RAYMONDVILLE — As the old saying goes, “The most valuable lessons aren’t taught, they’re experienced.”
Ten months ago when the Raymondville Lady Bearkats walked off the volleyball court at the end of last season, they were defeated and demoralized after coming one win shy of winning the District 32-4A championship.
It was an experience that Raymondville head coach Norma Rodriguez says still drives the team as they prepare for the 2017 season.
“These girls took that loss as motivation for them to evolve into top contenders in District 32-4A,” she said. “There is a great quote by Aerosmith from their song ‘Dream On’ that says ‘you have to lose to know how to win.’ I think that verse rings true with our girls.”
This year, the Lady Kats return five girls that will lead the team heading into the upcoming season. Team captains like Claudia Mesa and Iscela Balzadua will be counted on by Coach Rodriguez while returning varsity players like Briana Soria, Marissa Navarro and Victoria Hernandez will also be looked upon to play a large role.
Nevertheless, Rodriguez is confident her team is ready to compete against the league’s best.
“These girls exert their leadership abilities as well as their physical abilities on the court, which helps the other girls focus more on the improvement of themselves during the game instead of worrying about every single aspect that’s happening on the court,” said Rodriguez.
“With our team captains, the rest of the team knows that they can count on them to lead the way.”
While the season might still be a few days away, Coach Rodriguez has already seen some positive signs from her team.
“I like the fact that the girls are working together as a team,” she said. “I always tell them that they need to work together because it will make them stronger as a team. But we are not perfect and still need to work a lot on our back row.”
The Lady Bearkats continue their preseason schedule today with scrimmages against San Perlita, La Villa, Lyford and 32-3A defending district champions Santa Rosa.