BREWER – Sixteen months removed from a mid-pandemic move from California to Maine, Brewer’s Drew Johnson is shattering it on the volleyball court. She leads the Witches with 158 kills (according to MaxPreps, that's the most in the state) and 134 digs (6th in the state).

The senior also will lead the 4th seeded Witches (9-5) against 13th seeded York (5-8) in the first round of the Class B playoffs on Saturday, Oct. 23.

Johnson came to Maine in June of 2020 during the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic from Pismo Beach, a small town on the central coast of California located four hours north of Los Angeles.

"It was definitely a culture shock," said Johnson after a recent practice. "But it was a good culture shock because everyone up here is nice."

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Johnson, unlike many of her teammates in Brewer who start playing competitive volleyball as freshmen, grew up around volleyball.

"It was definitely an adjustment," said Johnson on adjusting to Maine volleyball. "But I liked how everyone here wanted to learn how to play and wanted to advance to the next level like it kind of is in California."

"She has been around volleyball players, so she has that maturity," said Brewer coach Rich Nutter.

Nutter hopes the experience from one of his captains can pay off starting on Saturday at noon when the Witches host York in the first round of the playoffs. Many of the Witches lack experience in big games with no playoffs last season due to COVID.

"There wasn’t the pressure for a state championship like we have this year where everybody is in the playoff,” said Nutter. “Her experience is going to pay off I think."

Matthew Cunha

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