Joining Stralow at setter are juniors Brooke Ryan and Liz Green. The Fillies run a modified two-setter offense, with Ryan coming in for Stralow in the back row.
“Ryan is very good about keeping the hitters aggressive,” Medenblik said. “Green can hit out of the front row, so she’s very versatile about setting and hitting.”
Aggression is something the Fillies have struggled with. Medenblik said that in tight games, the Morrison hitters have trended more toward playing points safely for fear of losing games. Like the growing pains, that’s something the coach believes the team will work through as the season rolls along.
“Sometimes they want to play safe,” she said. “You see teams on the 24th point not hit the ball hard. I want them to go out, be aggressive and see that they can succeed.”
Rounding out the lineup (a bevy of them juniors) are outside Payton Kennedy – who played varsity as a sophomore – middle Adrienne Banks and libero Alyssa Canales. Morrison’s roster is loaded with talented and consistent players who are just waiting to click.
But one good surprise thus far for Medenblik has been watching her defense when it’s on top of it’s game.
“Usually we’re outsized,” she said. “But they executed their defense very well, picked up everything. If the ball’s going to the corner of the gym, they ran to the corner.
“It’s a credit to every girl on the floor. Those nights that they’ve played together they’ve done very well. That’s when I’ve seen them get over that (cohesive) hurdle.”
The Fillies. next match is a road trip to Amboy on Thursday. Medenblik said she didn’t like to prognosticate outcomes – she’s “superstitious.” Instead, she elaborated on her team’s game-by-game goals.
“One thing I’ve told my girls is they can look at any rotation we have and put it to any hitter they want,” Medenblik said. “The hitting has been very even. There’s not been one hitter that outshines the other.
“I have been waiting for these girls to be together with this senior that we have. I’ve been looking forward to this season for a long time.”