THS tackles tough volleyball neighborhood

golden_wave_tupelo_boys_varsity_baseball_spring_12-13By GENE PHELPS
Daily Journal

Alexis Zosel relishes her role as the setter on Tupelo High School’s volleyball team.

“I like being involved with every play,” said the junior, who has played the position since middle school. “You have to play really smart and be aware of both sides of the court.

“The setter takes the blame for a bad hit,” she added, then laughed. “You have to be mentally tough.”

Lady Wave coach Laurie Bishop says setter is “definitely” the toughest position in volleyball.

“The setter runs the floor for us,” she said. “You’ve got to be quick and smart. You have to know who to set. You have to know where the blockers are at all times.”

Zosel worked her way into the starting lineup during summer league play. She’ll be on the court Friday when the Lady Wave opens its season in the Set It Off Challenge in Ridgeland.

Joining Zosel in the Tupelo lineup are middle blockers Kerrigan Buck, a senior, and Georgeanna Bowen, a junior. The outside hitters are seniors Morgan Hereford and Crystal Coleman. A sophomore, Kaitlyn Wilson, will start at libero.

Bishop is counting on her three seniors – Buck, Hereford and Coleman – for leadership.

“They need to help bring a sense of calmness and leadership to the court,” Bishop said. “We have a new rotation. Very few of these players have played together.”

Tupelo opens its regular-season on Aug. 22 with a home match against New Albany.

The Lady Wave plays in one of the state’s toughest divisions – Class III, Division 1 – against defending state champion DeSoto Central, Hernando, Horn Lake, Olive Branch, Southavem, Starkville and Columbus. good test

The pool-play tournament in Ridgeland will give Bishop an early indication of what to expect from her team.

“We’ll get a look at the rotation we’re working on,” she said. “We’ll get a feel for where we stand. We’ll see how we mesh. We’ll see how they respond when the play gets intense.”

gene.phelps@journalinc.com