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VYPE's Preseason Volleyball Top 20 -- No. 4 The Magnolia Bulldogs
August 13, 2012VYPE MAGAZINE - North Houston
Riding Randall To Promised Land
By Austin Staton
For the last three seasons, the road to clinching the District 17-4A championship has run through Magnolia High School. The 2012 season should prove to be no exception.
After falling to Montgomery in a five-set thriller in the third round of the state playoffs last season, the Bulldogs return three key starters that coach Terri Johnson hopes will catapult the program to reach new heights this fall.
Led by Ohio State-commit OH Kylie Randall, Magnolia possesses another force on the outside with Alyssa Fulgium and sophomore standout setter Morgan Miller.
Randall, a 6-foot-3 righty, is known for her ability to wreak havoc on the defensive blocks as she posted 60 stops and 349 digs in 2011. On the offensive front, she posted 4.5 kills per set and will be the key cog in the Bulldogs’ attack this fall.
Fulgium, a 5-foot-7 versatile OH/S, features a high motor and a drive to win. With the ability to set, attack, and handle the ball on defense, Fulgium dished out 446 assists last fall while recording 242 digs. As a defending first team all-District performer, Fulgium has pledged her commitment to play volleyball at Midwestern State next fall, and could make the transition to a defensive specialist this fall.
In her freshman year as a right side hitter and setter, 5-foot-11 Morgan Miller made an impressive debut for the Bulldogs as she tallied 1.1 kills per set to go along with 43 blocks and 153 kills. Miller has spent the summer competing with USA Volleyball’s girls youth national team and should only improve as she continues to develop her skillset on the floor.
Unlike the 2011 season which saw the Bulldogs preserver through graduating several key seniors, the 2012 squad is loaded with veteran leadership and one of Texas’ best volleyball prospects in Randall. The program has a winning tradition and that will be put to the test in the newly formed District 18-4A as the Bulldogs will be challenged by rivals Montgomery and Brenham as they seek their first berth in the state tournament since the 2008 season.
Can You Dig It?
Veteran leadership goes a long way in building a successful team. With a relatively inexperienced squad due to graduation losses last fall, Magnolia matured throughout the season en route to winning their third-straight district crown. With six seniors on the roster and an influx of young, but experienced talent, the Bulldogs should be a contender for the Region III crown this fall. Watch out for Allison Woods to have a big season as well.