CONCORDIA, Kansas — Back in December, when Deb Monzon reassumed the reigns of the Cloud County Community College volleyball program, she and assistant coach Kayla Garst went right to work replenishing a T-Birds' roster that was set to graduate seven players off the 2017-18 squad.
With a clear goal in mind, Monzon said she believes the T-Birds put together a 2018 recruiting class that should complement Cloud County's returners and be impact players when the season gets underway in August.
"Probably what we lacked were middle hitters, and that was kind of our focus in the recruiting class, because we really didn't have any returners with much experience at those positions," Monzon said. "I think this class here is going to mesh well with the girls we have coming back because it's what we were missing or had graduate last season, position wise."
Cloud County signed a total of eight student-athletes, five of whom have the skillset to see time at the middle hitter position.
The class also features six Kansas players, including two names fans should recognize in Concordia natives Jess Williams and Laken Schroeder.
The New Thunderbirds
5'5 | Libero | Plainville, KS.
Monzon: "She's an excellent passer and we're going to depend on her a lot in our serve receive as well as on our defense. We saw really good things out of her at our North Central Kansas All-Star game and we're expecting a lot from her."
5'11 | MH/OH | Stockton, KS.
Monzon: "We initially were looking at her as a middle hitter, but we're probably going to use her more on the outside initially. She's a long armed, tall and lean athlete with a lot of potential."
5'10 | MH| Linn, KS.
Monzon: "I saw her play a few years ago when she was a freshman or sophomore and was really impressed with her then. She can jump out of the gym and was one heck of a high jumper in high school. She'll probably lead us in blocking and she can hit the ball hard, has a nice swing and heavy hand. Her biggest adjustment will be getting use to the quicker game at the collegiate level."
5'9 | RS | Greensburg, KS.
Monzon: "She's a lefty and a pretty good athlete with a lot of potential. I like her being a lefty, gives a different spin. She's capable of doing a lot of good things for us."
5'8 | OH/MH | Concordia, KS.
Monzon: "With her jumping ability and experience, we're probably going to use her as a middle hitter. Even though she's only 5'8 she can play middle because of her jumping ability. We see her stepping in and helping right away."
5'7 | Setter | Concordia, KS.
Monzon: "She does a tremendous job, knows the game and has played on some good club teams. With her experience, I expect her to come in and play right away and help run the show."
6'2 | MH | Cartagena, Colombia
Monzon: "From what we've seen from video, she has middle blocking skills and has great footwork. She reads well, can hit the ball well and has a really long wingspan."
6'0 | OH | Cartagena, Colombia
Monzon: "She is an extremely good jumper, good passer and a six-rotation player all around the court. She can get up and hit. I think she is someone we should be able to use and keep in the game all around the floor."