Texan volleyball builds roster for 2022 season

By: Sydnie Grossnickle

Multimedia Journalist

Tarleton State University’s volleyball team season opener is around the corner, and here is what to expect. 

Half of the Texans’ 2021 roster either graduated or left the program, which left a lot of room for Head Coach Mary Schindler to rebuild the lineup. 

“The Texans return nine players from last season and added six freshmen and two DI transfers,” according to Tarleton Sports.    

The Texans have four returning defensive specialists in Ana Costas, Isabel Gonzaba, Emma Halcomb and Matti Theurer. Haley Flanagan and Brianna Rhodes are the program’s two returning middle blockers. 

Melina Maldonado is the program’s lone returning setter. Beall Busse and Meghan Haynes are the returning outside hitters.

Among the freshmen joining the program is Tampa, Florida, native Breanna McDonough. The right-side hitter comes from Berkeley Preparatory School, which ranked No. 3 nationally last season. 

“She has since been named AVCA All-American, a member of the AVCA Phenom List, and was recognized among AVCA’s ‘Best and Brightest,’” according to Tarleton Sports.

The Texans also added a defensive specialist and libero with Isabella Martinez. Martinez hails from Pflugerville, Texas. 

“Martinez was honored as the District 18-5A Co-Outstanding Defensive Player of the Year and named to both the AVCA Phenom List and AVCA All-Region Team following her senior campaign in 2021,” according to Tarleton Sports. 

Schindler signed two robust transfers to the 2022 roster. Both talented student-athletes came from fellow NCAA Division I programs. 

Grayson Schirpik going for a kill against Fairleigh Dickinson.
Photo Courtesy: Tarleton Athletics

Outside hitter Grayson Schirpik comes to Tarleton from the University of Houston. The 5’10” junior started her collegiate career at Texas Christian University in 2020.

“Grayson is a talented player who will bring a level of maturity and leadership into the gym every day,” Schindler said to Tarleton Sports. “I am excited about her work ethic as well as her ball control.” 

Schindler finalized the roster in late June with Northwestern State transfer Jaylibeth Garcia-Rosa. The 6’1” middle blocker and right-side hitter started all 30 matches in the 2021 season for the Lady Demons. 

The Toa Baja, Puerto Rico, native led the Southland Conference in solo blocks in 2021. She led the Lady Demons in total blocks and service aces last season.  

The Texans will begin conference play with a home match against the University of Texas, Rio Grande Valley, on Sept. 24, 2022. 

To learn more about Tarleton volleyball, check out tarletonsports.com/sports/womens-volleyball. 

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