High School Sports

Mount Baker Mountaineers volleyball preview

Coach: Paige Huttula

Last year: 5-12 overall, 4-8 NWC (10th place). ... Advanced to the Class 1A Northwest District Tournament, losing to Nooksack Valley in the opener before, defeating Blaine and eventually seeing its season come to an end with a loss to South Whidbey.

Players to watch: Emily Yost (Sr., S); Sara Verry (Jr., DS); Emily Brandland (Jr., MB); Maddy Tanis (Sr., MB).

Outlook: New coach Huttula has one very nice thing on her side: the Mountaineers have some really good size. Yost, Brandland, Tanis and Kaylee Schemstad all stand 5-foot-10 or taller, with Tanis above the rest at 6-2. And height in volleyball poses some serious challenges. Tanis, Brandland and Schemstad are all listed as middle blockers, again showing how Huttula can use their size to frustrate opposing teams’ hitters. Mount Baker looks like a team that is built around its defensive pressure, with junior Sara Verry being one the two team captains as a defensive specialist, and Yost being the other captain. The offense is going to run through Natalie Verry and Tanya Kashubin — the only listed outside hitters on Mount Baker’s roster.