By Yousef Hattar – Setting the tone at the beginning of the year and finishing it off strong is the formula for a winning season. The Matoaca girls’ volleyball team is doing just that. With a record of 22-3, the Warriors climbed their way up to a Conference 12 Championship. First-year coach and Conference Coach of the Year Tiara Boyd is proud of what her girls have accomplished and is looking forward to the road ahead.
“These girls have worked very hard toward the goal of making it this far,” Boyd said. “We are still striving to get to the top with great competition coming up.”
Seniors Shaelee Blackham and Jordan Morris, with their experience and leadership, have been a huge part of this team’s success. Blackham (defensive specialist) racked up 3 kills, 21 aces, and 170 digs to go along with an honorable mention for the Conference 12 honors. Morris (DS), on the other hand, tallied 38 kills, 31 aces, 33 blocks, and 132 digs to go along with her second team All-Conference honors.
Teams that are built to win have younger talent supporting them. The Warriors have just that in young standouts Lani Mason, Lindsey Temple, and Makenzy Johnson. Leading the way with 297 kills, 70 aces, 18 blocks, and 128 digs, sophomore outside hitter Mason was honored with the Conference 12 Player of the Year award. Temple and Johnson have also had successful years as they both were given first team All-conference honors and also a part of the Conference 12 all-academic team.
Temple (outside hitter), (168 kills, 99 aces, 11 blocks, and 132 digs) and Johnson (S, 529 assists, 93 kills, 124 aces, 20 blocks, and 70 digs), look to keep this play up throughout the state tournament and the next season.
“With teamwork, dedication, and determination we will continue to work hard and get the job done,” Boyd said.
The Warriors played in the 5A South region tournament this past Monday. Results were available @RVAGameBreak.