Volleyball preview: No. 1 Bishop McLaughlin

Bishop McLaughlin

At a glance

Coach: Doug Chinchar

Class: 3A, District 5

Last season: 24-3, lost in state semifinals

Key players: S Naomi Chinchar, So.; OH Maddie Snider, Jr.; MH Ezzie Thompson, Jr.; OH Ali Waldon, Jr.; 


Aug. 25 d. Fivay 3-0

Sept. 3-4 Nike Tournament of Champions (Orlando)

Sept. 10-11 at Bishop McLaughlin Tournament

Sept. 21 vs. Academy of the Holy Names, 6:30

Sept. 23 vs. Tampa Bay HEAT, 4:30

Oct. 1-2 Nike Tournament of Champions (Phoenix)

Oct. 5 vs. Calvary Christian, 5

Oct. 7 at Carrollwood Day, 4:30


In the past four seasons, the Hurricanes are a combined 93-14 and have established themselves as consistent state title contenders. The biggest loss was Audrey Koenig, the Prime Time Preps’ Pasco County player of the year who graduated and is now playing at FSU. Though her departure hurts, there was no sense of doom among this program. Forget rebuilding. Bishop McLaughlin simply reloaded. There are plenty of returners, led by FSU commit Maddie Snider (269 kills, 41 blocks last season) and Mercer commit Ali Waldon (94 kills, 85 digs). The list does not end there. Ezzie Thompson (102 kills, 54 blocks) can be a force at the net and setter Noami Chinchar (738 assists) ranks among the best in the state. Two newcomers — middle blocker Lorelei Church and libero Lola Buck-Taylor — give the Hurricanes enough firepower to offset any losses. Bishop McLaughlin started the season with a sweep over defending region finalist Fivay. Most of the schedule is filled with national tournaments to get ready for the postseason.