DeLand, Fla. - Stetson Head Volleyball Coach Tim Loesch has announced his first recruiting class for the indoor program. All seven of these incoming student-athletes will be freshmen in 2011-12; three of them will also be members of the inaugural sand volleyball team at Stetson in the spring of 2012. The newcomers are Savannah Byl (Bradenton, Fla.), Samantha "Sam" Friday (Tampa, Fla.), Taylor Johnson (Omaha, Neb.), Morgan Pautsch (Huntington Beach, Calif.), Carla Sisi (Naples, Fla.), Taylor Story (Plano, Texas) and Erika White (Jacksonville, Ill.).
Byl (5'7" DS/OH) played four seasons of volleyball and three of softball at Southeast High School; for volleyball she earned team MVP and Manatee County All-Star Team honors while also being involved in the International Baccalaureate Program and named prom queen. Byl played for the Suncoast Volleyball Club under Coach Kristen Batt. Byl will play for the sand volleyball team in the spring and is no stranger to the beach; she won a USA Volleyball Dig the Beach Junior Series event at Siesta Key in 2010 in addition to a runner-up showing in 2009 and a second place at Clearwater Beach in 2008.
Friday (5'5" S/DS) has been an honor roll student throughout her time at Tampa's Alonso High School where she earned five varsity letters in volleyball and flag football. Her club volleyball team was the Tampa Bay Raptors. Friday will join the sand volleyball squad in the spring.
Johnson (6'0" OH/OPP) played three years of varsity volleyball for Coach Nick Schuster at Millard North High School where she earned All-Metro and All-State Honorable Mention. She also played club volleyball for Nebraska Elite under coach Shawn Kissman.
Pautsch (6'1" MH/OPP) played three years of varsity volleyball at Edison High School in California, where she was a Second Team All-Sunset League pick in 2010 for Coach Trent Jackson. She also played for Coach Monte Tucker's Orange County Volleyball Club (OCVC).
Sisi (5'1" DS) earned All-County Honorable Mention in volleyball at St. John Neumann High School in Naples for Coach Chris Addeo with 297 assists and 125 digs as a senior. Her match highs include 47 digs and 31 assists while she also starred in the classroom by making the Honor Roll and Principal's List. Born in Davao City, Phillipines, Sisi's father Peejay played professionally there at age 16. Carla played club volleyball with Naples Volleyball Association (NVA).
Story (5'11" OH/DS) comes to Stetson from Plano (Texas) Senior High School, where she was an Academic All-District and First Team All-District selection for Coach Jennifer Cron. She led the Wildcats to three Bi-District titles as well as one area championship and regional finals appearance. Her club team, Texas Advantage (TAV), qualified for the Junior Olympic championships this summer. Story is also a two-time AVPNext junior beach champion and will play sand volleyball for Stetson in Spring 2012.
White (6'2" S/MH) was an Illinois State Scholar and National Honor Society member at Routt Catholic High School as well as a Wendy's High School Heisman nominee. She helped lead Coach Pat Gibson's Rockets to two regional titles and a sectional crown while also playing four years of varsity basketball, picking up All-Area laurels from two regional newspapers as well as 2009 All-State Honorable Mention. White also played for Coach Geoff Davis at the H2 St. Louis Volleyball Club as well.
"It is exciting to be able to bring in a quality class this late that is committed to rebuilding our program," Coach Loesch said. "Each is a well-rounded player that has trained and played at several positions at a high level. This gives us more flexibility in the lineup, more competition in practice and depth in our roster. In addition, all are outstanding students that fit the Stetson profile for a scholar-athlete.""I'm looking forward to seeing this group mesh with our returning players and compete in the A-Sun. It will be a fun challenge to determine what roles each of them will play and helping them improve individually. Some of them should be able to contribute immediately, while others may help us more in the future. They will be a fun group to coach over the next four years."