Roberts, Winter Haven Rise Above Haines City
Tue. September 11, 2012 at 1:21 a.m. | By Solange Reyner
By SOLANGE REYNER
HAINES CITY | For the last three years, Katora Roberts felt like she was head and shoulders above her teammates.
Not because she thought she was more talented but because Roberts, a senior, stands six feet tall.
This year she has better company. At least five players are above 5-foot-8, and that size has helped Winter Haven's volleyball team get out to a 4-0 start.
On Monday, Roberts led Winter Haven past Haines City 25-13, 25-12, 25-12 in a non-district match-up. She had 11 kills and three blocks and Ali Mann, the team's setter, had 18 assists. Katie Baumbach, another hitter, had five kills and 16 digs.
"Years before we were all about passing and setting," Roberts said. "I feel like we have more power this year and we can utilize that."
Roberts' strength was key in the Haines City match, and she certainly stood out when her teammates set her up for a hitting attempt.
"She's very powerful and she understands her role," Haines City coach LaDreda Akins said. "She takes every opportunity given to her."
Winter Haven went on big runs behind Roberts, and reeled off eight points in the third before Haines City scored to make it 17-6.
The Hornets are still trying to find their groove after an offseason with Akins, who is in her first year as the head coach.
"We understand where we need to be," Akins said. "If anybody is going to hurt us it will be us from errors or us not coming to play every game. We have to have that competitiveness in us."
[ Solange Reyner can be reached at (863) 802-7526 or email@example.com ]