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Pike Lib JV heads to state

Published 11:00pm Thursday, October 10, 2013

The Pike Liberal Arts Lady Patriots JV volleyball team has qualified for the AISA AAA state volleyball tournament this Saturday in Alabaster at Kingwood Christian School.

Eight teams will compete for the state title. The Lady Patriots enter the tournament with a 7-7 overall record and finished second in their region behind Macon-East.

Pike coach Craig Kennedy said that he views the state tournament as a “great reward” for his squad. “These girls have worked as hard as any JV team that I have been around,” Kennedy said. “They came out this summer at one every day. They were out in the heat tossing tires around. I’ve never had a team that worked as hard at conditioning.”

Kennedy also said that his team will look a little different than most of the other teams in the tournament. “Everybody on the JV team plays,” Kennedy said. “Every girl passes, sets, hits, and serves. And everyone plays equal time.”

With every girl seeing playing time, Kennedy has noticed a tremendous improvement since the beginning of the season. “Some kids didn’t even know where the lines were when they came out here,” Kennedy said. “The growth has been astronomical. The girls have really learned how to work as a unit.”

Kennedy described the JV team as a tool for preparing players for the varsity squad. “With the JV, we work strictly on the fundamentals,” Kennedy said. “Just the basic rules of the game are very important for the girls to learn.”

Kennedy’s strategy of building a program from the bottom up is already paying dividends for the Lady Patriots. Two JV players, Maya Terry and Danielle Brown, move up to the varsity squad following their JV match.

The Lady Patriots will look to capture a state title in Alabaster this Saturday. Pike’s first match is set for 9 a.m.

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