Central Middle School volleyball team wins multiple championships
Published 1:31 am Wednesday, November 1, 2023
They’re part of history now. If you look up the records for Central Middle School in the future, you’ll find the 2023 volleyball team’s name right there, as the first. The team’s hard work this year helped them win both the Western Division Championship and the Southside Middle School Conference (SMSC) tournament.
To be clear, when we’re talking about history, it’s because this is the first time a CMS volleyball team has won both titles. In 2007, the volleyball team came close as they were the Western Division Champions and SMSC tournament runner-ups. The volleyball team finished the season with a 13-1 regular season record with their only loss during the season to Powhatan.
“It’s truly an awesome feeling to bring both titles to Central Middle School for the first time,” said Coach Sandy Mayhew. “Coach Kristin Barton and myself are so proud of the girls and their accomplishments this year. It is something that neither the team nor we will ever forget.”
Mayhew has coached for the CMS volleyball team for the past three years. This year, she and Barton worked with the team starting in August to practice their volleyball skills. As they prepared for the season, the coaches reminded the team that they write their own story for this season. After defeating Mecklenburg and winning the first title, Mayhew told them that their story wasn’t finished yet as they still had the tournament to play and one last chapter to write.
“Coach Barton and I knew that they could do it,” said Mayhew. “They just needed to believe in themselves that they could accomplish it. They went out and wrote the perfect ending to a sensational season.”
Central Middle School, a dedicated team
According to Mayhew, the team this year was dedicated, determined and had the desire to become winners. What set the team apart this year is they worked on their communication and learned to remain calm and confident in stressful situations. Both gave them a great advantage, especially when the games were close.
In the semi-finals of the Western Division tournament, the girls defeated Mecklenburg in three sets. Then, it was time for the team to face Powhatan, their only loss, again for the third time this season. After losing the first game, the girls came from behind in the next two games and won. Both teams battled back and forth in the fourth game before CMS finally took the lead to claim the SMSC tournament title.
The volleyball season for the middle school team is over as the tournament is the finale for SMSC teams. Now it’s time to prepare for the next season as only six of the 15 players are eighth graders moving on to high school next year. The rest are preparing to win both titles again next season.
“With several young players returning next year, they will have to put in hard work to fill the void and the open spots left by this year’s eighth graders,” said Mayhew.