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Volleyball team getting set for season
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WCHS senior Bella Cantrell makes an assist during the playday in Manchester. - photo by Taylor Moore
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WCHS senior Juju Pyburn sends the ball over the net during a playday in Manchester under the watchful eye of coach Erin Blalock. - photo by Taylor Moore

The Warren County High School volleyball team is barreling toward its season opener with a preseason playday this coming Saturday in Gatlinburg.

The Aug. 7 playday is called Attack the Rock and the Lady Pioneers will have just over a week to make adjustments after that before the Aug. 16 season-opener in Cannon County.

“I’m looking forward to seeing how the girls play this season,” said coach Erin Blalock. “There are several girls playing new positions so it’s been an adjustment this summer, but I think they are fitting into these new roles very well. We have great leadership in our juniors and seniors this year, and I am hopeful that will take us a long way on the court. We are in a new district so that is an exciting change. We have been playing most of the new district opponents for several years so at least it’s a familiar change.”

Warren County has already competed in a playday, that being in Coffee County. Blalock left the set of scrimmages enthused about the performance of her JV team.

“The JV team performed really well at the Coffee County playday last week,” she said. “It’s made up of most of the sophomore class. They are energetic and always ready to learn and try new skills. They build up the whole team with their energy and encouragement. The JV girls have improved tremendously since last season, so I am excited to see them continue that throughout the season.”

Blalock has also made a commitment to have a full freshman squad to get the girls game experience early.

“Most of the freshman squad are first-year players,” said Blalock. “They are improving every day and that is our focus for them. Many of them are learning volleyball for the first time this summer but they have come a long way since May and I look forward to them keeping it up.  They will have far fewer games this season, due to most schools not having freshman teams, but there are a few on the schedule. We are looking forward to that.”