Replacing Herauf not a challenge for Dickinson HighDickinson High head volleyball coach Jay Schobinger has been asked one question more times than he can count. “‘How are you going to replace Jess?’” he said, referring to Jess Herauf, the Midgets’ recently graduated standout who was last season’s Class A senior athlete of the year and a four-year starter. “You don’t replace Jess.”
By: Dustin Monke, The Dickinson Press
Dickinson High head volleyball coach Jay Schobinger has been asked one question more times than he can count.
“‘How are you going to replace Jess?’” he said, referring to Jess Herauf, the Midgets’ recently graduated standout who was last season’s Class A senior athlete of the year and a four-year starter.
“You don’t replace Jess.”
However, Schobinger isn’t worried about his team.
There’s still plenty of talent to go around as the Midgets head into the 2011 season at this week’s East-West Invitational in Bismarck.
As returning all-state outside hitter Madison Deibert said, the Midgets have spread their wings without their longtime captain.
“She was a really great leader,” Deibert said. “But I feel like we all have grown up a lot over the summer so we can take control and get it done.”
Deibert, a 5-foot-8 senior who has started since her sophomore season, is one of the Midgets’ 10 returning letterwinners.
Also back are seniors Leslie Beaudoin, Melissa Sipma and Molly Miller. All three either started or saw extensive playing time as juniors.
“We’ve got a good group of kids. They have the experience,” Schobinger said. “I think the biggest asset for us right now is we have a large chunk of our serve reception coming back.”
Miller and Sipma were both defensive specialists last season, though Sipma will move to outside hitter this season so the Midgets can put seniors Morgan Grosulak and Kelsey Lafond into the back row mix.
Up front, Schobinger will turn to a group of tall, experienced juniors.
Taylor Cooper (5-10) and Rachel Schroeder (5-9) will be at middle hitter while Abby Grove (5-10) will play on the outside.
Junior Ali Moody, the team’s tallest player at 6-foot, will open the season at setter but also has the ability to play as a front-row hitter.
“She understands the game, knows the game and she spreads the ball around well,” Schobinger said.
Beaudoin said while replacing Herauf could have its difficulties, the Midgets feel that they have the ability to do so — simply because of the range of talent they have coming back.
“We don’t have to rely on that one person,” said Beaudoin, a 5-10 middle hitter. “All of our little talents are going to make up for it.”
While the Midgets finished last season as the West Region’s runner-up in both the regular season and region tournament, Schobinger gets a smile across his face talking about the capabilities of this year’s team.
“This group is going to be entertaining to watch,” Schobinger said. “This group takes some pride in defense and not letting the ball hit the floor. It people come out and watch, they’re going to be entertained by this group.”
Dickinson High Midgets volleyball
Head coach: Jay Schobinger
Last season: 24-10, sixth place at Class A state tournament, 2nd place at West Region tournament
Returning starters: Madison Deibert, Sr., OH, 5-8; Leslie Beaudoin, Sr., MH, 5-10; Melissa Sipma, Sr., OH, 5-8; Molly Miller, Sr., DS, 5-5.
Returning letterwinners: Ali Moody, Jr., S, 6-0; Kelsey Lafond, Sr., DS, 5-4; Morgan Grosulak, Sr., DS, 5-6; Rachel Schroeder, Jr., MH, 5-9; Taylor Cooper, Jr., MH, 5-10; Abby Grove, Jr., OH, 5-10.
Losses: Jess Herauf, OH; Kara Froelich, S; Katie Hewson, MH; Tracy Nash, MH.