Monica Miesner has a chance to be the most prolific volleyball player Washburn has ever seen. Miesner, a junior outside hitter, has set the MIAA conference ablaze this year with one fabulous performance after another. Miesner hasn’t lost a step since taking a medical redshirt last year, after she suffered an elbow injury.
“I still don’t think that I’m playing up to my capabilities, which has been frustrating,” said Miesner. “But my main goal coming into the year was to stay healthy enough to help the team.”
Miesner was splendid against Northwest Missouri State Sept. 29, tying a school record with 28 kills to go along with 13 digs. Other top performances for Miesner include 31 digs and 16 kills against Pitt. State, 20 kills and 20 digs against Emporia State, 20 kills and 19 digs against Missouri Southern and 27 digs and 16 kills against Truman.
Miesner’s performances and competitive fire on the court have been an instrumental part in the team’s success, as she has led the Lady Blues to a 32-2 (12-1 MIAA) record, including a school record 27-game winning streak.
“I’m not really surprised by the team’s success this year,” said Miesner. “We had a good run my sophomore year and it’s pretty much the same team. Except now we are more experienced and understand the game better than our opponents.”
In 2005, Miesner was named a second-team All-American, and finished with a team-leading 505 kills. Miesner attended Trinity Catholic High School in Florissant, Mo., and was named the conference player of the year as a senior. She had several Division I offers, including James Madison University, but elected to stay closer to home.
“There is no question that Monica is one of the top three players I have ever coached,” said Chris Herron, Washburn volleyball coach. “She hates to lose, and all phases of the game for her are extremely good. The only other player I would put her up against for MIAA Player of the Year is Tessa [Jones].
“She’s a very competitive kid. She has that something in her that you can’t teach – you wish that you could teach other kids to be able to compete at her level. I hope that type of intensity and emotion rubs off on the rest of our kids, because she certainly has it.”
The Lady Blues will lose the senior trio of Jones, Erica Cowhick and Mandi Cox at the conclusion of the season. However, with the return of Miesner, along with a talented cast of players around her, the outlook for 2008 is shaping up very nicely.