By Beth Cox
Coach Dottie Phipps is very proud of how both her 7th and 8th-grade teams are doing at the beginning of the volleyball season. Phipps states her girls have been practicing hard and was ready for Tri-Cities Christian on Thursday as they traveled to Blountville to take on the Eagles.
The eighth-grade varsity team fought a hard match against Tri-Cities Christian. It was a nail biter until the end; with the Lady Longhorns pulling off their first conference win of the season. With eleven players returning, Phipps felt the experience and closeness of her team made the biggest impact on the outcome of this hard-fought match.
Shawna Arnold provided was a key component as well. The capable player made ten points at the service line, which helped ease the Lady Longhorns over the Eagles. Phipps liked what she saw in her team, “they work so well together as a team. They communicate well with each other, and that makes a
big difference in how they play.”
The seventh-grade team also played Tri-Cities Christian winning easily over the Eagles with a 25-7 and 25-9 win.
Malea Leonard provided 13 points to help capture the first conference win for the Lady Longhorns. Phipps feels their strength this year is in their serves. The veteran coach explains, “we have a lot of girls that do a remarkable job at the service line, so we are just going to take it one point at a time.” Phipps added, “My new assistant Amy is doing a great job this year, and we are just having a fun time watching these girls improve in every practice.” She concluded, “it is going to be a great season, and everyone should come out and support our Lady Longhorns.”
The JCMS volleyball team will have a busy week as they take on KACHEA on Monday afternoon with eight-grade starting at 5:00 followed by the seventh grade. They travel to Cedar View on Tuesday but back at home on Thursday.
The JCMS is a part of the Blue Ridge Middle School Conference; the teams in the conference are Providence Academy, Cedar View Christian School, KACHEA, and Tri-Cities Christian. It will be a tough season for the Lady Horns, but Phipps is confident her girls will lead in the conference.