The Seward County Community College volleyball program will open their 2007 season this weekend hosting the SCCC Kick-Off Classic, sponsored by Jolies Images. Action will begin at the Green House on Friday, Aug. 24 with five matches beginning at 11 a.m. Then action will conclude on Saturday, Aug. 25 with matches starting at 9 a.m. and the final match slatted for 5 p.m. Seward County opens their season hosting Cisco Junior College, Frank Phillips College, Garden City Community College and New Mexico Military Institute.

The Lady Saints will begin their 2007 season on Friday hosting Cisco J.C. at 1 p.m.and New Mexico Military at 7 p.m. Seward County will finish competition in the Kick-Off Classic on Saturday against Frank Phillips at 11 a.m. and Garden City at 5 p.m.

Seward County returns three players from last seasons team that went 23-25 overall and finished in second-place at the NJCAA D-I Region VI Tournament. Sophomores Alex Droogsma and Katy Troutman are the top returning players after both players were named All-Conference and All-Region VI during their freshman year.

Droogsma, a 5-foot-9-inch setter from Denver City, Texas, posted a school-record, and the second most assists in the nation with 1,751. Troutman, a 5-foot-4-inch libero from Broken Arrow, Okla., was equally impressive tallying a school-record 777 digs and recording 40 service aces. Troutmanís digs total was good for fifth in the NJCAA.

In two seasons as the head coach at Seward County, Bert Luallen has recorded an 8-5 overall record against opponents in the Kick-Off Classic.

The Lady Saints welcome eight newcomers to their roster including freshman outside hitters Dan Yang (Beijing, China), Jelena Simic (Lazarevac, Serbia) and Ami Wang (Sichuan, China); defensive specialists Vanessa Kraft (Ransom, Kan.) and Heather Zerr (Ulysses, Kan.); middle hitters Mallori Proffitt (Dumas, Texas) and Jenna Ginest (Stafford, Kan.); and setter Chelsea Myers (Salina, Kan.).

The team with the most impressive resume from last year is without a doubt Frank Phillips. The Lady Plainsmen finished with a 39-7 overall record, a Western Junior College Athletic Conference championship and were 6th place at the NJCAA National Tournament.

SCCC alum, and Frank Phillips head coach Charity Savedra welcomes back a squad that is loaded with returning players who made headlines in 2006. FPC starting setter, Perla Faudoa (209 kills, .382 hitting percentage, 1,397 assists) was a 2006 NJCAA First Team All-American and was a Co-Region V Most Valuable Player. Faudoa was named the Most Outstanding Player at the 2006 Kick-Off Classic.

The other player who shared the Region V Most Valuable Player award with Faudoa was returning Second Team NJCAA All-American Pamela Luiz (574 kills, .437 hitting percentage, 131 blocks), who also earned Kick-Off Classic All-Tournament team honors last season. In addition, Frank Phillips returns starting outside hitter Karina Bellato, who was a Honorable Mention All-Conference pick.

Frank Phillips won the SCCC Kick-Off Classic last season while not dropping a single game throughout four matches of competition.

New Mexico Military returns to Liberal for the Kick-Off Classic with 13 freshmen and one sophomore on their roster. NMMI finished last season with a 12-26 overall record. Second year head coach and SCCC alum Shelby (Smith) Forchtner returns to the Green House after last year recording a 2-2 record at the Kick-Off Classic with victories over SCCC and Cisco J.C.

Garden City finished last season with a 12-16 overall record, tying for fifth place in the Jayhawk West with a 2-6 conference record. Second year head coach Nikola Petrovic returns just two players from last season with eight newcomers. Returning sophomore Marelle Lepmets was a SCCC Kick-Off Classic All-Tournament team selection last season.

Cisco struggled in Kick-Off Classic competition last season with an 0-4 record (0-12 in games). Last season Avaniki Campbell (middle hitter) was the lone Lady Wrangler to be named to the Kick-Off Classic All-Tournament team list.