The 2004 volleyball season begins at 6:30 p.m., Aug. 27, in Wilson Dome where the Lady Longhorns take on the Blue Ridge Yellow Jackets in a controlled scrimmage.
Coach Arnold Stonebrink will use the scrimmage to evaluate his players and decide on a starting lineup and player rotations before the regular season begins Aug. 31 in Wilson Dome against Glendale Independence.
In Stonebrink's first-ever varsity team is a solid nucleus of seven seniors who say they are confident they have the talent to contend for the Grand Canyon region title.
"We have great attitudes and I think we are going to be real good," Rikki Ray predicts.
The other seniors are Brandi Whomble, Retosha Marshall, Celena DeSchaff, Tina Jackson, Britney Owens and Haylee Huff.
After signing on as head coach, Stonebrink said he wouldn't make any huge changes in game strategy from what was used by his predecessor Chris Schwind.
One change he has mulled over, however, is possibility using a two-setter offense rather than one as Schwind did. It was the outstanding performance of sophomore Brooke Cannon during summer league played that prompted the coach to consider the switch to two setters.
Stonebrink anticipates little difficulty in making the transition from an eighth-grade coach, as he was last season in Pine, to the head coach of a varsity program.
"There will have to be more emphasis on winning," he said. "But that doesn't mean I will be a die-hard who says the team has to win no matter how miserable the players are. (My goal is) to have the players work their tails off, enjoy the game and have fun."