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Saturday, April 20
The Indiana Daily Student

sports volleyball

Dunbar recruits top talent for next year

7 new players to join fall squad

IU's Ashley Benson spikes the ball during a win over Ohio State during Hoosier Hysteria on Friday at Assembly Hall.

The IU volleyball team has improved leaps and bounds during coach Sherry Dunbar’s two-year tenure.

Before Dunbar arrived at IU, the team had five combined Big Ten wins from 2004-2006. Since she took the job, the team improved to six Big Ten wins in 2007 and nine Big Ten wins in 2008.  

Some of the improvement stems from the athletes she has recruited to play for the

Next fall will be no exception when IU welcomes seven new players to the team.
Kathleen Donehue, Whitney Granado, Jordan Haverly, Shawn Hindman, Kelci Marschall, Laura Matula and Sam Thrower will don the cream and crimson uniforms next fall as newcomers.

Of the seven, Haverly and Thrower come to IU with the most accolades.

Haverly was the 20th ranked player in the nation coming out of high school, as well as an All-American. She is also a transfer from 2008 Final Four participant Nebraska.
Thrower is a top-50 player out of Chicago.

Dunbar said she feels all the new players will make an impact.

“I feel like they all will fill a vital role for us,” she said.

Dunbar said she is not guaranteeing the recruits playing time right away. Starting spots will rest on how current members of the team perform, she said.

“I have no idea (who will start),” she said. “It depends on our returners and how hard they work.”

One of those returning team members is junior middle blocker Ashley Benson who is the Hoosiers’ top returning offensive player after recording 372 kills last year.
Benson said the new players should gel with the current team right away.

“We were really excited to meet them and they seemed to fit in with the program well,” she said.

Another returning team member is senior outside hitter Kelsey Hall, who is third on the team among returning players with 229 kills.

Hall said the new players bring skills the team has missed that will allow them to think big for the future.

“I am really excited because they have what we have been lacking in the past,” she said. “They have competition and drive and really want the program to win a national championship.”

Dunbar said the new recruits will make the team deeper and can get the Hoosiers to the NCAA tournament after the team missed it by just one game last year.

“For the first time since I have been here we are going to have depth, which is a great competitive advantage in practice,” she said. “We have the talent and it is about integrating the freshman and getting them up to speed as fast as possible.”

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