California, Montenegro Talents Freshen Up Chaminade Team

Women’s volleyball fans will see a Chaminade team largely made up of fresh faces in the fall.

That much was assured last week when head coach Kahala Kabalis revealed her seven-member recruiting class, which will comprise one-third of the entire team, including three junior college transfers and four freshmen, two of them from Hawaii.

Several new arrivals could be in the lineup right away. “We are extremely excited about the incoming 2014 class,” Kabalis said. “While we lost four players from last fall, we knew it was very important for us to bring in athletes that can make an immediate impact.”

Recruits include Cassidy Acord (Brandeis High School, from San Antonio, Texas), Madalene Barrett (Fullerton Junior College, from Fullerton, Calif.), Suncica Bakic (Eastern Arizona JC, from Bar, Montenegro), Waihilo Chartrand (Eastern Arizona JC, from Hilo), Natashya Enos (Saint Francis High, from Aiea), Kira Long (Rancho Buena Vista High, from San Diego) and Catherine Thomason (Marin Catholic High, from San Rafael, Calif.).

“We feel confident with this group of young ladies. Not only will they bring in height at the net, intensity on the court, but also athleticism and the desire to put Chaminade on the map,” Kabalis said. “We are looking forward to what these athletes will contribute this fall.”

Enos, who led nearby Saint Francis to state Division II titles in girls volleyball in 2011 and 2012 (and a third-place finish last season) had opportunities to attend East Coast colleges but elected to stay home and play for the Silverswords. She also liked Chaminade’s smaller setting, which offers classrooms as opposed to lecture halls.

“I’m excited, and I’m relieved,” said Enos, who was a 2013 ILH Second Team All-Conference pick from Saint Francis. “It’s a good feeling. It was always my dream to play at home and in front of my family. I also wanted to go to a school where there’s a lot of one-on-one (communication) with the teachers.”

Enos also competes locally for ASICS Rainbow Volleyball Club.

Kabalis also is excited to have Chartrand, who played at Hilo High in 2010, when she helped lead the Vikings to a third-place finish in the state DII championships. Chartrand already is enrolled at Chaminade, having played for the Kaimuki school during the spring sand volleyball season. A transfer from Eastern Arizona College – where she finished third in the Arizona Community College Athletic Conference in digs per set at 4.29 last season – Chartrand has two years of eligibility remaining at CU.

Thomason is a 6-0 senior outside hitter and was a four-year starter at her high school. A native of San Rafael, she was voted the Wildcats’ team captain her senior year and earned First Team All-Marin County Athletic League honors.

Acord is a 6-foot outside hitter, and she led the Brandeis High Broncos in kills with 336 as a senior. She was chosen First Team All-District, First Team Academic All-District and was an Academic All-State honoree for her efforts last year in her home state of Texas.

Barrett, a 6-0 outside hitter, led the Fullerton JC Hornets in kills at 3.34 per set last season, while garnering All-Orange Empire Conference First Team honors.

Bakic is a 6-0 outside hitter/opposite and a transfer. A native of Montenegro, Bakic already has competed six seasons for her home-town, which won the National Cup title three times.

Long is a 5-9 outsider hitter and was a three-year varsity letter-winner at her high school, helping lead the Longhorns to the CIF San Diego Section Division I title last fall, the school’s first in 17 years. Long earned All-CIF San Diego Second Team honors as well as San Diego Section First Team accolades.