CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. - The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga volleyball head coach Lisa Rhodes announced that Jennifer Kuroski (Acworth, Ga.), Aneisha Christie (Alpharetta, Ga.) and Tess Kosycarz (Temecula, Calif.) have signed letters of intent to play with the Lady Mocs starting in the fall of 2010. All three players sent in their National Letters of Intent via fax and were finalized on April 15.
"This class of players are going to come into our program next fall and make an immediate impact," said Coach Rhodes. "We felt like they have the power, speed, athletic ability and consistency to bring the program the new heights in the conference and beyond."
The setting position was the main concentration for the Lady Mocs and Kosycarz is a talented lefty who played at Linfield Christian High School for head coach Danni Huffman-Schult. The Temecula, Calif., native should be able to provide consistency at the setting position in the fall for the Lady Mocs. Kosycarz was named all-area honorable mention in the Big Sky Volleyball League following the 2009 season. She has worked daily with Premier Volleyball Club Coach Todd O'Malley, who has guided her throughout her career.
"Coming into signing day, we needed a setter going into next season," said Rhodes. "And I am very excited to have Tess coming into the program. She has played year round as a setter and every day she does something with volleyball. I really like the fact that she can attack the second ball with power because she is left handed. Our outside hitters are going to be seeing a much more consistent set as her club coach Todd O'Malley has been increasing her skills during one-on-one sessions."
Another need for the squad was fulfilled with the signing of outside hitter Kuroski, who played at Harrison High school for head coach Clayton Taylor. The Acworth, Ga., native paced Hamilton in kills finishing eighth in the state of Georgia in 2009. Kuroski showed leadership on the court being the team's captain and honored to the all-area team and all-state honorable mention following last season. Club Coach Bob Westbrook guided her during the off season playing with A5 Volleyball.
"She has a heavy hand and is a banger on the outside," said Rhodes. "I think that she brings a lot of power on the outside for us, her technique and skills are excellent. We just need to work on strengthening her confidence because I think that she is going to be an impact player for us this fall."
Christie is a depth signee for the Lady Mocs at middle blocker and is going to help challenge current middles Courtney Barnes (Franklin, Tenn.) and Ellie Kuhn (San Antonio, Texas) with her athleticism. The Alpharetta, Ga., native played at Centennial High School for head coach Julia Faile earning MVP honors in 2006 and 2007, while also being named the best blocker following the 2007 season. This past year, Christie was honored by taking home her school's Scholar Athlete Award. Club Coach Chuck Grawford guided Christie during the spring and summer for A5 Volleyball.
"She is probably the most athletic of the three signees," said Rhodes. "She has a really strong body and is an excellent blocker and front row player that we needed. We are excited to develop another athletic middle blocker, her foot speed is a lot faster. It is going to put us in a situation with having a quicker setter that we are going to be able to run a more up tempo offense, then in the past."
The Lady Mocs finished the 2009 campaign at 12-17 and 4-8 in the Southern Conference as the squad was one of the youngest in recent memory. Chattanooga started off 8-3, which was the best start for the program since 1999 and included the title at the Lady Techster Home Tournament. Both middle blockers Kuhn and Barnes are returning, who were crucial pieces to the offense last year. The team's defense was led by Paula Passmore (Merritt Island, Fla.),who averaged 5.41 digs per set in her freshman campaign.
Volleyball Signing Class of 2010
Tess Kosycarz - S - 5-9 - Temecula, Calif. (Linfield Christian High School)
Jennifer Kuroski - OH - 5-11 - Acworth, Ga. (Harrison High School)
Aneisha Christie - MB - 6-0 - Alpharetta, Ga. (Centennial High School)