La Crosse, Wis. – Viterbo University volleyball head coach Ryan DeLong announced today that he has finalized his recruiting class for 2013 and will welcome seven new players to the program.
"I am really excited for our 2013 class: our staff has worked hard getting to know each one of them and feel they are all a great fit into our program and will be a huge part of keeping our program at the level it is at," commented Coach DeLong. "This class has a great mixture of height, athleticism, talent, and high volleyball IQ. This class fills many of the holes left from our seniors and with the current players we have on the roster, will bring a lot of positive competition among positions and a very competitive roster."
This year's class includes: Emma Gilbert (San Antonio, Texas), Danielle Green (McFarland, Wis.), Tiffany Stargardt (Marshfield, Wis.), Emilee Wiersma (Waupon, Wis.) and Kasia Wojciehoski (Stevens Point, Wis.). Coach DeLong had already announced back in July that Imani Mansfield (Minneapolis, Minn.) and Sara Biermaier (Woodbury, Wis.) had signed letters of intent to play for the V-Hawks.
This class will be looked upon right away to come in and compete as they have big shoes to fill. The 2013 class will have the task of replacing five seniors who helped take the V-Hawk program to new heights in 2012. The 2012 V-Hawks won a Midwest Collegiate Conference title and advanced to the NAIA National Tournament quarterfinals.
Emilie (Emma) Gilbert – San Antonio, Texas (6'0", Setter/Right Side)
Viterbo University Head Coach Ryan DeLong announced today that Emma Gilbert has signed a letter of intent to play for the V-Hawks in 2013.
"Emma has played a lot of volleyball in her life and we are excited for her to bring that experience to our program," stated Coach DeLong. "We love the potential she brings to the setting position; not only is she 6'0 which is great to have in a setter but she has a very high volleyball IQ. Emma also brings energy and enthusiasm for the game of volleyball; she definitely fits into what we look for in our players."
Gilbert will join the V-Hawks after graduating from Antonian College Preparatory High School where she earned four varsity letters. Gilbert has been a starter since her sophomore season and has been a part of two Texas State Championships and a final four appearance. Individually, Gilbert was honored as a honorable mention all-district selection as a sophomore, a second team all-district selection as a junior and a first team honor as a senior.
When asked why she chose Viterbo, Gilbert had this to say; "I think me going to Viterbo was a bit predetermined as I have been in catholic education my entire life, my mom was raised in La Crosse and my grandmother was a member of the board of trustees for many years at Viterbo. Also the fact that Viterbo has a very renowned nursing program along with a very successful volleyball program was key factors in my decision to become a V-Hawk. I am so excited to begin my journey towards becoming a registered nurse and can hardly wait to join the V-Hawk volleyball family.
Gilbert will pursue a degree in nursing.
Danielle Green – McFarland, Wis. (6'2", Middle/Right Side)
Viterbo University Head Coach Ryan DeLong announced today that Danielle Green has signed a letter of intent to play for the V-Hawks in 2013.
"Danielle can really dominate the opposing teams top hitters as she as great height, but more importantly can read the setter and is very athletic which allows her to close pin to pin," commented Coach DeLong. "With the speed and the type of hitters we see day in and day out she will play an important role in shutting them down. Danielle also has the ability to score on offense which will make team's game plan for her and take pressure off our other hitters."
Green will join the V-Hawks after graduating from McFarland High School where she lettered in volleyball the last three years. She finished her senior season with 173 kills and an impressive .358 hitting percentage. For her accomplishments as a senior she was named first team all-conference while helping her team finish 26-10-2 overall. As a junior, Green finished with 139 kills and 41 total blocks while being named honorable mention all-conference. Green has not only had success on the court for McFarland High School but also for Capital Volleyball Academy where she has played the last five seasons including the last two for the top 18's team.
When asked why she chose Viterbo, Green had this to say; "I really felt that Viterbo offered me the size of school and atmosphere that would allow me to be successful while giving me the opportunity to play volleyball. Coach DeLong treats the volleyball team like his second family and that really means a lot to me. He demonstrated this to me during the recruiting process, made me feel very welcome and showed that the intangibles were much more important than just being able to play volleyball."
Green will pursue a degree in biology.
Tiffany Stargardt – Marshfield, Wis. (5'8' outside hitter/defensive specialist)
Viterbo University Head Coach Ryan DeLong announced today that Tiffany Stargardt has signed a letter of intent to play for the V-Hawks in 2013.
