Volleyball: Seniors key for Clear Brook
Clear Brook has been a constant 24-5A playoff qualifier since volleyball started taking four teams to the playoffs in 2006, and Lady Wolverines coach Meredith Thompson looks for her latest group of seniors to keep it going.
"It's a great district to be a part of with several veteran coaches and outstanding programs, and everyone knows each other's coaching style," Thompson said. "That helps, but still, the district is so competitive, and it's a great environment for volleyball."
Clear Brook, Clear Lake, Clear Creek and Pearland have dominated when it comes to postseason berths over the past five seasons. The Lady Wolverines, along with Clear Creek and Clear Lake, are 5-for-5 in 24-5A, and Pearland shares that perfect mark with two of its berths coming in 22-5A in 2008 and 2009.
Alvin (2006) and Dickinson (2008) are the only other 24-5A volleyball teams to break through to the postseason over the past half decade, and even though the Lady Wolverines have a number of newcomers, they're once again among the favorites with Clear Creek, Clear Lake and Pearland.
"It's always been a great race and probably always will be," said Thompson, who has taken Clear Brook to six straight playoffs.
Coming back from last year's 31-18 team that beat Fort Bend Austin in bi-district are senior third-year starters Anita Permenter (outside hitter) and Crystal Young (setter-right side), and senior Darian Lockwood (OH), who started occationally and was in the regular rotation throughout last season.
Clear Brook also has senior lettermen and leaders Desiree Scott (defensive specialist-RS) and Allie Bevolo (DS), and sophomore Chelsea Sinkcox (S-DS) was called up for the 2010 playoffs, but after that, it's all newcomers, and everyone got a good look during the first week of workouts and two home scrimmages.
"We were pleased and we saw some progress," Thompson said, "but there are definitely a lot of things we need to work on, and we're going to try some different combinations in our tournaments and early games."
Among those working their way into the varsity level are Clear Brook juniors Courtney Tee (middle blocker) and Danielle Sellari (DS), and sophomore Jasmine Juliette (MB), and all are expected to see action Thursday through Saturday, Aug. 11-13, at the Westwood Tournament in Austin.
The Lady Wolverines meet San Antonio Reagan at 10 a.m. Thursday, Aug. 11, at Westwood High School in their tournament opener, and also take on Pflugerville and Austin St. Dominic Savio in pool action later that day.
Clear Brook hosts Friendswood at 6:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Aug. 16, and has non-district tournaments at Spring Branch Memorial and Pearland later this month.
The 24-5A opener is at 6:30 p.m. on Sept. 9 at Alvin.
"The district is always tough, and we've heard good things about several teams including Brazoswood, and they're always a little scary because we don't see them very much until we get to district," Thompson said.
Clear Brook finished third behind Clear Creek and Clear Lake to advance in Thompson's first season in 2005, and in the four-team format, the Lady Wolverines placed second in '09, third in '06 and '10, and fourth in '07 and '08.
Clear Creek and Clear Lake have won or shared the 24-5A championship the past seven years since Alvin captured the crown in 2003, and Pearland took back-to-back 22-5A titles in 2008-09.
"Those three are the favorites and we're hopping to be right in there with them by the time district rolls around," Thompson said. "The girls have a great attitude and are working hard on improving in every practice and every game, and moving forward one step at a time."
Local Advertising by PaperG