EVART – Jayme Maddern has a young team in her first year of coaching Evart volleyball, which is especially why seniors like Saige Nabozny and Lydia Wetters will be counted upon heavily to produce on the court this season.

Nabozny returns from the 2011 season.

“I thought we had a good season, a lot of the girls came back and we had a lot of seniors to work with and had more experience on the varsity,” she said.

“We have some things to work on but it was a good start to the season,” Maddern said.

Nabozny returns as a left-side hitter.

The Evart players had limited off-season volleyball work, Nabozny noted, since Maddern was hired during the summer.

“We pulled everybody together and got a team,” Nabozny said. “We’re very young. It will take awhile for us to get used to playing with each other. As the season goes on, I think we’ll be better.”

Nabozny is looking to improve on her hitting and blocking.

“I’m getting an arch on my back when I hit, that’s something I’m improving on,” she said. “I’m definitely hitting it down and snapping my wrists which is helping a lot. It brings power.”

Wetters is in her second year of volleyball and is a setter this season.

The Wildcats opened the season at Chippewa Hills on Saturday.

“It was great to bond with our teammates,” Wetters said. “We had a really, really tough pool. So I’m not too upset with our losses.”

“We were in a Class A pool and we’re Class C,” Nabozny said.

The key for the team is to work on its passing and serve receive, Wetters indicated.

“We need to talk in general and make sure everybody knows what’s going on and who’s getting the ball,” she said.

Wetters also set last year and said she’s improved in that position.

“I’m a little more accurate and able to get under the ball,” she said. “You need speed and to be willing to go for every ball you can.”

As a senior “I hope to go out on a good note,” Nabozny said.

The Wildcats play in the Highland Conference.

“It’s pretty tough,” Nabozny said. “Normally, we finish third or fourth and sometimes further down the line and we’re hoping we get up there this year. McBain, Beal City and Pine River will be tough. Hopefully we can eliminate our problems and get up to where they are.”

Nabozny and Wetters both play basketball for Evart.