THE 2013 Lady Dragons have achieved a milestone that no other Jefferson volleyball has reached.
After knocking off Calhoun in the second round of the AA state playoffs, The Lady Dragons advanced to quarterfinals and are only a couple wins away from a state championship.
The remaining six teams in the playoff will be reseeded by the GHSA this week based on their performances. The number-one and number-two seed will have a bye, while the other four teams will battle it out for a shot at the semifinals.
The Lady Dragons do not yet know who their opponent will be, but the match will be Saturday at the higher seeded team’s home gym.
Jefferson’s road win over Calhoun on Tuesday was likely an emotional win for the Lady Dragons, as the Yellow Jackets were the team that eliminated the Dragons in the same round last year.
Junior Lady Dragon Daniela Franco recalled last year’s defeat by Calhoun as a tough pill to swallow.
“It was an intense game last year,” said Franco. “It was really emotional. The seniors that we’d been playing with were suddenly gone and reality finally hit.”
This year’s team gets to hold on to its lone senior for at least another game.
Mallory Goodenow knows her tenure as a Lady Dragon will soon end, but she’s more than thrilled with the successful season and the chance to go out on top.
“It’s really exciting,” said Goodenow. “It’s going to be bittersweet. I just hope we can keep winning. Every game could be the last game.”
After a 3-0 (25-6, 25-13, 25-5) win over Toombs County last week and a 3-0 (25-8, 25-17, 25-21) sweep of Calhoun on Tuesday, the Dragons improved to 33-11 on the season
The other five teams still in the playoff hunt are Westminter, Kendrick, St. Vincent’s, Lovett and the Dragon’s area rival, Wesleyan. The Lady Dragons are 0-2 against Wesleyan this season and would likely relish an opportunity to eliminate the Wolves.
The pressure of the post season is mounting, but Jefferson head coach Mike Paul is trying to keep the atmosphere relaxed around practice.
“We’ve been very loose,” said Paul. “We are just approaching (each round) as just another high school game in another high school gym. Being loose is a good thing.”
The Lady Dragons were seeded number-five will travel to St. Vincent's Academy in Savannah on Saturday (Oct. 26) to face the number-four seeded Saints in the quarterfinals of the Class AA state playoffs.