkle and junior Darby Wikoff.
Jensen said she’s looking for different girls to step in and provide leadership.
“Since we had four seniors graduate from last year’s team, we will be looking for other girls to step in and continue to build on our success of last year,” Jensen said.
While Jensen said the ultimate goal is to return to state, she says those steps are much smaller to start.
“As a coach, I am looking for each girl to get better every day,” Jensen said.