Zarina London, a junior middle-hitter for the Ocoee High varsity volleyball team, registered eight kills and played a big role for the Knights in a sweep (25-18, 25-15, 25-17) of the Evans High Trojans Aug. 20. The game was the first of the season for Ocoee, which was defeated by West Orange later in the week and is currently 1-1.
How excited is the team for this new season — and to have opened it with a victory?
I think, based on last season, we were really excited to work harder and execute the plan better than we did last year. The win (against Evans) was really good — it felt really amazing. It’s sparked something in us to work harder for our next games.
How would you measure success this season?
It doesn’t matter about winning; it’s just about how hard we work for it. Even if we lose, as long as we go down working hard for it. Communication and trusting each other is an important thing we need and something we’ve been working on a lot this year, so I think we’ll be very successful.
How long have you been playing volleyball, and why do you enjoy the game?
I’ve been playing for six years. I started playing because I moved a lot, so it was easier to get affiliated with where I was at. It’s fun, because it’s a quick-paced game. I like to talk, and you’re forced to talk (on the court).
Which teammate is the funniest?
Japhia Robinson. She’s very happy — she doesn’t really get down — and she makes sure that I always have a smile on my face before every game.
What are some games you are looking forward to?
Senior Night, because our seniors are going away, and I want them to have a good game. Our “Pink Out” game for breast-cancer awareness, too. I’m excited for any home game — we get lots of support. I like when our school comes out.
You run the 400-meter race for the Ocoee track team. Why do you enjoy that event?
It forces you to be strong. I used to run the 100- and 200- (meter dashes), but then my coaches realized I had potential to run a longer race. They suggested the 400 and, since then, I’ve loved it.
Do you want to go to college?
I want to go to college, most definitely. I want to be an engineer — probably a civil engineer. I like numbers, and my brother (Lincoln London Jr.) influenced me. He’s in college for civil engineering.
Do you have a favorite show on Netflix?
“Orange is the New Black” — it’s so funny and there are a lot of episodes, so I can binge-watch it.
Who has been a role model for you?
My stepmom, Christi McRae. She’s one of those people who is selfless, and she did a lot of stuff for me that she didn’t have to do.