After a short turnaround from the 2020-21 season, the volleyball team welcomes a new season at the Teague Special Events Center this fall.
This coming season will serve as a return to normalcy as last season was shortened and moved to the spring due to COVID-19 restrictions. Though this will be a relatively normal season, this season will also be the Wildcats first season in the Western Athletic Conference.
While being in the new conference, the WAC will feature a mixture of new and old opponents, as three other universities have also joined the WAC from the Southland Conference.
“I think it will be nice because we’ll know what to expect, but then we’ll get the excitement of playing people we have never played before,” said senior outside and right-side hitter from New Braunfels, Lindsey Toney.
This season’s schedule will also feature matches against schools such as Texas Tech on Aug. 31 and Oklahoma on Sept. 5. These schools will add to a competitive and diverse schedule of both conference and non-conference opponents.
Last season, the Wildcats went 7-8 and were able to clinch a conference tournament but fell to Central Arkansas in the first round. With a mixture of returning and incoming players, the team hopes to build on the foundations built last season for the near future.
“You could see that stepping into the gym on day one that there was already a lot of flow that was really smooth, and they were playing next to each other whether it was a newcomer or a returning player,” said head coach Angela Mooney. “There was just a lot of trust already built and just a lot of people already knowing what systems we wanted to run.”
This year the team will feature six returning upperclassmen along with 12 underclassmen and transfer players. The returning underclassmen include players such as sophomore middle blocker Braden Bossier, who led the team in total blocks last season.
“I think our upperclassmen did a great job during the summer of teaching our underclassmen and transfers our systems in the gym,” said Mooney. “So, it was really easy to step in and add as coaches and divide and explain things a little bit in more detail, but everyone had a good understanding of what our program looks like in the gym.”
The Wildcats will begin the season at home, Aug. 27 at 6 p.m. versus the UT-Arlington Mavericks.