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THS Volleyball Coach Katie Hayley

Volleyball team opens this week

By Michael Butler

"I am very excited about this upcoming season," Tallassee High School volleyball coach Katie Hayley said. The Tigers open the 2016 season on Aug. 25 at Valley.

"The girls have been working hard preparing for this season since the start of July," the coach noted. "This year's volleyball season will be full of action."

Hayley, along with assistants Sarah Hughes and Jennifer Gilbert will be busy with not just varsity and junior varsity squads but also a middle school program.

"The volleyball program is growing, as we have added back our true middle school (Southside) team this year," Hayley noted. "I believe this is the first time in about four years that we have been able to do this.

"We haven’t had a senior on the volleyball team in thre years, so our number of returning players hasn’t changed. Adding this team will allow our program to develop like it need to. The more we can get these girls on the court, the better."

Hayley added that the varsity and JV teams are "full of talent." There are seven seniors this season; Ashanti Thomas, Karson Stanford, Erin Dunn, Hope Smith, Courtney Collier, Madison Cunningham and Lara Katherine Fomby.

"These senior lady Tigers were my first volleyball group here at Tallassee, and most have been playing all six year. That makes them a special group to me. They have grown, developed and achieved so much over the years; however, they are not satisfied and eager for more.

"Finishing top 16 last year in 5A and falling short of the state tournament last year by one match is definitely a motivation factor this season. We as a group take it one day at a time. Our goal right now is to get better every time we step on the court."

Tallassee in all sports will be competing in the AHSAA's 4A classification.

"Our area will be very competitive with Holtville, Elmore County and Dadeville," said Hayley. "I believe it is going to be a tough battle to come out top two of the area tournament and move on to Super Regionals. We will focus on that when we get there. Right now we will work on getting better everyday and using these regular season matches to prepare."

JV and varsity matches begin at 4:30 on Thursday in Valley.

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