Lady Panther volleyball team dedicating season to teammate

Posted on: August 16, 2016


Updated Sept. 28

The Lady Panthers volleyball team handed undefeated Talawanda their first loss Tuesday, Sept. 27, tying up both teams with a 6-1 record and giving Little Miami a share of the Southwest Ohio Conference lead. 

Both teams have a handful of conference games left before a clear league champion can be declared.


After coming off a second place finish in the Southwest Ohio Conference last season, Little Miami volleyball is hoping to take the next step.

Coach Mason Boulton is entering is 15th season as head coach of varsity volleyball. Boulton is 226-114 overall in his career and said his team plans to better its 2015 SWOC record of 9-3 (15-8 overall) and take the league title.

“[Our goal is to] win the SWOC Championship, have a winning season and pursue daily excellence on and off the court as a team and individuals,” he said.

When his team takes aim at the SWOC title, he will have several returning players who can help him reach this goal.

Four-year varsity player senior Kayla Dozier, the third-ranked server in the league year, will be returning, along with varsity letter winners Karrah Wind, Felicity Walker, Meaghan Owens, Riley Gintert and Ashlyn Williams.

Wind racked up an impressive season last year, ranked the fourth best blocker in the league, and in the top ten in attacks. Owens was also ranked in the top ten in blocks. But it is not just these players who Boulton will call on to win.

“I look for each player to lead on and off the court,” he said. “Each player will need to lead by example by working hard and making the team better in practice. Each player is responsible to help their teammates and the team reach the program goals.”

Boulton said that in preparing for the season, the team has not looked outwardly at SWOC opponents, but has focused on preparing what’s inside.

“Our toughest opponent will be our commitment to excellence and whether or not we become complacent in practice,” he said. “We control our attitude, effort and communication daily. As a team if we pursue excellence daily and remain focused on improving daily we can achieve our team goals.”

Coach Boulton said that, no matter what the outcome at the end of the season, this year will have a very special meaning to his team. The Lady Panthers are dedicating the 2016 season to Marissa Frederick, their teammate who passed away this summer.

“We will honor Marissa by working hard everyday in the gym and by loving each other as she would have loved and encouraged us,” Boulton said. “She loved others unconditionally and always with a smile on her face.  We love and miss you Marissa.”

The Lady Panthers open at home against Clinton-Massie on Aug. 20.

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