Porter-Gaud volleyball team has new head coach, but same high expectations
The Porter-Gaud volleyball team has a new coach, but expectations haven’t changed for the successful program.
After coaching the Cyclones to three straight SCISA titles, Ashley Heidtke moved to Georgia when her husband took a job there. Megan Parkerson was promoted to varsity coach after serving as Heidtke’s assistant for five years.
Porter-Gaud also had to replace some key players, including all-state selections Julia McAvoy and Lexie Meyer, who graduated last year.
The transition has been smooth as the Cyclones won 10 of their first 12 matches this season.
Parkerson, a Nashville native who played for Southern Conference champion College of Charleston from 2004-07, said the team is faring well and should battle Ashley Hall and First Baptist for Lowcountry supremacy in the SCISA ranks.
“Ashley did a terrific job,” Parkerson said. “The team was extremely successful and my job is to keep it going. But we lost a lot of talent and we have a young team.”
The team doesn’t have a senior on the roster, but many of the players have stepped up as leaders. Among them are juniors Chelsea McKelvey, Tanner Renken, Marla Sagatelian and Elle Blakeney.
There are some talented sophomores, as well, including Gracie Mogul, who has been named a member of Under Armour’s prestigious “Phenom Watch List” for 2013. This honor is the equivalent of UA’s All-America Watch List for seniors, but is limited to underclassmen.
“We have adopted the right attitude,” Parkerson said. “The players know they have to follow in past players’ footsteps when it comes to hard work. Winning is definitely this team’s goal, but we might have some ups and downs.”
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