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Young Lady Patriots have the look of winners

By Staff
Charles Prince, Hartselle Enquirer
Florette – After a 43-14 record last season, it may be a rebuilding season for the Lady Patriots in 2004. Three key seniors from last season have graduated. Two of those, Kristen Bramlett and Caycee Cooper, have moved on to play college volleyball.
Brewer head coach Ron Smith welcomes back three starters from last year's squad, Mandy Martin, Brittany Knighten and Cristen Slate.
Smith believes those three will be team leaders and help a young team grow as the year progresses.
"We've got great senior leadership," Smith said. "This team has a lot of girls with great attitudes."
Smith thinks his team's athleticism can overcome the height the Lady Patriots lack. He is, however, concerned about his team's lack of experience.
"We'll be counting on three sophomores to get playing time," Smith said. "They don't have any varsity experience, so depending on how they perform can do a lot to determine how our season will go. I think we can be good, but when you have players without experience, you're not sure what to expect."
A potential roadblock to a successful season is the Class 5A Area 14 that Brewer has moved into for the upcoming season.
The area includes defending state champion Huntsville, along with Arab and Scottsboro.
Smith is confident Brewer will have a winning season in spite of the change.
"We're moving into a much stronger area than we were in last year," Smith said. "But we should still finish with a winning record."
The Lady Patriots open their season on Aug. 26 when they travel to Arab.
They open home play on Aug. 28 when they host the Brewer Pepsi Invitational.