Warming Up For Fall Sports: Spikes and State Medals

By Vira H., staff writer

It was a fantasy. A tight knit group of talented athletes working together for a 2013 overall 54-2 record, the fourth best by any team in Georgia state history, and a third school state championship. The volleyball team is back at it again and they are preparing for yet another amazing season. The record so far is 33-3!

The team graduated several skilled players who graduated last year but junior Maggie Rick is not concerned. “The lineup definitely has to be a huge change from last year;  it is a completely different team,” said Maggie. “ Even though we have graduated some great players, we have three newcomers who all have an amazing amount of talent that can easily replace the talent we had last year. Everyone has a new role on the team this year whether it be in position, playing time, or leadership. It has all changed.”

While winning state championships is a great experience for the team, as well as the school, that is not what the girls are concerned about. “I try not to have expectations for the season like ‘winning state.’ I want to enjoy the small amount of time I have to play volleyball with my friends and just want to take it one day at a time and work as hard as we can to improve,” said junior Amber MacDonald. “Winning state would be a great bonus but what I want most out of this season is to reach our full potential as a team and feel satisfied when the season is over that we gave it our best shot. No regrets.”

“We hope to be the best team we can be,” said head volleyball coach Paul Stevens. “We want to do well on the court and off the court especially in terms of Serve for the Cure and the fundraising goal.”

Although high school volleyball season may end late in the fall, they it is by no means offseason. “Volleyball does not have an offseason,” said Amber. “The day high school season ends, club season starts. For club we practice four days a week and compete all around the country on the weekends. The season lasts from November to July. In July we are in the weight room and the gym four days a week to get ready for high school tryouts.”

This season, the team is led by seniors Katie Ray, Molly McAlvany, and Sabrina Hansen. The 2013 Lady Titans Volleyball team is very close knit and they are looking forward to accomplishing many victories this season. “I’m definitely most excited about our matches against other 3A schools,” said Maggie. “ In the beginning, we start with the toughest schedule possible to prepare us for the more important matches down the road in the state playoffs. It is way more exciting when the matches are really important to our success in playoffs.”

“We have a strong team and we expect to do well,” said Coach Stevens. “The team has gelled very well so far and hopefully we continue to steadily improve each week and crescendo to the end.”

As all motivated and excited players, Maggie wants to go all the way. “ I expect us to do incredibly this season,” said Maggie. “ Our goal is to be number one in the state when our season ends having won the state championship. Knowing how much work that is going to take only motivates us even more to work hard every day in practice.”

“ I love volleyball mostly for the people I get to meet that share the same passion for the sport that I do,” said Amber. “ My teammates become my best friends.” Come out and support our girls of fall!