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Senior leave lasting legacy for Needville

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Senior leave lasting legacy for Needville

Needville senior Alyssa Edwards (1) talks to her teammates during a huddle during Thursday’s 2021 UIL Class 4A State Volleyball Semifinals match against Celina.

GARLAND — The Needville volleyball team featured nine seniors for the 2021 season, and those nine Lady Jays will graduate in the spring.

Over the four years, the Class of 2022 has been a vital cog in the Lady Jays volleyball program.

“(The seniors) mean everything to me,” Needville head coach Amy Schultz said. “My girls keep me coaching.”

A handful of freshmen were called up for the Lady Jays’ last trip to the state tournament in 2018.

“It felt like a full-circle moment,” Ashley Fojtik said. “We kept telling ourselves that everything was so familiar, and I wish we could have used it to our advantage.”

Over the four years, Needville has won 140 matches.

The Lady Jays earned at least a share of three district titles and completed two perfect runs through 25-4A the past two seasons. Needville hasn’t lost a district match since October 2019.

In the past four campaigns, Needville won 15 playoff games, including two regional championships.

The seniors set the tone for Needville, and they knew what it took to win on Thursday during the 2021 UIL Class 4A State Volleyball Semifinals.

The starting rotation includes six seniors with Alyssa Edwards, Fojtik, Sarah Doggett, Yasmyn Ochoa, Maya Scott and Cayla Kozik.

Kozik added her frustration with how the match started for Needville.

“We would have taken control if we had slowed down,” Kozik said. “Everything was such a fast pace in our mind, and we should have taken one point at a time.”

Edwards was the final voice for the Lady Jays before they took the floor on Thursday.

“We just had to fight hard and (Celina) wasn’t going to give it to us,” Edwards said. “We needed to play like it was our last game.”

Edwards added the seniors’ emotions of being left wanting more at state.

“I think we had ups and downs in the game, but we should have fought harder,” Edwards said. “And I think we could have won that match.”

Needville will return nine players for the 2023 season, including Aubrey Chumchal, Skylar Butler, Morgan Moore, Hailey Parker, Mikah Giles, Jessalyn Gregory, Jadeyn Ayers, Sydney Merten and Claire Todd.

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