At age 23, Jenny Burton was looking forward to earning her first varsity coaching job in girls volleyball.

At age 23, Jenny Burton was looking forward to earning her first varsity coaching job in girls volleyball.

She just never expected that the opportunity would arrive so quickly.

Burton was named to replace Erica Goodwin as coach at Marysville High School after Goodwin resigned earlier this year as she prepared for the birth of her child in June.

Burton, a 2006 graduate of Fairbanks, was the Monarchs freshman coach last season.

"I'm ready," Burton said. "I was hesitant at first, but now I'm excited because I've always dreamed about having this position. It's a little earlier than I planned on taking it, but I'm glad that I took it."

Burton takes over a team that was 5-18 overall and 3-11 in the OCC-Cardinal Division last season. The Monarchs lost to Dublin Jerome 26-24, 25-18, 25-23 in the first round of the Division I district tournament.

Marysville opened Aug. 27 against North Lewisburg Triad and Bellefontaine Benjamin Logan. The Monarchs will play host to Olentangy Liberty on Tuesday, Aug. 30, in their OCC-Cardinal opener.

Back is senior middle hitter Janelle Yunker, who was honorable mention all-OCC last season when she had 112 kills and 29 aces.

Other seniors are Vanessa Boyd (outside hitter), Laciee Broderick (right-side hitter), Katie Haas (defensive specialist), Arika Mowery (defensive specialist), Ally Ratliff (setter), Sam Simmons (defensive specialist) and Juliana Scheiderer (right-side hitter).

Juniors Emily Euans (middle hitter), Hannah Stanley (setter), Mickie Schaffer (outside hitter) and Riley Tangerman (outside hitter) round out the team.

Simmons and Yunker will begin the season as captains, but Burton said another vote to determine captains will be held midway through the season.

Marysville must replace 2011 graduate Jeni Jordan, an outside hitter who was first-team all-OCC last season.

"They really want to succeed," Burton said of her team. "They're committing to succeeding in terms of their conditioning or asking questions. They want to learn, so that desire and that drive are really going to be beneficial to them. They really have a lot of talent, but they need to make it a team talent and not an individual talent."

Last season, Marysville tied Jerome for sixth in the OCC-Cardinal, behind Liberty (13-1), Westerville Central (12-2), Westerville North (11-3), Olentangy (7-7) and Dublin Scioto (5-9) and ahead of Westerville South (2-12).

"The girls want to be consistent and in terms of their matches on the court, they want to be positive and intense," Burton said. "I just want to see them learn and increase their volleyball knowledge. I'm not really concerned with the winning record. I think that will come, but I just want to see them really learn more about volleyball and to apply that knowledge."

•Several returning runners will lead the cross country teams in coach Tom Borawski's ninth season.

Junior Aaron Cingle is the top runner back from last season on the boys team.

Senior Devin Smarra and junior Nathan Wasik also have returned and are expected to secure spots in the top seven.

"Aaron has been a top runner his first two years and we're looking for that this year also," Borawski said. "Nathan and Devin were top seven last year."

Marysville is looking to replace two key runners from last season in 2011 graduates Joe Stammen and John Applegate.

Borawski expects juniors Josh Brady, Clay Cochran, Ryan Fitzgerald and Michael Reed, sophomores T.J. Borawski, Steven Milroy and Matthew Reed and freshman Michael Coffey to contend for top-seven spots. T.J. Borawski is the coach's son.

Fitzgerald missed most of last season with a hip injury. Michael and Matthew Reed are brothers.

Last season, the Monarchs were eighth (187 points) in the OCC-Cardinal meet, behind Westerville North (27), Liberty (60), Westerville Central (81), Olentangy (109), Scioto (137), Jerome (144) and Westerville South (169).

The Monarchs were seventh (206) in the Division I, district 1 meet, behind first-place Dublin Coffman (26).

Senior Brooke Brown should lead the girls team.

Brown, who also is a standout distance runner on the track and field team, won the OCC-Cardinal meet last fall with a time of 19 minutes, 6.94 seconds.

Also back are seniors Emily Fitzgerald and Ellie Prinster and sophomore Lindsay Longbrake.

Emily Fitzgerald, who is Ryan Fitzgerald's sister, is expected to miss the start of the season with knee and ankle injuries.

Other runners expected to contribute are senior Samantha Patrick, junior Ashley Zani, sophomores Jessie Kmietsch, Melissa Sanders, Victoria Williams and Meranda Wilson and freshman Riley Nelson.

Last season in the OCC-Cardinal meet, Marysville was fourth (112) behind Scioto (28), Jerome (65) and Central (105) and ahead of North and Olentangy (119), Liberty (122) and South (234).

The Monarchs finished ninth (210) behind first-place Coffman (26) in the Division I, district 2 meet.

"My top seven will probably change a lot this year, which is a nice thing," Borawski said. "We might have 10, 12 runners fighting for a top-seven (spot). They're good kids and they're working hard. It's going to be an exciting year for them."