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Payne ready for strong volleyball season

Miranda Payne had a breakout season this year on the softball diamond, but now she's ready to play the sport she loves the most.
Payne is a four-year starter on the JCHS Volleyball Team and a solid middle hitter for the Lady Longhorns.
Though Payne led the Lady Longhorn softball team in batting average this season, her true love is playing for the JCHS Volleyball Team.
This is a sport Payne and the Lady Longhorns work very hard at.
“Everybody knows the softball team works their butts off, but the last two years our volleyball team has been the other team that has worked hard so hopefully we'll work hard and be good. This year is the year is we're supposed to be good.
“We started in May and we worked twice a week all the way through June. Then we had two weeks off in the dead period and then we resumed and it's always been the entire group there. We've worked really hard in the off-season.”
Payne felt dissatisfied after the softball season was over about not making regionals, so she wants to have no regrets about what the volleyball team is going to do.
Payne wants to see this team reach its full potential.
“Last year we were so close to beating Sullivan East and Sullivan East is a team you want to be compared to,” Payne said. “We were so close to berating them in the tournament and this year I believe we could.”
Payne, whose parents Mike and Renee Payne have always been by her side along with her brothers, Michael and Wesley, has learned from her family how to be a leader and this year in volleyball she will have the opportunity to be one and encourage the younger girls.
Payne says she's also learned from what other people have done and she will know what to do.
“Last year we didn't have the leadership we needed, but this year between me, Shannon Main and Priscilla we'll have good senior leadership and we'll get everything done like we need it to be done.”
One thing about Payne is she's trying to include the younger players into their lives and to make them feel part of a team.
“The seniors are getting to know the freshmen better and we already know the sophomores,” Payne said. “We try to get to know everybody and be nice to them. We're not mean.”
Payne knows how urgent her senior year is and she plans to take full advantage of every opportunity.
“This is my senior year and I know any game could be my last so I have to do everything I can,” Payne said. “Playing softball is great, but volleyball comes first.”