Volleyball Preview: Kennett adopts three-setter offense

Tuesday, August 8, 2017
Photo by Dustin Ward, staff
Pictured is the Kennett high school volleyball team. Pictured front row left to right are: Kaytie Bradley, Olivia Daniels, Emillie Johnson, Melena Green, Camryn Essary, Claira Green, Morgan Cook and Mallory Morrow; pictured back row left to right: Tyneshia Wilson, McKenzie Putman, Antonia Randle, Eliza Raspberry, Camille Thomas, Bre Parrent, Makaya Jones and Maddy Nigut.

The Kennett Indians volleyball program enters the 2017 season looking to implement a new rotation.

Kennett head coach Veronica Gardner plans on utilizing a 6-3 rotation with three setters at the varsity level. Gardner said freshman Melena Green, junior Claira Green and senior Camille Thomas will handle the setting responsibilities in the new formation.

“All three of them handle the ball well, which has really helped us out with our passing and defense,” Gardner said. “Adding a third person on the floor with great ball control has greatly improved our game. I think our defense is our biggest area of improvement. Hopefully, our passing on serve receive and adding a third setter on the floor will be bigs advantages for this team.”

Gardner has the luxury of having a veteran squad to adapt to the new rotation. Kennett returns five starters - senior Tyneshia Wilson, senior Makaya Jones, senior Camryn Essary, senior McKenzie Putman and junior Claira Green - off of last season’s varsity squad that finished 12-16-1.

“We only graduated two seniors last year,” Gardner said. “So we have a good core of our team coming back with a year or two of varsity experience.”

Kennett’s complete high school roster consists of five seniors, two juniors, seven sophomores and two freshmen.

“Our numbers are a little bit down this year, but with the girls we have we feel like less is more,” Gardner said. “We are pretty happy with the girls we have here. Many of them have a great deal of experience playing volleyball. It’s nice to have a group that knows what to expect.”

Gardner said conditioning has been been a focal point of August practices.

“We’ve been working hard to make sure the girls are in the best shape possible,” Gardner said. “We will be well-conditioned. Hopefully, outlasting teams in long rallies won’t be an issue for us because we are not going to get tired.”

The Indians are slated to open its season Aug. 21 when they host Oran.

“Usually, they have a good squad,” Gardner said. “I think we went three games with them last season. I expect our girls to come out and give them a good game this year. We will see when we get there how it turns out.”

Kennett is slated to compete in Class 3, District 1 with NMCC, Dexter, Doniphan, Fredericktown, North Dame and Perryville at the end of the season.

“I think our district is one of the most difficult in the entire state,” Gardner said. “Perryville, Notre Dame and Dexter always have good teams and NMCC gives everyone a run for their money. There is always good competition every season and it’s always a tossup who will come out of that district.”

See Kennett’s schedule below.

Kennett High School Volleyball Schedule

8/26Malden JV Trn.Home
8/28Dyer CountyAway
8/29South PemiscotHome
9/5Scott CityAway
9/8-9Dig for Life Cape Girardeau
9/14Poplar BluffHome
9/23I-55 JV ClassicScott City
9/28Cape CentralHome
10/5Twin RiversHome
10/10-12SEMO Tourn.TBA
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