When the Keller Central volleyball team travels to Granbury this week, it will present a very different look from last year’s squad.
The Chargers return only two players from a 2016 team that made the playoffs, won their bi-district match and was one of only two district teams in 3-6A to defeat district champion Keller.
But the team was hit pretty hard by graduation.
Central will compete in the Classic Chevrolet Volleyball Tournament from Aug. 17-19 at Granbury High School, and coach Robyn Wallace said it will be a good chance to get her younger players some time on the court against some pretty good competition.
“There are several good teams in the Granbury Tournament,” Wallace said. “Wichita Falls Rider has a good team this season, and I know that L.D. Bell is up and coming as well. And of course, Granbury is always good.”
Central finished third in District 3-6A last season, upsetting Arlington Martin in the opening round of the playoffs, and Wallace said that even with losing so many starters from last year’s program, she does not have any serious concerns heading into 2017.
“A new year brings a new team with new goals,” Wallace said. “Also, with only two returners, there isn’t much attachment to what happened last year.”
The Chargers do return senior outside hitter Lauren Cox (350 kills, 128 digs in 2016),whom Wallace said “will definitely help lead with her varsity experience,” and sophomore right side hitter Abby Wells, who will “contribute on multiple levels” also.
“Senior Delanie Dennis will play a large role as well,” Wallace said. “We will also look to Jadyn Davis to help lead the defense.”
Regardless of the level of experience of most of the players on the court, Wallace said that what’s important now is for the team to build chemistry and gain experience, and the Central coach said she is pleased with what she is seeing so far.
“Things are going well,” Wallace said. “There has been lots of growth happening over these last few weeks.”