Lady Dragons move up to No. 5 ranking in nation

Posted Monday, Oct. 21, 2013  comments  Print Reprints

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Wherever he has coached, state and national recognition has followed Carroll head volleyball coach Arthur Stanfield.

The Lady Dragons (39-1, 11-0 in District 4-5A) remained No. 2 in the Texas Girls Coaches Association Class 5A poll behind The Woodlands. But when it comes to the national poll, that’s another story.

Carroll is ranked No. 5 in the national poll. Stanfield said the Lady Dragons started out at No. 12 before moving to No. 11 and No. 8 before they moved up to their current position. This kind of attention just comes with the territory for this program.

“I just tell the players it doesn’t mean anything,” Stanfield said. “You don’t get any bonus points when you step out on the court. Really, it’s a case where you have a bulls-eye on you because those teams look at you and want to beat you.

“Still, it’s an honor for the kids. But it all goes back to having to continue to do it on the court.”

The key to these national rankings, though, doesn’t occur between August and November. Rather, it starts in the spring and summer when it comes to the club volleyball teams’ competition. Although the players are not representing Carroll per se, those who are plugged in know where the club players attend high school.

Then the process starts where those club teams are usually seeded pretty high in those tournaments and advance far enough where they will continue to be seeded pretty high.

“People expect us to be a pretty good team,” Stanfield said. “You just have to do what you can to be successful.”

As it should be

When the Lady Dragons clinched a playoff berth last week, neither the coaches nor the players talked about it, because well, that’s just what was supposed to happen.

As for clinching the District 4-5A championship on Tuesday (after the press deadline) with an expected win over Keller Central, Stanfield said the furthest that he would go with his squad is just acknowledging the accomplishment and moving on to Friday’s match at Keller.

For this program, winning a state championship is now expected, despite this program never playing in the state tournament.

“Our goals are so far down with what we’re trying to do,” Stanfield said.

In the short term, this program entered the week nine sets away from taking the Saturday after the season (Nov. 2) off. Carroll plays Frisco Lovejoy in a non-district warm up match on Nov. 1. The Lady Dragons were also about to clinch their fourth consecutive 40-win season. They won 41 in 2010, 44 in 2011 and 47 in 2012.


Stanfield is trying to take it easy with junior middle blocker Madison Drescher. Drescher is bothered by a sore right shoulder and did not play against Justin Northwest last Friday, but did play last Tuesday against Haltom.

The plan was for Drescher to meet with the Carroll training staff this week to determine the best course of action. That made her availability for this week at Keller Central and Keller questionable.

The good news is that there is no structural damage to her rotator cuff and labrum, Stanfield said. It’s considered more fatigue because of extended use between club and high school ball.

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