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A force to be reckoned with: Senior duo strongarms volleyball team to the top
Kimberly Gerdes
Antelope Staff
Lopers.com
Cola Svec
Lopers.com
Katlyn Heiserman

Rocky: adj. the type of road that leads to the top. Mountain: n. climbed daily in pursuit of perfection. Athletic: ajd. a way of life for students. Conference: n. a gathering of elite. Player: n. an individual who makes a team possible. Year: 365 days of commitment to volleyball excellence.

Seniors, Cola Svec and Katlyn Heiserman know about the hard work and dedication it takes to be a top Division II athlete.

Svec, a business administration major from Elkhorn, was honored with the 2010 RMAC Preseason Setter of the Year award and Heiserman, an exercise science major from Manchester, Iowa, was honored with the 2010 RMAC Preseason Defensive Player of the Year award. Both players have set high goals for this season of volleyball.

“As an individual, I want to do whatever I can to contribute to the team by playing consistently and working hard every day. We want to be a national championship contender. The team has set goals that gradually get us to our biggest goal of being a national champion team,” Svec said. Those goals include winning the RMAC, regular season and tournament, making it to the regional tournament and qualifying for the Elite 8.

“I want to see the team play our best volleyball at the end of the season. I want us to grow and get better during each match and practice. If we do those things, we should set ourselves up to be successful in the conference and postseason play,” Heiserman said.

Both Svec and Heiserman say they are honored to receive their awards, but realize that without their teammates it wouldn’t have been possible.

“It’s just an added reason to work hard, but it is kind of one of those things you hear about, say ‘thanks,’ and move on and not think about very often,” Heiserman said.

“I think it’s awesome, but my focus is dedicated to what I can do to contribute to our team’s success,” Svec added.

According to Heiserman, the loss of four seniors last season won’t have too much of a bearing on the 2010 season. “We have a good core group of seniors who have a lot of experience and some younger girls with a lot of enthusiasm. As a senior, the leadership has been upped a little, I try to make sure I’m doing things that would be worth following like staying focused and going hard all the time,” Heiserman said.

Svec has always felt like a natural leader. “Last year I felt like I stepped into a leadership role, and I want to continue that this year. This year's seniors have the ability to lead the team to a great year,” she said.

The Lopers have started their season off right with a record of 15-3. Their next matchup is 7 p.m. Oct. 7 with Bellevue at the Health and Sports Center.

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