The Weber State Women’s Volleyball team is returning to the Swenson Building after their historic 2021 spring season.

The Weber State Wildcats 2020-21 volleyball squad.
The Weber State Wildcats 2020-21 volleyball squad. Photo credit: Weber State Athletics

The Wildcats obtained Weber State’s first ever win in an NCAA volleyball tournament in Omaha, Nebraska, in their spring season. The Wildcats advanced past the first round of the NCAA tournament for the first time in 33 years after beating Bowling Green 3–1. WSU fell to No. 1 Wisconsin in round two of the tournament.

The ‘Cats have 11 returning players, and head coach Jeremiah Larsen also added five new faces to the roster. Some of the tried and true returning Wildcats include Ashlyn Power, Sam Schiess, Dani Nay and Rylin Adams.

For the 2021 spring season, Power received All-Conference First Team honors, Schiess and Nay received All-Conference and All-Tournament Team honors and Adams earned AVCA Pacific North All-Region Honors, All-Tournament team honors in the Big Sky Championship Tournament, Big Sky All-Conference and was dubbed the Big Sky Conference MVP.

One of the five new faces representing the Wildcats includes Baylee Bodily, a freshman middle blocker out of Draper, Utah.

The WIldcat's volleyball team preparing for a mid-August practice in the Swenson Gym.
The WIldcat's volleyball team preparing for a mid-August practice in the Swenson Gym. Photo credit: Weber State Athletics

“Growing up, I always wanted to play college volleyball. That has always been one of my goals,” Bodily said. “I always wanted to stay in Utah. The team’s success drew me to this program, and I wanted to learn as much as I could from Miah Larsen.”

Some of the other new freshmen hail from California: Charli Bouquet is a libero, and Brooklyn Frederick is an outside hitter. Cayton White is also an outside hitter and is joining Weber State from Nevada.

Kess Krutsinger is a Colorado native who transferred to Weber State as a middle blocker from Southern Mississippi.

“I saw coming here as a really good opportunity,” Krutsinger said. “ I couldn’t pass it up. My big thing was to go to school and play some really good volleyball.”

The Big Sky Conference coaches unanimously selected Weber State as first in the coach preseason poll. The Wildcats tallied up 10 first-place votes.

With 10 first-place votes, the Wildcats took 100 points and the Northern Arizona Lumberjacks placed second in the preseason poll with 86 points. Coaches cannot vote for their own squad to be first, and NAU received Weber State’s first-place vote.

Northern Colorado was close behind NAU, tallying 83 points, followed by Montana State, which received 73 points for fourth. Sacramento State came next with 67 points, and Portland State received 50 points. Southern Utah and the University of Idaho tied for seventh with 38 points each. Eastern Washington came in ninth with 36 points, Idaho State received 18 points and the University of Montana received 16 points.

The Wildcats break down the huddle at practice in Swenson Gym.
The Wildcats break down the huddle at practice in Swenson Gym. Photo credit: Weber State Athletics

“We’re just happy to play,” Bodily said. “With all of this going on, we’re just excited to play and we’re super grateful to have games.”

The unofficial kickoff to the season started on Aug. 23 with a team scrimmage dubbed the “Purple & White” scrimmage.

The white team consisted of seniors and returning players, and the purple team consisted of some returning players and freshmen. Throughout the match, players switched teams, but the White team prevailed on top after winning 25–19, 25–15 and 25-12.

Nay led the squad with 19 kills. Emma Mangum had nine kills, and Schiess had eight.

The official start of the Wildcats’ regular season was on Aug. 27, when WSU hosted Seton Hall.

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