After a three-year wait, the Loudonville Christian girls volleyball team gets another shot at winning a state title.
And this time, the Eagles will do so as a Class C team.
Loudonville Christian swept Section X champion Ogdensburg Free Academy in Saturday's Class C regional in Potsdam to earn its second state tournament berth its first coming in 2006 as a Class D school.
It's a huge achievement because we were bumped up to Class C [from Class D] this year, and the girls were determined to get to the state tournament," said Loudonville Christian coach Rosemary Burgher.
The Eagles (21-2) cruised through the first two games of the regional match with scores of 25-14 and 25-12. Ogdensburg Free Academy battled back in the third game, but the Eagles rallied from a four-point deficit for a 25-21 victory to complete the sweep.
"I had scouted them at last year's regional when it was at Shenendehowa because I had a feeling they might be back in the regionals this year," said Burgher. "They were a little bit more difficult than I thought they would be, but we just played our game."
The regional was less tense than last Wednesday's Section II final, when Loudonville Christian fought tooth-and-nail against defending Class C champion Voorheesville. The Eagles wound up winning all three games, but the margin was never more than three points.
"The key to that match was we prepared ourselves for excellent serve receive," said Burgher. "We didn't concentrate on stopping their offense because we knew they only had two good hitters, but we also knew that they had some very good servers."
Voorheesville came close to making it a four-game match after taking a 21-10 lead in the second game. Loudonville Christian turned the game around with a 16-3 run to pull out a 26-24 victory.