Tonawanda News —
The Wildcats dropped only one set on their way to the championship and Fretthold said her team was one of the more intense and battle-tested squads in the tournament. Daemen dropped the set in the first game of the championship match against Florida College, the three-time defending USCAA champions equipped with talented and aggressive outside hitters.
Fretthold said Daemen made adjustments after the first-set blunder and began to attack the middle of the Florida defense. It worked and the Wildcats won the next three sets (25-22, 25-23, 25-19) en route to the win.
Wildcats junior Kaley Vazquez (a former Kenmore West Blue Devil) said that one of the most impressive parts of the Wildcats' championship run was the way the team came together. She said the team's chemistry and level of communication stems directly from Fretthold's leadership.
"She is a great leader and she's been a captain since I've been here," Vazquez said. "It's going to be really hard next year for our coach to fill her shoes because she does so much on and off the court for our team. She's really passionate about volleyball, she's hard-working and always wants to win."
Daemen assistant coach Carolyn Bell was forced to miss parts of the season because of a pregnancy, so Fretthold became sort of like the team's "second coach," according to Vazquez. She made sure players were doing the right things, arriving on time for practice and that the net was always set up for practice.
Fretthold's impact on the court will also be missed.
"She's been my outside since I was a freshman," Vazquez said. "She gets probably about 75 percent of the balls and she's on the court the whole game. Her presence on the court will be hard to replace."