After winning its first conference title in school history, Panther Creek (19-5, 14-2) is under new management this year. Karen Garmon will coach the Catamounts, who will welcome back all-conference players Emily Maggio (163 kills, 263 digs) and Alani Alderman (375 assists).
Fuquay-Varina (20-4, 13-3) graduated four players and returns middle blocker Deja Byrd, among others.
Apex (16-7, 12-4) should be one of the league’s most experienced teams, bringing back all-conference Sunday Peoples (810 assists), Madeline Rudd (212 kills), Natalie White and all-conference Alyssa Hansen (74 blocks).
Green Hope (15-8, 11-5) brings hitters Erin Boone and Chloe Ruffieux. Athens Drive (12-8, 10-6) has all-conference performer Allison Lake.
Holly Springs (9-12, 6-10) brings back hitters Kayla Arthur (114 blocks) and Madi Lancaster as well as setters Gabby Isaacs and Asia Greenhill. The Golden Hawks, one of five SWAC playoff teams, also have three players returning with 200 or more digs: Karrington Cooper, Meghan Beck and Adrian Dailey.
Middle Creek (9-15, 4-12) returns all-conference hitter Emily Durham (216 kills, 190 digs, 74 blocks) as well as setter Elise Herring (479 assists).
Cary (2-18, 1-15) graduated just four player while Apex Friendship (1-15, 1-15), which now has a junior class but still no seniors, brings back its entire roster.
LAST 10 SWAC CHAMPS
2015: Panther Creek
2014: Green Hope
2011: Apex and Green Hope
SWAC STATE TITLES