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grad leads TVCC into first volleyball season
Special to The Monitor
ATHENSThe 2010 volleyball season will be historic at Trinity Valley Community College. It is the first one.
But dont expect the Lady Cardinals to be content with just being a footnote when the history of the colleges athletic program is written. They have designs on being a far more significant entry.
Our goal is to make the regional tournament, Coach Tosha Spain said.
A Eustace High School graduate, Spain assumed responsibility for building the TVCC program in the spring after a successful three-year stint as head volleyball coach at Athens High School, where she posted a 65-48 record.
The conference is tough and we know it will be a hard road, but we believe we can do it, Spain said.
The Lady Cardinals were scheduled to begin their maiden voyage Friday night at the Brookhaven College Invitational Tournament in Farmers Branch, where they also were scheduled to play Saturday.
Monday, Aug. 30, the Lady Cardinals will experience another first when they host Eastfield College at Cardinal Gym. Game time is 6 p.m. for the historic home opener.
We are looking forward to getting the season started and seeing just where we are as a team, Spain said. And, we are really excited about our first home game. I hope we have a big turnout for what will be a special game.
Spain said the 12-member Lady Cardinal roster is starting to take shape as the season opener nears.
Slowly but surely we are getting there, Spain said. They are working hard and have done all I have asked of them.
Being a team of freshmen (except for one), they have a lot to prove on this level. They are a great group of kids.
The lone Lady Cardinal sophomore is Jasmine Scott. The 6-0 native of Baton Rouge, La., played last year at Pensacola Junior College in Pensacola, Fla. Scott will also play for the Lady Cardinal basketball team this season.
To achieve their goal of qualifying for the regional tournament, the Lady Cardinals must finish in the top four in the conference, where they will battle pre-season Top 15s Blinn and Panola, Paris, Navarro, Tyler and Lon Morris also a first-year program.
Blinn, Panola, Navarro and Paris were the regional qualifiers last year. Blinn won the national title in 2008.
The Lady Cardinals are scheduled to begin conference action Sept. 30 at Panola.
Among the players who will be hoping to climb the depth chart are a pair of former standouts at Henderson County high schools. Gentry Garrison (Malakoff) and Jenny McConathy (Eustace) both factor into Spains plans.
Gentry is really coming along, Spain said. She will see a lot of playing time. As a setter, she plays the most complicated position in your system and she is doing a good job of understanding things.
Jenny is a very good athlete and is doing a good job at making adjustments for this level, Spain said.
Spain, who was a standout player at both Navarro and Texas A&M-Commerce after a stellar career at Eustace High School, said the task of building a program from the ground up has been a great experience.
I have loved it, Spain said. Its been new for all of us and very exciting to be a part of history.
Monitor Photo/Kerry Yancey
This weekend, the Lady Panthers were scheduled to play in the Tyler Invitational
volleyball tournament before returning home Tuesday, Aug. 31, to host 4A John Tylers
Lady Lions, opening with 4:30 p.m. sub-varsity matches.
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