Battle at the net

Lamar Consolidated junior Cassidy Drapela tips the ball over the Fulshear block.

The 2019 volleyball season was a banner year for Lamar Consolidated with a return to the playoffs and a trip to the area round. But a successful season often leads to changes in the offseason that regularly includes graduation of key seniors.

The Lady Mustangs were no expectation with libero Halle Ham and middle blocker Faith Ojoulape moving on this offseason.

Additionally, the Lady Mustangs lost their head coach Kristen Cavallo, who moved on to George Ranch after welcoming her fourth child this offseason.

Now Yoland Sinegal takes over the program during a pandemic after serving as an assistant and head softball coach previously at Lamar Consolidated.

“It was a challenge,” Sinegal said. “It was a challenge to get the girls up here with COVID at the same time. However, when it got closer to school time in August I was able to get them to come together.”

But the cupboard is far from bare for Sinegal. The Lady Mustangs have a powerhouse returning for her junior season in Cassidy Drapela.

Drapela has already shown she can play all over the floor and now she has to work refining her game.

Additionally, a handful of underclassmen have stepped for the Lady Mustangs.

“(Junior Destinee Farris) has really come on and (junior) Morgyn Sheridan is the most-improved player,” Sinegal said. “She stepped up when we moved her to a new position. Last year she played outside hitter and this year she is playing middle. She is more comfortable. Her blocking with Cassidy and (sophomore Brooke Morris) has been phenomenal.”

The Lady Mustangs will lean on their offense to get back to the playoffs.

“Our servers are very good,” Sinegal said. “ We’re going to have to lean on our hitting and strategy.

Defense and communication are key for the Lady Mustangs to take the next step.

“Defense wins games,” Sinegal said. “If we can get our defense to gel then we can push it to the next level.”

The Lady Mustangs are currently in third place in District 24-5A with a 5-3 record after beating Terry in the Battle of the ’Berg last week.

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