"Tiffany's athletic ability makes her something special; though she is a little undersized hitter for us, her athletic ability and her ability to score against anyone is what we really like about Tiffany," stated Coach DeLong. "Tiffany has all the skills to be a very successful all-around player at the college level and we look forward to watching her develop."
Stargardt comes to Viterbo having been a two sport (volleyball and basketball) standout at Marshfield High School. Stargardt made an impact right away as a freshman as she was an honorable mention all-conference selection. Since then she has been named first team all-conference and team MVP her final three seasons in a Tigers uniform. She was also chosen as an All-State Honorable Mention recipient her junior and senior season.
Stargardt saved her best for her final season as she recorded 486 kills and 431 digs. She helped lead her team to a 34-8 overall record as they advanced to the WIAA Sectional Finals. Stargardt has also had plenty of volleyball success on the club circuit as she has played for Wisconsin Ice the last three seasons.
When asked why she chose Viterbo, Stargardt had this to say: "During my campus visit Coach DeLong and the team really made me feel like they wanted me to be a part of their program and put a strong emphasis on family. I really enjoyed the campus atmosphere and felt that Viterbo was a place that I could be successful both on and off the court. I look forward to continuing my volleyball career and getting a quality education from a university that has a great reputation.
Stargardt is contemplating a degree in education.
Emilee Wiersma – Waupon, Wis. (6'3" middle/right side hitter)
Viterbo University Head Coach Ryan DeLong announced today that Emilee Wiersma has signed a letter of intent to play for the V-Hawks in 2013.
"Emilee has the ability to score on offense as well as shut down the opposing team's best hitter," stated Coach DeLong. "Emilee is a 6'3 player that also has a lot of athletic ability. We love what she has accomplished at the high school and club level and are excited about the potential she has to come in and make us better. Emilee has all the tools to be successful at this level and we are looking forward to good things to come from her."
Wiersma had a stellar volleyball career at Waupon High School where she has been a first team all-conference selection her junior and senior season. As a senior, Wiersma finished with an impressive 640 kills and 59 total blocks. For her accomplishments as a senior, Wiersma was named honorable mention all-state. Wiersma continues to play volleyball at a high level as she is in her second season playing club volleyball for Fond du Lac Fusion.
When asked why she chose Viterbo, Wiersma had this to say: "Viterbo University seemed to be the perfect fit for me after I attended the volleyball camp last July. A small campus, a family atmosphere, a very competitive program and the community of La Crosse were all factors that played a role in my decision to attend Viterbo. In meeting with the staff, I could see the passion that they had for the program and could really tell that the volleyball program is going places. I really believe that I can be successful on the volleyball court and look forward to pursuing my educational goals at Viterbo.
Wiersma will pursue a degree in nursing.
Kasia Wojciehoski – Stevens Point, Wis. (5'6" defensive specialist)
Viterbo University Head Coach Ryan DeLong announced today that Kasia Wojciehoski has signed a letter of intent to play for the V-Hawks in 2013.
"Kasia has had success as an all-around player but we will focus on defense and ball control with her at the college level," commented Coach DeLong. "Kasia's athletic ability and passion for the game are two attributes we have seen in Kasia since we first started recruiting her. Those attributes along with her competiveness and drive to be successful will bring good things to her and our team in the future; we are excited to see what Kasia can do over the next four years."
Wojciehoski will join the V-Hawk volleyball family after graduating from Stevens Point Pacelli High School. As a sophomore, Wojciehoski was named team MVP and a second team all-conference selection. She would then earn first team all-conference honors as a junior and a senior. She has not only had success on her high school team but also on her club team as she has played four years for Wisconsin Ice and is currently playing for Wisconsin Volleyball Academy.
When asked why she chose Viterbo, Wojciehoski had this to say: "Viterbo University has such a great academic and athletic tradition and I am excited to have the opportunity to be a part of that tradition. Academically, I really liked the fact that they have small class sizes and a good student-teacher ratio along with a phenomenal nursing program. Athletically I have always dreamed of playing volleyball in college and I am thankful for the opportunity Coach DeLong has given me. After having the chance to practice with the team during the recruiting process I got the feeling that I was wanted and really fit in with the team. I am so excited for the opportunity to be a V-Hawk and look forward to being a part of such a successful program.
Wojciehoski will pursue a degree in nursing.