Head coach: Kathy McGeehan (first season). Assistant coach: Shawn Cole.
Last year: Chariho finished 13-7 in 2019 before losing in the Division II quarterfinals.
Returning to varsity:
Seniors: Michaela Azzinaro (OH), Jasmine Babbitt (MH), Morgan Chatell (RSH), Alexa Kieltyka (OH), Casey Mastin (S). Juniors: Kelechi Ezemma (OH), Jenna Loring (libero).
New to varsity:
Senior: Faith Ellis (libero). Juniors: Hannah Jackson (MH/OH), Eliah King (MH), Ava Rao (S). Freshmen: Alexis Cole (OH), Emma Kocab (libero).
Outlook: Chariho starts the season with a new coach.
McGeehan is a retired Long Island physical education teacher who lives in Wickford. She coached 39 years at East Hampton where her teams own 13 league titles, two county championships and reached the New York Final Four once. They were undefeated in league play seven times. She is in the East Hampton athletic Hall of Fame.
Babbitt will be relied on for her hitting, and Mastin returns as the setter. Cole will also do some setting. Loring will lead the defensive effort on the back row.
King will also be counted on as a hitter, as will Kieltyka and Azzinaro. Chatell can contribute in the middle. Kocab and Ellis will also contribute, and Rao will be the backup setter.
Chariho’s success will rely on the first contact. When it’s good, McGeehan said, the Chargers will be “in system.”
“When we are taking care of the ball with our first contact we will be a team to be reckoned with offensively,” McGeehan said. “When we are out of system, that is where we will have to grind things out. I hope those two things come together.”
McGeehan said improving the first touch and making smart decisions will help the team improve as the season moves along.
“I don’t have any knowledge of past performance, who is a gamer,” McGeehan said. “We are trying to make those scenarios happen in practice.”
Coach’s take: “We have been standing on a platform of gratitude just to be able to play. Their goals are to keep academics first and go further than they did in 2019. We will not necessarily focus on outcomes but put ourselves in a position to win every match and improve every day.”
— Keith Kimberlin