Aug. 16, 2004
The Seminoles return, and have added, a lot of power at the outside and opposite position. ACC and East Region Rookie of the Year Cassie McLaughlin returns for her sophomore season along with Kristen Rust, Sarah Griffin, Nikki Anthony and Renee Hill. On top of that, Coach Kress has brought in Andreza Santos, Danielle McDonald and Summer Weissing for what should provide for a potent offense. Junior transfer Lauren Scott also has the ability to play the opposite, so don’t be surprised if she plays both the opposite and middle positions for FSU.
Coach Kress on the Outside Hitters/Opposites:
“Cassie fit into a role that we needed last year and did a great job in fitting into that role. We needed someone to take over the offensive load and she did that very well. She led us in kills and was the ACC and East Region Freshman of the Year. Cassie is somebody that will out work anyone. If there is a competition ahead of her, she is going to try and go out and win that competition.”
“The nice thing about our team this year is that we have more depth at every position. We have so many great athletes at every position. The outsides definitely have more depth there than anything with Nikki Anthony, Andreza Santos, Kristen Rust, Summer Weissing, Sarah Griffin and even Renee Hill could play some outside for us, so we have a lot of depth at the outside spot. The one thing we need to do this year at the outside spot is score and score consistently. If you look at the top programs in our conference and in the country, they have outsides that consistently score, don’t make mistakes and keep the ball in play. Last year we made too many mistakes and unforced errors at that position that we can improve on this year.”
Aisha Carr and Amanda Santos both return for their senior seasons as one of the most dominant duos in the ACC at the middle position. They both battled through injuries in 2003, but if they stay healthy, they could help push Florida State into one of the elite programs in the country. The addition of an experienced player in Lauren Scott along with returning senior Ashley Meyer and freshman Danielle McDonald, the Seminoles have plenty of depth in the middle.
Coach Kress on the Middles:
“Again, this is a position with a lot of depth for us. Part of our success is going to be determined on how healthy we are and how some of the kids return from offseason surgeries. At this point, Aisha Carr is 100 percent and Amanda Santos is working into 100 percent. If those two are at 100 percent and Lauren Scott comes in and picks up on our offensive system quickly, while throwing in Ashley Meyer and Danielle McDonald into the mix, that will be the core of our team. They’re very physical, very dynamic and probably the most athletic middles in the conference. A lot of it is going to depend on how well our setter (Jessica Skower) is able to find our middles in transition and in the offense and getting into a flow with our middles to be able to score consistently. If that happens early in our preseason, I think that will have a lot to do with our success and we will be able to be very successful throughout the year.”