Home Education Lovelady Lions Varsity Volleyball Squad Still Undefeated in District Play 

Lovelady Lions Varsity Volleyball Squad Still Undefeated in District Play 

Lovelady Lions roar through the season undefeated in district play! Pictured left to right Head Coach Haliegh Blount and Seniors Morgan Womack, Kylie Pugh and Makenna Pierce

By Greg Ritchie

Messenger Reporter

LOVELADY – The Lovelady Lion varsity volleyball team came into their match with the Grapeland Sandies 6-0 in district play. The Tuesday, Oct. 11 matchup kept the record alive with a win over Grapeland in all three matches.

Lions’ first-year head coach Haleigh Blount and some of her star senior players sat down with the Messenger before the game to talk about the season so far and plans for the rest of the games. See the full video at the end of this article. We would like to thank our sponsor, Republican Candidate for Justice of the Peace District One Mike McCreight. 

Coach Haleigh Blount 

To what do you attribute your success so far?

“Just the girls working hard and buying into our program. Some of the players have had a new coach every year here at Lovelady. That is really hard. They have just trusted me, trusted the program and trusted each other. We had a hard pre-season and we gained a lot of great insight from that. It was also mentally difficult to overcome – but they did. They bought into our ‘WAR’ culture: Work ethic, Attitude and Resolution.”

How has it been working with Lovelady in your first year here as coach?

“It’s been amazing. They are very supportive. They communicate well. It’s different because there is so much support. It’s been a great experience. All of our coaches have the same mindset: we want to do well and we want the kids to do well. They come first. We want our program to advance – not just this year but next year and the following year. That support is evident through everything, through the boys’ program and the girls’ program.”

What is your philosophy in working with these girls?

“Just to have that consistent expectation. I have a high expectation because I know what they can do. People don’t see our practices. People don’t see their full ability – they just see games. People may not understand: yes, we are winning a game, but maybe we are not playing to the standard to which we should be playing. That’s not good enough. We should be playing ‘our’ game every game. I believe that and I don’t waiver from it.”

What are your thoughts going into the game against Grapeland?

“I have faith about the rest of our district games. If we play how we should play – I am not worried. I know we have a target on our back because we are undefeated. Every team wants to be the first team to beat us. Just like our Latexo game. We were down two sets, but I knew we could win. I had faith and I told the players, ‘I don’t want to just be district champions just because we can be. I want to be undefeated with you. I want our team to be undefeated because we have the ability to do it. There is great competition and some solid teams. I just have faith in my team.”

Senior Morgan Womack 

“Working with the new coach has been a little tough. She is hard on us during practices and games – as a coach should be. I really appreciate the work she has done for us – for putting in her time to help us achieve goals we know we should achieve. ”

Senior Kylie Pugh

“We came in with almost a whole new team – with a new coach and a new perspective of things. I think we have all learned alongside each other. If we play to the best of our ability, then we should have no trouble in district and we should make it into the playoffs. We are playing in new positions and we never would have thought we could do that unless someone pushed us knowing our full potential. I think that goes for life, too. You think you cannot do something until someone else has the confidence and belief in you. You never know what you are able to do.”

Senior Makenna Pierce

“Going into the last game, we were all confident in ourselves. As it went on, we were getting down on ourselves. When coach called the time-out, she lit a fire under us. ‘We cannot lose. We refuse to lose. This is not going to happen.’ We worked harder than ever before. We were a team; we were together. It’s not all about you – it’s about the whole team. If you make a mistake you have to shake it off and think about the next thing. It’s okay to mess up – that’s how you learn. That’s how you grow.”

Watch the full video interview here!

Greg Ritchie can be reached at greg@messenger-news.com