The Morgan Academy Lady Senators face off against Pike Liberal Arts School during a game at home last season. The Lady Senators begin practice Tuesday with a goal of returning to the state final four after missing it last season, the year after winning a state championship in 2010. -- File photo

Lady Senators aim for trip back to Final Four as practices begin

Published 9:25pm Monday, July 23, 2012

As the Morgan Academy Lady Senators volleyball team returns to practice on Tuesday, it’ll be looking to return to the top.

The Lady Senators return to practice on Tuesday to prepare for the upcoming season, and head coach Jennifer Moore said the overall goal is a return to the Alabama Independent School Association Final Four — a destination they’d become accustomed to before an absence last season.

Moore said she’s got to keep her team focused and will rely in part on senior leadership to do so.

“I Just have to keep them focused on achieving those goals and smaller goals like winning important games, such as the area games and region games,” Moore said. “I’ve got five seniors this year, and I just let them know that it’s their last chance and if they want to go to the Final Four and possibly win a state championship, they’ve got to do it now.”

Moore’s team will include 28 players —14 on varsity and 14 on junior varsity — and she’ll be able to have a junior high team that will include the team’s seventh and eighth graders.

She added this week’s practices on Tuesday and Wednesday will have the team working on the basics.

“Tomorrow [Tuesday] will be a lot of skills. We’ll do passing drills and incorporate that into practice, especially with the JV. They’ll be doing a lot of scrimmaging since I have enough of them to scrimmage,” Moore said. “And I’ll put them, as well as the varsity, in game situations because that’s the best way to practice is to make things as much like a game as you can, so you’re more prepared for the games when they come.”

The Lady Senators have also gotten a jump start on preparing for this season, as they attended a team camp in Troy last week, and Moore said she’s learned some things that the team will implement this season.

“At those camps you do a lot of competition — you’re playing against other individuals or other teams that come in,” Moore said. “And you just learn to play together and you also learn some skills. I, for example, learned some different stuff because the game is always changing. Like, we’re going to put a new blocking system into our game this year and I’ve learned that we need to work on passing a lot more in practices.”

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