MECHANICSBURG, Pa. (WTAJ) — The Crusaders wore the underdog badge proudly Saturday morning, feeding off a wild crowd to beat West Branch 3-0, winning the program’s first volleyball title.
“I have no words for it,” senior Regan Bauer said. “I am just feeling So good and just so proud of my teammates. I’m just over the world excited right now.”
Elk County Catholic advanced to the 1A Championship with a semifinal win over Maplewood, the defending champions, but were still underdogs to the defending state runner up. ECC met West Branch in four sets during regular season play, with the Warriors winning three of them. But when the chips were down, Elk County Catholic (25-20, 25-20, 25-12) played an even and consistent match.
“We knew that they had the pressure on them,” senior Tori Newton said. “They took second last year. They beat us twice this year. So they had the pressure. We were just going to do our thing and it worked out.”
“I don’t think I’ve digested it at all,” added head coach Tricia Bauer. “These girls played so amazing today. They were unbelievable. They just they played unbelievable all year long. They just kept picking it up every game. They just picked it up a little bit more, and a little bit more, and today they played incredible.”
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This was Elk County’s first state volleyball championship since the 1980s, while West Branch was back in it for the second consecutive year. But history repeated itself for the Warriors who, for the second time, fell short in the 1A final.