Pearland to challenge for 23-6A volleyball title

PEARLAND — This time last year, Jamie Gill was adjusting to being the head coach of the Pearland Lady Oilers volleyball team. She was getting to know her players and they were getting to know her and the expectations she had of those players.

Gill, a 2004 Friendswood graduate, has experienced nothing but success as a player and a coach. Gill was a standout for Friendswood as she made three trips to the Class 4A state semifinals while she was in high school in 2000, 2002 and 2003.

She not only came to Pearland as a highly decorated player, but also as a coach and there wasn't any reason not to expect success with the Lady Oilers who had established a highly successful history.

As the team prepares for the 2022 volleyball season, Gill is better acquainted with her players, and they know what the expectations are now.

The team was quick to adapt to Gill last season as they fashioned an impressive 34-13 season record while finishing with a 10-2 district record and a second-place finish behind their cross-town cousin Dawson who won the league title. The Lady Oilers advanced to the second-round of the playoffs, losing a touch match to Deer Park in five sets.

Pearland will use a tough non-district schedule to prepare to challenge for the District 23-6A crown.

They will compete at the tough Volleypalooza in Leander, the Clear Creek ISD tournament, and matches against Fort Bend Ridge Point, Friendswood, and Clear Creek.

There is a strong foundation of players returning for Pearland this season to build on their success last year.

Those returnees include 6-foot, 1-inch sophomore middle blocker Kimmani Rugley (68 blocks); sophomore libero Maddie Dement; senior right-side hitter Madie Whitehead (2.2 kills, 24 aces); senior outside hitter Rachelle Reed; and junior middle blocker Allie Schwartz.

"My kids really want that title, and anything can happen on a given day. Both teams will be good so it should be interesting," Gill recently said. "As far as the playoffs go, I expect to see us in the third round or deeper. That's the goal and the expectation."

2022 Pearland Lady Oilers Volleyball Schedule

                                Round One

Fri        9/9        Shadow Creek          Home    6:30 p.m.

Tue      9/13      Alief Elsik                   Away    6:30 p.m.

Fri        9/16      Alvin                           Away    6:30 p.m.

Fri        9/20      Dawson                     Away     6:30 p.m.

Tue      9/23      Alief Taylor                Home     6:30 p.m.

Fri        9/30      Alief Hastings            Home    6:30 p.m.

                                Round Two

Tue      10/4      Shadow Creek           Away     6:30 p.m.

Fri        10/7      Alief Elsik                   Home    4:30 p.m.

Tue      10/11    Alvin                           Home    6:30 p.m.

Fri        10/14    Dawson                     Home    4:30 p.m.

Tue      10/18    Alief Taylor                 Away     6:30 p.m.

Tue      10/25    Alief Hastings             Away     6:30 p.m.