LAKE WORTH- Trinity Christian's varsity volleyball team will look a lot different in 2019 as they welcome a new head coach and 12 new players to the roster.
Last Year: The Warriors started the season 1-4, but ended up with a record of 11-13 once they hit their stride. TCA was 4-4 in district play and picked up a pair of big wins over local rival Santaluces.
Who's Back: Senior Christiana Caudillo is the lone returning letter-winner from last year's squad. She will be expected to be a leader on the floor and a key back row player.
Who's New: Almost everybody. The newcomers are loaded with talent, however, as a number of club players join the mix for Trinity. 5'10" hitter Gianna Basileo is just an eighth grader, but could become one of the best front row players in the district this season. 5'11" junior Hannah Alley and 5'9" freshman Katelynn Ruh will help bring size and blocking ability to the front of the Warriors attack. Eighth graders Sofia de los Mozos and Sarah Richardson played club together and will both set for TCA. Eighth graders Hannah Robertson and Sammantha Monier are both talented all-around players who will immediately contribute at the varsity level. After a year off, junior Mikayla Caraballo returns to play the libero position. She should help the Warriors all over the floor. Sophomore Caitlyn Graham is another strong all-around player who may be able to play both front and back row. Freshmen Valeria Gonzalez and Gigi Licamara will play with the JV as well as the varsity and will find spots to contribute.
Changing of the Guard: After several years of coaching the varsity, Amanda Manke will serve as Director of Volleyball for TCA and will coach the middle school team. Merlin Theleus, director of Wizards Volleyball Club, moves up from the JV ranks to lead the varsity team. A great teacher of fundamentals, Theleus will be a strong fit for this young and talented team.
Games to Watch: The season opener at home against Highlands Christian (8/22) should give TCA fans an idea of what this team is capable of in 2019. HCA defeated Trinity 3-1 last year, but the teams look a lot different this fall. While the first game of the season is usually not an indication of what a team will look like in October, the Warriors talent should shine through from the start. Other games to watch will be Trinity's match up at rival Lake Worth Christian (9/17) and the games in the Palm Beach Classic (played at Trinity on 9/27 and 9/28).
The District: Trinity competes in Class 2A, Region 4A, District 13. The six teams in the region are TCA (11-13 in 2018), Atlantic Christian (1-15 in 2018), Berean Christian (4-10 in 2018), Glades Day (7-8 in 2018), Pine School (11-13 in 2018), and Lake Worth Christian (21-9). LWC appears to be the team to beat as they return several key players from last year's district champs. Pine also had a young team last year and is a darkhorse in the district. Trinity certainly has the talent to compete and should be in the top half of 4A-13 with a very high ceiling both in 2019 and in the future.
Overview: This will be a fun, talented team for Warriors fans to watch as they grow. The sky is the limit for this group if they continue to develop and stay together.