The Blackburn College enters the 2019 season with a new coach and a very youthful team. Morgan Hauser has taken over the reins of a program that has begun to show increased improvement over the past four season. Blackburn was picked for 8th place in the 10-team St. Louis Intercollegiate Athletic Conference. The Beavers won six conference games a year ago which was the highest amount since 2008. Hauser returns four players with significant experience in junior hitter Kaitlyn Wiegand, junior setter Kendall Burleyson who set the school record with 45 serving aces in 2018. Junior Annika Ochs and sophomore hitter Lucy Magnussen return for the Beavers along with sophomores Kasey Bean and Karlee Herman.
Hauser brought in six new freshmen to round out the 2019 roster. Amanda Swedberg, Autumn Wilson, Elizabeth Bowyer, Sabrina Kelsey, Kiah Bedwell and Madeline Boll begin their college careers at Blackburn.
"We fell right where the team finished last season in the preseason polls. We plan to work hard every day in practice and at every competition to establish a stronger program. We have six strong returners that have done a wonderful job leading the newcomers on and off the court. Our six freshmen all have the drive and determination that this team needs to continue to improve in the SLIAC. We are a young team, but our culture and team chemistry is becoming stronger every day," said Hauser.
After a pair of exhibition matches, the Beavers begin thier season by hosting St. Mary of the Woods on August 31 at 11:00 AM.