In a hard-fought battle to claim the District 6-AAA volleyball crown, the Lady Hurricanes of East Hamilton settled in after losing the second set and claimed the championship with a 3-1 victory over Bradley Central at Ooltewah Tuesday night.
“We are one step closer to the state tournament. I'm very proud of our team,” said Lady 'Canes head coach Antonela Tomic. “We had some adversity and made some adjustments after the set we lost. It was a team effort. I'm very proud of them very, very proud.”
The Lady 'Canes won set one, 25-18, before falling in the second set by a score of 25-22. From there East Hamilton took control of the night scoring 25-16 and 25-13 victories to claim the championship.
“I wish we would have stayed with them in the two sets where we let the errors kind of get the best of us and change our attitude a little bit and and kind of took it with us down the hole,” said Bearettes head coach Christie McElhaney.
The Lady 'Canes reached the championship match eliminating The Howard School in straight sets to open the tournament. The Bearettes ousted Ooltewah 3-1 to claim a spot in the championship match.
The fight was on early in the first set as the Bearettes opened a quick 5-1 lead. East Hamilton cut it to 8-7 before Bradley recovered to stay out front 12-9. The Hurricanes regrouped to score eight of the next 10 point to move ahead 16-13 and pushed the margin to 20-15 minutes later and led 23-16 before closing out the set one win.
Set two belonged to the Bearettes as they pushed to a 5-1 lead and held an 8-3 advantage after a Libby Stewart ace. East Hamilton fought back to close the gap to 16-15 and tied the set twice before Inman' skill made it 23-21. Ashlyn Stuman fired an ace over the nylons to give the win to the Bearettes.
The Lady Hurricanes opened the third set with a 6-4 lead and never looked back jumping to a 16-8 cushion. Kills by Georgia Dobson, Camryn Daniels and Saylor Clark along with a pair of aces by Dobson put East Hamilton out front 23-12. Clark gave the Lady 'Canes a 2-1 lead with a final kill to end the set.
East Hamilton took a 5-1 lead in set four and and after breaking a 7-7 tie never looked back as they rolled to a 15-9 advantage and went up 21-11 late in the set. The Bearettes got kills from Kimora Fields and Inman to cut it to 21-13, but the Lady'Canes picked up the last four points with the final blow coming on an ace by Dobson to seal the win.
“We're going to go back to the gym and keep working,but that's been our season. Awe got back to our gym and that's where we get better,” said Tomic.
The Hurricanes and Bearettes will look to battle for the Region 3 title Monday at Cleveland High School.
“We're not done. We fought to live another week so that was our goal. Make it to region and we've just got to work from here,” McElHaney said. “We've got to work on being more consistent and a little more vocal with each other. One mistake happens and we tend to get way too quiet instead of somebody standing up and being vocal and carrying us through it.We'e just got to keep on working on that.”
East Hamilton — Hana Suzuki, Tristin Sutton, Julia Culpepper, Camryn Daniels; Bradley Central — Laney Inman, Kimora Fields, Addison Stuman; Ooltewah — Karley Bruner; MVP — Georgia Dobson, East Hamilton.
(Contact Richard Roberts at email@example.com)