Lamar volleyball is coming for revenge to open up the 2022 season
MERIDIAN, Miss. (WTOK) - The revenge tour starts now for the Lamar Raiders.
Last season the Raiders finished as the state runner ups at the MAIS 5A state championship in Jackson, Mississippi. They lost, what would have been their first state championship in program history, to Madison St. Joe. in a four set battle.
“To be able to comeback next year bigger and badder and more mature and more experienced it’s going to be a really exciting time for Lamar volleyball,” said head coach Courtney Schimelpfening after the Raiders loss on October 14, 2021.
But that, “Exciting time,” is here now. Lamar will open the season against Madison St. Joe on Tuesday.
“She [coach Schimelpfening] would put them [St. Joe] as our first game of the season,” said senior middle blocker, Carley Rolison.
The Raiders get to start the season off going against the same opponent they ended their season to last year. Earlier in the 2021 season, Lamar did beat St. Joe. So the state championship game was a redemption game for the Bruins. This time, it’s the Raiders seeking revenge.
Sophomore outside hitter, Caroline Fruge, said, “I wouldn’t want to start off the season with any other game.”
“I thought that this year kind of being our redemption year, coming back from the runner up state championship, I just felt it was really necessary to go back out there with a little bit of a chip on our shoulder,” said Schimelpfening. “A little bit of redemption on our minds and to come out strong and to tell the other team like we might of come in second last year but that’s not the plan this year.”
Senior, Ava Temple said, “IT’s just a redemption game. We want to- we’ve worked so hard this summer and we just feel like we want to show everyone how far we’ve come and how much progress we’ve made.”
It’s been 291 days since that state championship game but to Lamar, it feels way more recent than that.
Rolison said, “It feels like it was yesterday. Like I remember every play.”
“I watch that game often and I think about that game probably everyday so it doesn’t feel like it was that long ago,” said Schimelpfening.
Some keys to their team this year are going to be their veteran leadership. The Raiders did not lose a single player from last season and they come in with four seniors, Ava Temple, Kaylee Brown, Kaylee Rolison and Harleigh Gray.
Lamar also had three players make the preseason all MAIS list which included West Lauderdale transfer and senior, Kaylee Brown, senior Carley Rolison, and sophomore Caroline Fruge. Coach Schimelpfening enters her fourth year as the head coach and the leads the Raiders into their fourth year as a program on the campus.
The Raiders travel to St. Joe on Tuesday. Game time is set for 6:30 p.m.
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