By Tamas Mondovics

VolleyballhitStarting off with three straight wins, the Newsome High School girls varsity volleyball team got the boost it needed to turn in a season much different from last year’s  performance.

While the Wolves strong opening was followed by a couple of losses, first to Plant then conference leader Bloomingdale, the early three-game winning streak seems to have been  enough for the girls to know that the team has both talent and the desire to succeed.

“We are having a great, solid season,” said Wolves senior setter, Catherine Rayburn.

Newsome shares its Class 8A District 7 line up with current conference powerhouse  Bloomingdale, a program which has been enjoying one win after another, followed by Wharton, Plant, Alonso and Riverview.

On the heels of another four-game winning streak, the Wolves, led by senior captains Rayburn and her team mates McKenna Smith and Rachel Llewellyn, took on Riverview and won its away conference match by a score of 3-1.

Second-year program head coach and math teacher Mike Shaffer spoke highly of his team and the girls’ desire to prove that theyVolleyballOne are ready to compete.

“This is a much better season for us than last year,” Shaffer said and, emphasized that while the girls are competing in a tough district they have plenty to bring to the court.

“We have seven seniors, plenty of experience and great leadership, all of which helps to overcome setbacks or game losses,” Shaffer said.

While working on defense, the Wolves are focusing on improving and coming together from every angle in order to be ready when it really counts.

“Our goal is to be ready for districts at the end of October,” Shaffer said.

To that end, Shaffer mentioned that he is encouraging his players to focus, which was to come in handy as the team was getting ready to take part in the annual HCC Lady Hawks Invitational.

“We look forward to this event as it puts more pressure on, keeps the energy up and gets the team battle tested,” he said.

Newsome is yet to face off Bloomingdale and Wharton for round two, confident of a strong finish.

For more information about the Wolves, visit www.maxpreps.com.