Cedar Ridge, Jordan volleyball unite to honor Lyric Woods

Updated: September 21, 2022

Almost daily, there’s plenty of material that could make someone doubt their faith in the goodness of humanity. It could be a simple glance at violent crime on a news site, or a viral video of a verbal or physical fight from an airport or a service station. Perhaps something in their own workplace.

And then something comes along that restores that faith.

Like what parents at Jordan High School did on Tuesday night.

It has been a tumultuous week across western Orange County. On Sunday afternoon, the bodies of Cedar Ridge freshman Lyric Woods and Eastern Alamance senior Devin Clark were discovered two-and-a-half miles from Woods’ home. Members of the Orange County Sheriff’s Office believe they were shot to death.

While she never suited up for the Cedar Ridge volleyball team, Woods did play with the White Cross Recreation Department, where many of the current Red Wolves players honed their skills during elementary and middle school. Woods hoped to join the junior varsity team for her sophomore season.

After the discovery of Woods’ body on Sunday, Cedar Ridge’s volleyball team released a statement that its Tuesday game against Jordan would be played in memory of Woods.

When the Red Wolves showed up to Falcons Gymnasium in Durham on Tuesday, several Jordan parents were already prepared to honor Woods. They had designed burgundy and grey ribbons, the Cedar Ridge school colors, with an “LW” and her number “34” written in black ink on white laces. The Cedar Ridge and Jordan players wore them on their shoes during the game.

“We started practice this week making sure across the board that the girls knew we’re here to support them,” said Cedar Ridge head coach Fiona Cunningham. “That’s the number one thing we’re focused on this week. Our junior varsity girls took Monday off. They knew Lyric really well. They played travel volleyball with her. It’s been a mixed bag because our girls are trying to continue moving forward, but we’re less than four days out from a tragedy in our community and the players are responding like you would expect.”

Before the match on Tuesday night, there was a moment of silence.

Originally, this week was spirit week at Cedar Ridge since it was the return of a Homecoming football game on Friday night (Cedar Ridge didn’t field a varsity football team in 2021 and held homecoming on a Thursday.) After Woods’ death, those plans changed. On Thursday night for Cedar Ridge’s volleyball match against Person in Hillsborough, fans are encouraged to wear pink ribbons in honor of Woods.

As for the match itself on Tuesday, Cedar Ridge prevailed 3-0 for its 13th straight win. The Red Wolves won on scores of 25-12, 25-10 and 25-19.

Since losing to J.H. Rose in the season-opener on August 17, the Red Wolves (13-1) have won 39 consecutive sets.

On her 18th birthday, senior Cameron Lloyd had 12 kills and 13 digs. Like most of the Cedar Ridge starters, Lloyd didn’t play in the third set. Senior Julie Altieri had eleven assists, two kills, two aces and six digs.

In the third set, junior Rachel Alverson was inserted as the setter while freshman Claire Hargett took over as outside hitter. Hargett finished with six kills while Alverson had nine assists. Junior libero Natasha Buchler-Fosado had an ace and an assist in the third set.

The Red Wolves, who are currently ranked #2 in the MaxPreps 3A East Region behind J.H. Rose, will start the second half of its CCC schedule on Tuesday night when they host Person at Red Wolves Gymnasium. Person and Cedar Ridge met in the CCC Tournament championship game last year, a 3-0 Red Wolves victory.

On August 30, the Red Wolves defeated the Rockets 3-0 in Roxboro.

Cedar Ridge will enter Thursday’s match with 30 consecutive conference wins under its belt. The Red Wolves senior class of Lloyd, Altieri, Cameron Lanier, Anaya Carter and Grace Young now have a career record of 71-10.

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