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But for Paris High School junior Jazlyn Pipkins, a summer of preparation has come to fruition as her progress on the court has been noted by many.
“When she is on the court, she truly sets the pace for our offense and defense,” Varsity Volleyball Coach Brittany Maness said. “She has come a long way since last year. It is great to see how her knowledge of the game has developed and how much she has improved in such a short period of time.”
To date, Pipkins averages three blocks and six kills per game, successes she said are a result of patience.
“The most imperative qualities for a successful volleyball player to possess are patience, mental toughness and always keeping in mind that the little things matter — such as being in the right spot, timing the hitter, reading the hitter and keeping momentum up for your team even during hard times in a game,” she said.
“What draws me to volleyball is the mindset you have to have to play it,” she added. “Volleyball is not like any other sport. Other people would just say volleyball is easy, but they don’t understand the importance of this sport.”
Now a leader of the PHS varsity squad, Pipkins’ desired achievements for this season are not short sighted.
“What I hope to achieve throughout this season is to help myself and my teammates to be consistent, to take one play at a time and to keep in our minds that we shall not pay attention to the kind of teams we’re playing; whether they are good, bad, have no excitement or maybe get into our heads a little,” she said. “We just need to play our game, and we will eventually progress into the team my coach believes we can be.”
Volleyball fans can catch Pipkins and the Lady Cats in action on Friday, Sept. 20 as they host Kaufman in the Wildcat gym at Paris High School.