The Howard Lady Tigers have just one senior among eight returning letter-winners for volleyball this fall.
The only senior letter-winner is Katelyn Feldhaus. Others returning are juniors Emma Rudebusch, Mia Glanzer, Aleya Kizer and Katlin Schlim; along with sophomores Kate Connor, Piper Thompson and Rylee Rudebusch.
Sarah Feldhaus begins her second year as the Lady Tigers' head coach. Last season, Howard finished the season with a 6-13 record.
Feldhaus (middle hitter), E. Rudebusch (setter), Glanzer (setter), Kizer (outside hitter), Thompson (outside hitter) and Connor (middle hitter) all were starters throughout the season for Howard.
"Bridgewater-Emery and Ethan both secured spots at the State Tournament last season, and they should be the teams to beat in the Cornbelt Conference this season," Feldhaus said.
Howard lost a seasoned Libero and a middle hitter who dominated at the net.
"We had a group of great leaders who graduated last year," Feldhaus said, "but we have some girls coming up that have been working hard and are ready to become assets to the team."
Assisting Feldhaus this season are Audre Nilges and Adyson Glanzer (junior high coach).
Howard will open the season on Tuesday when the Lady Tigers go to DeSmet for a non-conference match starting at 6:15 p.m. Howard's first home match is Aug. 27 against Oldham-Ramona-Rutland with the first game starting at 6:15 p.m.
"We look forward to a safe and successful season with several returning starters," Feldhaus said. "The girls have been putting in lots of hours at home and in the gym.