The Summit volleyball team is coming off of a season in which it advanced to the bi-district round of the playoffs and coach Linda Alfaro said her team wants more in 2014.
The Lady Jaguars return some key starters from last year's playoff team, and Alfaro said that things appear to be shaping up well for this season.
“We feel pretty good about getting started,” Alfaro said. “We've got a good amount of starters and a great deal of experience coming back and some great kids. I'm excited, and that is the biggest thing for us is we're excited to get going, just to see how we're going to do.
“I feel like the girls have worked very hard this summer preparing for this season and hopefully we can be on the right track.”
Alfaro said that the objective for this year is to improve upon last year's showing, and she thinks the team could do that if it manages to avoid some of the injuries that plagued it last season.
“Last year, we got beat in the first round of the playoffs, and we want to go further than that,” Alfaro said. “We had a couple of injuries last season that really hurt us in the long run. It really showed when we got into the playoffs, just because we had a lot more inexperience on the court.”
Key returners for the Lady Jags this season include libero Courtney Anderson, middle blocker Arianna Baker, and hitters Xariah Williams and Lejla Camdzic.
Key losses for Summit include setter Sarah Williams, but the team does return five starting players.
Summit will be in a new district, but with the addition of fellow school district rival Timberview being the only major change, Alfaro said she does not really feel realignment will affect her team that much.
“It's about the same,” Alfaro said. “It really didn't hurt us, because Timberview has always been a rival, and it will be good to have them back in our district. I don't think it hurt us. It was really more of a stay-the-same.”
Alfaro anticipates Waxahachie and Red Oak as being Summit's two most district opponents this season, but added she expects big challenges from all of the Mansfield schools as well.
In order to improve upon the success Summit enjoyed last season, Alfaro said it will take a couple of things from her players.
“It's going to depend a lot on how healthy we stay and the leadership of our seniors,” Alfaro said. “We also need to stay positive. I feel that talent-wise, we have some really good kids. Now it is just a matter of finding our potential.”