BELDING — It didn’t take long for the Belding Redskins to get into high gear on the volleyball court this season.
The Redskins, coming off a second consecutive district title last year (four titles in the past five seasons), opened the season with a championship at The Daily News Volleyball Invitational on Saturday at home.
Belding went undefeated in pool play and defeated the Greenville Yellow Jackets 25-22, 18-25, 15-9 in the finals to win.
“We have a team that loves to work hard,” Belding coach Mikayla Linebaugh said. “We have good team chemistry and all our girls have returned with experience.”
In all, the Redskins have nine letter winners from last year’s team. They include sophomores Samantha McNeal, Brooke Linebaugh, Peyton Mount and Greta Wilker and seniors Stefanie Harig, Hannah Linebaugh, Carrie Smith, Rachel Hunt and Gabby Holyfield.
“We are looking forward to a great season with all our returners,” Linebaugh said. “Stefanie, Hannah and Rachel are four-year varsity players and Gabby is a three-year player.
“I have seen a lot of growth and maturity in our young girls,” she added.
The Redskins return to action tonight at home against Saranac. Belding will step into conference action with a matchup against Coopersville on Sept. 5 (third match of the year).
Coopersville, along with Belding, is one of the top returning teams in the O-K Blue.
“It’s a tough, evenly matched conference,” Linebaugh said. “I feel we will be at the top. Coopersville will be tough with a lot of returning players.”