The Magnolia Blue Eagle volleyball team returned to the state volleyball tournament after a few years absence and would win its first match against Sherman, but was ousted by the Williamstown Yellowjackets for a third place finish in this years Class-A state volleyball tournament in Charleston over the weekend.
The 'Jackets just got by the Eagles 25-19 in the opening set, before blowing them away in the second set, 25-8. In the third set Magnolia stayed right with Williamstown before dropping the third set, 25-22.
Ashley Moore was the lone double-digit scorer with 10 points for Magnolia, while Mallory Chapman ended the match with nine points, seven kills, five blocks, and 11 digs, that earned her a place on the All-Tournament Team at the conclusion of the tournament.
Emily Clegg and Hillary Feldmeier each recorded eight markers, while Lauren Cline tallied seven points and made 16 assists. In addition, Erinn Clegg scored six points, while Kiera Standiford and Audrey Gibb teamed for 10 kills. Standiford also added two blocks.
"The girls played hard and it was our goal at the beginning of the season to be in the state tournament at years end. We accomplished that and I'm very pleased on how our girls played," said long time Magnolia Head Coach Pam Chapman. "We have the bulk of our team back next season and it should be our goal next year to do even better next season."
But, before they even got to the semi-final they had to meet up with the Sherman Tide in the opener. After a shaky start, where they found themselves down 8-0 to open the first set. The Eagle's nerves went away and they could rely on their skill to propel them to a come-from-behind 25-23 victory in the opening set.
From this point on it was all Magnolia, as the Blue Eagle netters defeated the Tide 25-17 in the final two sets.
Chapman paced the Eagle attack with 17 points, five aces, 13 kills, 15 digs, and blocked four Sherman shots, while Cline added 14 points, one ace, and made 35 assists. Emily Clegg recorded 15 points, that also included a service ace, while Feldmeier delivered 10 points, one ace, and five digs. Erinn Clegg served up six points, with one service ace, while Gibb responded with six kills and one block, and Katie Blatt landed four kills and one block.
The Blue Eagles finished the season with a respectable 20-12-1 record and will lose only senior Hillary Feldmeier. "Hillary was our most improved player this season. She worked very hard on her game and was a key player for us all season, and she will be missed," said Coach Chapman.
"The girls got a taste of the state tournament and it will be a goal of ours next season to get back and finish the season in a different setting. The girls want this and as a team they will go to team camps and work the summer to their advantage."