It's a new era in more than one way for Niagara Frontier League girls varsity volleyball at Lockport High School.
Town of Tonawanda native and Kenmore West graduate Kim Lockie takes over as the new coach. The team she inherits is appropriately a new one as well, with six Lady Lions starters graduating last spring, including First Team All-NFL players Patti Burdick and Danielle Donorovich.
Lockie, a special education teacher at Anna Merritt Elementary School, inherits a young, but promising team led by senior co-captains Carly Kane and Sarah Mulvey. The rest of the LHS roster features six juniors and five sophomores.
Lockport finished 12-2 in the NFL last season and tied for the championship with Grand Island and North Tonawanda.
Among the key returning players are Brittany Sanford, who had a great season in 2011 and fellow junior Megan Schneider. Lockie said Sanford will move from middle to outside hitter in 2012 and Schneider has been converted to center mid. Also at the net will be junior Sara Franco, one of the school's top girls basketball prospects again this winter.
Three players are currently fighting for the libero starting position, Lockie said. They are Mulvey, junior Melissa Hook and sophomore Brigitte Orton.
“We're young and inexperienced, but we're hard working and we're committed ,” coach Lockie said. “Overall, we're a work in progress.”
Rounding out the Lady Lions' roster are juniors Candace Orton 11 and Kailyn Szymanski; and sophomores Hailey Bechtold, Faith Heal, Jordyn Kwoka and Alyssa Wagner.
The Lady Lions opened their NFL season Friday with a 3-0 loss at Niagara-Wheatfield. Following today's match at Kenmore East, their 2012 home opener is 5 p.m. Thursday against Niagara Falls.
LOCKPORT HIGH SCHOOL
GIRLS VOLLEYBALL SCHEDULE
DATE OPPONENT TIME
9/7 @ N-Wheatfield L-3-0
Today @ Kenmore East 5 p.m.