(CEDAR HILL, TEXAS) Jamia Johnson started her high school volleyball career at an incredibly challenging time.
She was a freshman in the summer of 2020 with more than enough talent to play at the varsity level. But she didn’t know any of her teammates, and the sporting world was understandably taking significant precautions.
Sports were returning in the summer of 2020, but with many social distancing rules and guidelines due to the COVID-19 Pandemic.
Cedar Hill’s volleyball season started a month later than originally scheduled. The Lady Longhorns won their first two matches but none after during a season that mostly consisted of district matches.
“I learned a lot from senior Abrielle Jordan – she taught me how to hit the ball and how to be a good teammate,” said Johnson, who was named the District 6A-11 Co-Newcomer of the Year and Second Team All-District as a freshman.
When Jordan – who played Division II Volleyball at Kentucky State last season – and the seniors graduated, it was clearly Johnson’s team.
Under the leadership of new head coach Amanda Blackney, the Lady Longhorns won 20 matches for the first time in five seasons, and Johnson was named Co-Hitter of the Year.
“She’s a huge game changer and an impact player for us,” Blackney said. “She’s well on her way to becoming The District Hitter of the Year. She shows a lot of leadership, and she’s only a junior.”
A Chance To Reach The Playoffs For The 1st Time Since 2018
With last Friday’s 3-0 sweep of Dallas Skyline, Cedar Hill (18-13, 5-6) secured its second consecutive winning season. The Lady Longhorns have a chance to reach the playoffs for the first time since 2018 – when Johnson was a seventh grader at Permenter Middle School.
“Our coaching has really impacted us,” Johnson said. “Making the playoffs would mean so much – from where we started to where we are.”
Cedar Hill defeated Mansfield Lake Ridge (24-16, 6-5) for the first time in program history earlier this month. Both Cedar Hill and Lake Ridge are competing for 6A-11’s fourth and final playoff spot with just two matches apiece remaining in the regular season.
Johnson said next season, Cedar Hill – which has a strong core of Class of 2024 players – will contend for the 6A-11 District Championship. Johnson said she’s considering competing in the Long Jump for the CHHS Track & Field Team this spring and also joining the CHHS Student Council.
She plans to play Division I Volleyball, following the likes of former Longhorns who are currently playing D-I Volleyball – Morghan Chambers (Jackson State), Makenzie Chambers (Central Florida) and Brianna Green (Denver).