Lady Bulldogs turning things around

The Zephyrhills Girls’ Volleyball team has posted the best start in a decade and has more wins already this season than it has in the last four seasons.

The Bulldogs are currently 2-3 on the season. The two wins already eclipsed the victories for each of the past four seasons. The Bulldogs had three seasons with just one win and winless in another.

Win No. 2 came Thursday night with a 3-0 sweep of Patel of Tampa with game wins of 25-21, 25-23 and 25-14. The Bulldogs first win of the young season was a 3-1 win over Academy at the Lakes.

“This is a group of girls buying into wanting to win and wanting to improve each time they touch a ball,” said head coach Emily Frazer. “We are already in the history of Zephyrhills better than the last ten teams.”

The recipe for success is tremendous senior leadership capping off a core of incredibly talented underclassmen. The seniors on the squad are Bryanna Omalley, Mikalah Geiger, Jade Pickett and Tori Perez.

“The senior leadership is really great,” Frazer said. “This team has leaders in each class. It makes it work as a team. It’s not your seniors running your court, it’s everybody working together.”

Returning juniors Payton Leidy, Sabrina Calhoun and Tessa Starnes provide valuable experience on the court. Sophomore Bailee Hitchner is back after an impressive freshman campaign. She is joined by fellow sophomores Laila Woolfolk, Hannah Helms, Alleaona Searight and Ryleigh Hoover.

The biggest surprise is the arrival of super freshman power hitter Zharia Alleyne. The 5’-9” newcomer has become a force on the outside.

“”She is a raw and up-and-coming player.” Frazer said. “As a freshman, there’s room to go, but so much room to blossom. By the end of the season, she is going to amaze people and everybody in this county will know who she is.”

The Bulldogs are back in action Sept. 14 at Sunlake and then return home Sept. 20 against Cypress Creek.

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