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Waxahachie, Texas- August 19, 2014- The 2014 line-up for the Southwestern Assemblies of God University (SAGU) volleyball Lions will look a lot different from last year’s roster. The lady Lions graduated five seniors from the program. Coach Hank Moore believes loosing key players will be difficult to replace right away, “We lost Taylor Calverley, who was our setter. Taylor was the all-time leading assist getter at SAGU with 4,822 assists. It’s going to be tough to replace that.”

While this year could be the season to rebuild on the offense, it’s likely the young Lion’s strength will be defense. “We smith-smiles-bbLibero Emmalee Smith will be back for her third seasonhave very strong defensive players on the back row. Our libero will be back for her third season, Emmalee Smith. She’s going to be a great player for us. Also, Courtney Tobalka and Katie Ryan, those three girls will carry us defensively, “explains Coach Moore.

Junior JJ Abbott is a three year starter that will be playing a different position this year. As a middle hitter Abbott should have an immediate impact on both offense and defense.

With key losses from last year’s team, it will lead to a very young group. Coach Moore expects significant playing time for two freshman and four sophomores.

Offensively Coach Moore is looking for freshman Mollie McBride and sophomore Faith Hardin to step up as outside hitters, “We should be strong up front as well. We added Mollie McBride and she will have a really good chance to start as a freshman. Faith Hardin is returning for her second season. Those two girls will be our outside hitters.”

coach-hank-moore-in-huddleCoach Moore will be reloading for the 2014 seasonClearly, the Lions will be a young team. For Moore, watching players step up is exciting,“One of the things when you’re looking at loosing that many players is that you start over. Take a whole new identity. I’m excited to see some of these girls that I have known for a long time mature and be leaders on the floor for us.”

 In the Sooner Athletic Conference pre-season poll SAGU was picked to finish fourth. Wayland Baptist, Oklahoma Baptist and Texas Wesleyan are all chosen to finish ahead of SAGU. Wayland Baptist and Oklahoma Baptist were picked as the top 25 in the nation in the Tachikara-NAIA preseason poll. September 15, 2014 the volleyball team will be hosting their first home game, which happens to be their first conference game, when Oklahoma City University comes to town.

Southwestern Assemblies of God University is a private, Christian university located 30 minutes south of the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex in Waxahachie, Texas. The university was established in 1927, and now offers more than 70 associate, bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees on campus or online. More information is available at or by calling 1-888-YES-SAGU.

Contact: Natalie Tristan, SAGU SID, or 214 232 7187