The Lady Hawks Volleyball Team Begin Their 2023 Campaign

The Lady Hawks Volleyball Team Begin Their 2023 Campaign

After earning another post-season trip in 2022, the 2023 Lady Hawks will have some big holes to fill. The 2022 Hawks roster saw six players leave for the NCAA and one for the German professional league. 

The 2023 Hawks must replace a decorated group of outside hitters. “Outside hitters carry a lot of weight,” explained Head Coach Gary Larkin. “They must attack, block, receive, defend, and serve. We know replacing them will be a challenge, but we are excited about the potential of our freshmen.”

The Lady Hawks will welcome three new players from Florida, two from New Zealand, one from Serbia, and one from Iowa.

“We feel good about the experience of our setters, middles, and liberos,” said Larkin, “so their experience will help our pin hitters adjust to the new roles.”

The Lady Hawks will play a robust schedule often playing three times in a week.  In addition, they will host one tournament and travel to another as well as participate in a few tri-matches. “We knew this roster would benefit from playing experience,” said Assistant Coach Danielle Priest. “After some time to gel, we will be very different in October.”

As for the incoming class, traveling to Tampa from New Zealand was no easy feat. When asked about the move to the US, Kiwis Tasia Clarke and Cathy Porter noted that they have enjoyed the many differences. Even small errands can be a challenge though, and they explained that even finding items in the grocery store can be difficult. Regardless, they seem to be soaking it all in.

“It is natural to miss home in the beginning, but now we are so busy with our team," said Tasia. “The day flies by.”

Cathy added, “Even though the language is the same, there are heaps of differences between the two countries. It’s fun to be a part of it instead of just watching it on American sitcoms.”

Assistant Mada Bajare chimed in. “This team is a sitcom,” she laughed. “We have some crazy personalities, and they seem to be getting along really well.”

The team began training together on August 1st. The preseason days can be long and grueling as they include strength and conditioning, court training, yoga, film study, sports performance discussions, and of course recovery. 

HCC will play its first match on the road at Lake Sumter on August 19th. The players are excited for the start. We hope our fans are too. Fans may find our schedule at, and all home matches are live streamed on the HCC Athletics YouTube page. 

Stay tuned for player profiles and player highlights, and come out and support your 2023 HCC Lady Hawks Volleyball Team!