2020 Volleyball Season Preview
College of the Ozarks Lady Bobcats volleyball team is anxious to take the court for their 2020 Campaign.
The 2019 NCCAA DI Women’s Volleyball National Champion Lady Bobcats are coming off another exceptional season, where they posted a 24-13 record and their first National title in program history.
The Lady Cats return a trio of seniors this season— Ryley Thixton, Kaylan Smith, and Mattea Reeb. These ladies were valuable contributors to the National Championship team and will be counted on to lead a young group to another strong post season finish.
Thixton, the team leader in kills from a year ago, tallied 467 kills and 445 digs, while Smith was third on the team in kills with 298 to go along with 78 digs and 99 blocks. Reeb, looks to increase her production and help lead the newcomers and continue the winning ways of the Lady Cats. This group of seniors is looking forward to pouring into the younger players, and encouraging them to buy into the championship tradition that took College of the Ozarks Volleyball to front and center on the national stage in 2019.
The sophomore class, will be counted on for maturity and early growth as they contribute from the onset.Led by Abi Menzies, a 6’1 outside hitter, and her solid contributions in 2019, this group will have opportunities for immediate impact. Menzies competed in 36 matches a year ago to contribute 330 kills, 65 digs, and 51 blocks in the championship campaign.Kiley Counts, Leatha Keller, and Lynnae Grus all saw action last year for the Lady Bobcats and look to make valuable contributions in 2020.
Six incoming freshmen were added to the Lady Bobcats 2020 squad. Morgan Austin (Ozark, MO), a 5’10 setter comes from a solid Ozark High School program. Her winning attitude and mentality will be an asset to this year’s squad. Rachael Lindeman (St. Louis, MO) a 5’10 middle hitter/right-side hitter brings a great work ethic and determination to improve and help the team succeed. Emily Aldridge (Marshfield, MO) a 5’10 setter comes from an athletic family and rich tradition of success. She has carried that tradition forward and was a 1st team All-State selection a year ago for Marshfield High School. Mica Chadwell (Strafford, MO) a 5’8 outside hitter/defensive specialist has potential to make an immediate impact. She is extremely competitive and her “Whatever it takes” mentality will be a powerful boost for the Lady Bobcats. Amelia Whatley (Fayetteville, AR) a 6’0 outside hitter/right-side hitter can play any position along the net.Her versatility and high volleyball IQ will provide opportunities to make an immediate impact.Josie Jordan (Spokane) a 5’8 defensive specialist is a hard worker who is very positive and encouraging. Her attitude will help her step into a productive role for the Lady Cats and push her teammates to be their best as well.
Stacy Muckenthaler will enter her seventh season at the helm for the Lady Bobcats. Last season marked Muckenthaler’s first National title and saw her garner 2019 NCCAA DI Women’s Volleyball Coach of the Year honors. Muckenthaler’s career record now stands at 155-77 as her and the Lady Bobcats set their sights on another championship run in 2020.
Coach Muckenthaler states, “Even with the uncertainty of athletics, the student athletes have been working incredibly hard to come out of this season better and more refined than before the pandemic.We know what it’s like to have volleyball taken away, so we have a better appreciation for our sport and will not take it for granted.Whenever it is safe to resume, we will be ready to hit the ground running and hopefully add another banner to Keeter Gym.I’m really excited about the new faces we have added to our roster and I can’t wait to see what can be accomplished when they are paired with our upperclassmen.
The Lady Bobcats are anxious to get back in action as soon as possible.Check back often for updates and information regarding schedules and events.We hope to see you in the stands soon at the Keeter Athletic Complex as we cheer on our Lady Bobcats to another championship season in 2020.