Scots end historic season as conference champions

The Scots girls’ volleyball team has set a new precedent for the program. They finished the 2019 season with a 27-7 (14-0) record, an NCAA tournament appearance, 6 All-Conference selections, and the USA South Conference championship.

            The Scots sported an 8-6 record early in the year before exploding into a 19-game win streak. The pre-conference schedule was tough, but the team ultimately used those games to prepare themselves for grueling conference play.

             “We started off the season stronger than we ever have in my four years here at MC,” said senior Brianne Sidner. “We were able to play at a high caliber from the first day, and even though we did not see consistent winning early on, we saw more chemistry and potential than ever before.”

            The Scots faced off against the Averett University Cougars in the championship game. They fell behind 0-1 before taking the final three sets and claiming the championship by a score of 3-1. It was Maryville College’s third volleyball title in program history and the first one since the 2014 season.

The Volleyball team is all smiles after winning the USA South conference championship.

Photo courtesy of Maryville College Communications

            “When that last ball hit the ground, I felt a wave of relief,” said sophomore Meredith Bonee. “We had worked so hard for that moment, and it felt so good to finally be able to call ourselves conference champs.”

            The regular season accolades did not stop there though. In her 34th season at the helm, head coach Kandis Schram was named the 2019 USA South Coach of the Year. Senior Dejane Hester-Taylor and junior Maggie Mathews joined Bonee as 1st team All-Conference selections. Sidner was a 2nd team All-Conference selection.

Hester-Taylor ended the season ranked 14th nationally with a .388 hitting percentage. She also deposited 214 kills. Mathews led Maryville with 2.90 kills/set—throwing down 255 kills in 88 sets played. Bonee finished with six triple-double performances on the season—good for seventh in the nation.

Sidner, the USA South Tournament MVP, led Maryville with 267 total kills. Sidner also ended her career by reaching the milestone of 1,000 kills. Senior Sadiee McDaniel surpassed the 2,000 career assist mark this season.

            For the first round of the NCAA tournament, the Scots traveled to Atlanta, Ga. to face the ninth ranked Berry College Vikings. The Scots lost 3-0. The teams played to a 25-15, 25-19, 25-13 final. Hester-Taylor had six kills and hit .250. Bonee ended up with 13 assists, eight digs and five kills, while Sidner added five kills of her own. Freshman Natalie Watts finished with 10 digs. Mathews and Bonee each added eight defensive stops.

“By getting to the NCAA tournament and winning conference, we are propelling this program forward,” Sidner said. “I’m honored to say this season we did something really special.”

The 7 seniors (Top: Dejane Hester-Taylor, Kelly Wandell, Brianne Sidner, Madison Wilkerson. Bottom: MacKenzie Macrum, Saidee McDaniel, Allison Botts) end their careers as champions.

Photo courtesy of Maryville College Communications

            Coach Schram constantly preaches to her team that they are not only playing for themselves, but they are playing for those who wore the jersey before and the ones who will wear it after. When each team steps on the court, they create history.

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