Senior Courtney Lane summed up the four-year journey of the Valor Christian girls volleyball program after the Eagles wrapped up the state championship with a 3-1 win over top-seeded Chaparral on Nov. 10 at the Denver Coliseum.
It was Valor's first state volleyball championship in the school's first season of 5A competition after a runner-up and final four appearances the past two seasons in Class 4A.
“Oh my gosh, it feels so good,” Lane said. “My freshman year I was on varsity and we didn't even make it to the state tournament. My sophomore year we got third at state, junior year we got second at state, and this year finally winning.
“It feels so good. I am actually crying and I'm not even sad. I'm just so happy especially coming up to 5A. We lost last year to Lewis-Palmer in the finals and that was kind of bittersweet because they were all my friends. We had never seen Chap all season and we knew we were probably going to meet in the state finals. We knew we could win.”
Valor, seeded third, finished the season with a 27-2 record but had to work hard in the semifinals to down seventh-seeded Eaglecrest, 3-2.
The Eagles fought off elimination in the fourth and fifth but finally prevailed 15-25,25-18, 19-25, 25-21 and 15-10 as junior Anna Davis delivered three important kills down the stretch in the fifth set.
“Yeah, the semifinal win got us ready,” said Valor coach Kaitlyn Hastings. “Our girls have shown when we get in tight spots they have the grit to work it out, trust each other and be able to bounce back. This championship feels awesome. I'm so excited for these girls. It's awesome to see this group win it. They have earned it.”
Lane sparked the Eagles with 15 kills in the title match, but Chaparral rallied in the fourth until a kill by Lane on a Chaparral set point tied the set at 25. A block by Davis and the decisive point off a hit by Lily Thomason set off Valor's victory celebrations.
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