WINDERMERE — The Windermere Prep girls volleyball team is young.
Well, there are more middle-schoolers (three) than upperclassmen (two; one senior and one junior). And, nearly half of the team is sophomores.
So, when head coach Diego Serpa said his team — which has raced out to a 6-1 record this fall (not including a 3-2 showing at the Lake Highland Prep/Winter Park Invitational Tournament earlier this month) — has a bright future, there’s little reason not to believe him.
“We have very bright future and I’m so happy to have a group like this,” Serpa said following his Lakers’ Sept. 17 win over Legacy Charter, 3-1. “It’s all about attitude. If they bring a good attitude, if they play as a team — they know they can do it.”
That much was apparent earlier in the night, when Windermere Prep stumbled against an improved Eagles squad in the first set before dominating the next three sets en route to victory.
Some of the team’s younger standouts led the way that evening, with Izzy Teixeira (eighth grade) registering seven kills, seven digs and one ace; Peyton Warp (sophomore) putting together 28 assists and 14 digs; Riley Nowicki (freshman) amassing 11 kills, two aces and 15 digs and Natalie Work, a seventh grader, chipping in five kills, an ace and three digs.
Windermere Prep’s lone senior, Alex Lennon, is a captain and the team’s libero.
With such a young group, the Lakers can at times be inconsistent, but Serpa is hopeful experiences such as the LHP/WP Invitational at Orlando Volleyball Academy will help bring his girls along in terms of maturity ahead of more matches against more elite teams.
“The tournament (at OVA) was great competition so it was very important to expose them to good competition,” Serpa said. “To beat those teams … we have to be perfect.”
Although it isn’t entirely surprising the West Orange Warriors (11-1) swept the visiting Evans Trojans last week, 3-0, it was nonetheless a pretty impressive accomplishment when the Warriors put together a perfect third set. Senior Paige Gravely served the perfect 25-0 set for West Orange.
The Olympia Titans went down to South Florida over the weekend to compete in the Chaminade-Madonna Cares Volleyball Invitational and placed third among a competitive field. Johnna Shambley was named to the all-tournament team. Olympia will compete in the Edgewater/Dr. Phillips Tournament at Orlando Volleyball Academy on Friday and Saturday this week. After defeating Cypress Creek on Sept. 22, the Titans are 11-2.
Contact Steven Ryzewski at [email protected].