The girls on the Richmond Hill High School volleyball team will begin their bid for a second trip to the state tournament in three years when they take on Lakeside-Evans on Saturday at 9 a.m. at South Effingham in the first round of the Region 2-AAAA tourney.
The Lady Wildcats (25-10, 6-2) are the south subregion's No. 2 seed behind Glynn Academy. Lakeside-Evans (12-15, 1-4) is the No. 3 seed in the north subregion.
The goal for Richmond Hill's still-young program is to get back to state, coach Ashleigh Davis-Lee said. The team is in its third year of existence.
"It is going to be a challenge with some of the teams on the north side of the region, but we are ready," Davis-Lee said.
The Lady Wildcats performed solidly against a tough nonregion schedule, taking on area powers such as Calvary Day, Savannah Arts Academy, Savannah Christian, Camden County and traditionally strong programs from South Carolina - including Johns Creek, Hilton Head and Bluffton.
"I would definitely give the girls an ‘A,'" Davis-Leigh said. "We have done wonderfully given the teams that we have seen this year. There are few that we would have and could have capitalized on, but overall we are doing what we need to be doing with hopes of moving on to the next level."
Prior to the team's last regular season game against Statesboro, the team's stat leaders included Darre Auna Lyde, who had a team-high 62 aces; Krysten Hardee with 88 kills; Kayla Taylor with 23 blocks and Breanna Cota with 115 digs.
Also, Cota and Nikki Shields had 57 and 51 aces, respectively. Taylor had 84 kills while Cota and Shields had 75 kills each. Shields also had 17 blocks.
Kaitlyn Taylor had 110 digs and Chandler Holmes had 108 digs.
If Richmond Hill wins the opener, the Lady Wildcats play the winner of Greenbrier-Ware County at 11 a.m.