A year ago, the Greenbrier volleyball team headed into the area tournament in the thick of a rivalry with Lakeside and Evans. The only problem was that the Lady Wolfpack were approaching the most important part of the season without one of its team leaders: junior Kelsey Sheron.
"It was so hard. It was the first time since ninth grade I had to play without her," teammate Amanda O'Neal said.
Sheron's junior season came to an early end when she tore her ACL during a match against Evans. Greenbrier went on to win the Area 2-AAAA Tournament, but didn't get past the state sectionals.
"It was horrible. I just sat there and watched. I couldn't even practice," Sheron said.
After knee surgery in late October, Sheron made a full recovery and, along with O'Neal and the rest of her Lady Wolfpack teammates, will once again compete in the Area 2-AAAA Tournament on Saturday at Evans.
As was the case last year, Greenbrier will come into the tournament as the north subregion's No. 2 seed. The difference, however, is that Sheron is back and O'Neal is a more experienced player.
"Those two girls are the keys to our success," Greenbrier coach Debbie Born said.
"Kelsey - I'm just thankful to have her, period ... Amanda doesn't get the recognition she deserves. I think she leads the team in just about every statistical category we have," she said.
Together, the seniors have led the Lady Wolfpack to a 27-10 record entering Tuesday's nonregion games. The 10 regular-season losses are more than the 2005 and 2004 Greenbrier volleyball teams gave up, but all but two losses came from ranked teams.
Four of those losses came against Evans. The Lady Knights will be the host team in this weekend's area tournament.
"We're coming for Evans," Sheron said. "I feel like we're one of the best squads Greenbrier's ever seen. We don't have one stand-out star. All-around, we're the best as a team."
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