The Lions believe they can compete for another TRL title in 2022.
Let’s be honest.
The West Linn volleyball team — the Lions won the Three Rivers League crown and Class 6A state championship a year ago — lost a ton of talent from its 2021 title team.
Indeed, the Lions graduated five all-TRL picks from last year, including three first-teamers and Player of the Year Emily Warmenhoven (she was later named Class 6A Player of the Year).
But if you think that means the Lions won’t be competitive in 2022, you’ve got another thing coming.
West Linn brings back three key components from last year’s title team and believes that its incoming talent will keep it in the running for another TRL crown this year.
“We plan on being very competitive in the Three Rivers League again this year and plan on being a contender for the title again,” said West Linn coach Emilie Smith.
This year’s version of the Lions will be led by its lone returning all-leaguer — senior outside hitter Addie Hoover (5 feet, 10 inches) was a first-team all-TRL pick a year ago — along with senior outside hitter Amyah Semau (5-10) and junior setter Olivia Doel (5-7).
“Olivia Doel, Amyah Semau and Addie Hoover all played major roles on the team last season to help us win the state title,” Smith said. “They will be huge leaders for the team and set expectations.”
The rest of the Lions’ ‘22 lineup will be comprised by varsity newcomers, but newcomers that Smith believes are ready to compete against the TRL’s best.
That group includes: senior defensive specialist Taylor Bell (5-2); senior outside hitter Olivia Trobetsky (5-10); senior middle Ruby Michelon (5-10); junior middle Jillian Colarchik (5-11); junior middle Alana Ryan (5-10); junior middle/opposite Jade Campean (5-10); junior defensive specialist Caroline Nielsen (5-6); sophomore outside Alexa Cornell (5-9); and sophomore setter Allison Hawk (5-10).
“We have a lot of new faces on the team this year,” Smith said. “It’s exciting and we’re taking one practice at a time getting everyone up to speed.”
As to the coming Three Rivers League race — the Lions host Tigard at 6:30 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 6 in their opener — Smith said she expects Oregon City to be strong, her team to compete and the league to provide a few surprises.
“Oregon City has some strong players coming back this year, and they could be a contender,” Smith said. “But there has been a lot of movement with new coaches across our league. I think anything can happen. We’re just focused on our side right now and going to take one game at a time.”
You can see the preview for the Lakeridge volleyball team here.
You can see the preview for the Lake Oswego volleyball team here.
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