The 2017-18 East Tennessee State University volleyball season is coming up.

On Aug. 19 the Bucs had their first live game action scrimmaging the Charlotte 49ers. The Bucs won 3-2 at home. The first set was won by the Bucs with a score of 25-23. The second set, the 49ers responded, winning 25-19. The Bucs took the third set, 25-20, and the 49ers took the fourth set with the same score of 25-20.

The Bucs battled to secure the win, beating the 49ers in the fifth set, 15-12. Senior Rylee Milhorn (Kingsport, Tennessee) and junior Aj Lux (Shelbyville, Indinana) led the team in kills with 15 apiece. While transfer sophomore Leah Clayton (Danville, Virginia) led the team with 17 digs.

Bucs head coach Lindsey Devine felt the team did a good job overall utilizing all attackers. As a team, the Bucs had 162 attacks compared to the Charlotte 49ers’ 147. There are many things Devine said she feels the team can always improve on with the team entering four tournaments before conference play. “Our goal is to get 1 percent better every day. Whether it’s blocking footwork, everyone can improve,” Devine said.

The Bucs had a very successful regular season last year, posting a 22-8 record and going 13-3 in conference play. With a conference best 13 wins, the Bucs clinched the Southern Conference regular season title.The Bucs fell short of making it to the conference championship, losing in the conference semifinals. Last season was the best record the Bucs had since the 2010-11 season.

This year’s team returns nine players on its roster with some of the core pieces from last season still intact. With only one senior on the roster, the Bucs will look for collective leadership to keep their goals and expectations consistent. “Our goal is to obviously win so, we know where we start this season will not be where we finish,” Devine said. “If we bring an aggressive mindset winning will come with it.”

Devine said everyone on the roster has a crucial role. The Bucs will not rely on just a few players to reach their goals. “Whoever is on the court at some point in the season when it comes time to play, everyone needs to be ready.”