CHARLOTTE, NC (August 28, 2023) – The Claflin Lady Panthers will have a new mission heading into the 2023 season. When the Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association (CIAA) announced its preseason predicted order of finish, the Lady Panthers were picked to finish sixth. The team earned the ranking after a series of injuries decimated the squad last season when they finished the season ranked eighth in the conference.
The ranking came after a season where injuries plagued the team and left them with a disappointing finish. As a team, the Lady Panthers compiled a 12-10 overall record and a 6-9 record in CIAA play. The team also finished fourth in the CIAA Southern Division where the team went 5-5.
This season, the Lady Panthers will look to some experienced leaders returning to blaze a trail into the 2023 season. Senior opposite side hitter Kyndall Perry is the Lady Panthers leading returner with 101 kills, six assists, and 16 digs. One bright spot for the team will be the setter position where the Lady Panthers will return with some great experienced players. Sophomore Siri Davis led the team with 211 assists. She was also ranked second on the team with 24 service aces as well. Fellow sophomore MeAuhre Lewis added 167 assists. Defensively, senior libero Jasmine Kirkland returns to lead the way for the team as she finished the season as the team leader and ranked sixth in the CIAA with 251 digs for the season. She also added 19 service aces of her own.
Joining the returners will be a strong cast of newcomers. Among the newcomers will be defensive specialist Jada Buckhanon, a transfer from North Carolina Central and junior utility Keymara Coleman, a transfer from Columbia Basin College. Junior outsider hitter Taylin Johnson, an outside hitter from Glenville State, will also add some offensive punch to the team’s attack.
The Lady Panthers will begin their 2023 season, Thursday, when the team heads to Salem, West Virginia to take on the Salem Tigers. For more information on Lady Panthers volleyball, contact the Claflin University Office of Athletics Media Relations at (803) 535-5548 or log on to www.athletics.claflin.edu.