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GIRLS VOLLEYBALL: Lake Orion Baptist finally wins first MACS state title

| November 13, 2013 | Comments (0)

 

NOTE: Have photos or video of this event you would like to share with digital daily www.northoaklandsports.com? Email pertinent information to results@northoaklandsports.com or to Senior Editor Dan Stickradt at Dan.Stickradt@northoaklandsports.com

 

FOR MORE VOLLEYBALL COVERAGE: http://northoaklandsports.com/?s=Volleyball&x=0&y=9

 

 

BY DAN STICKRADT

SENIOR EDITOR

dan.stickradt@northoaklandsports.com

Twitter: @LocalSportsFans

 

CLARKSTON — There’s something about the little things in sports that can mean the world. One such little play play meant everything for Lake Orion Baptist’s girls volleyball team Saturday.

Junior McKenna Cameron’s diving dig sailed over the net and hit the floor in open space and kickstarted a long run in Game 3 at Clarkston Springfield Christian.

The Lions, who were tied 1-1 with Kinross Maplewood Baptist at the time, went on to win the third set and eventually the whole match to capture the Michigan Association of Christian Schools Division I state championship with a 3-1 victory over the Black Bears.

Lake Orion Baptist, in just its 12th school year after opening its doors in August of 2002, posted a 25-22, 21-25, 25-21, 25-19 victory over Maplewood Baptist, located 30 miles north of the Mackinac Bridge, for the crown.

The win marked the school’s first state title in any sport and that includes seven varsity sports — girls volleyball, boys soccer, boys basketball, girls basketball, wrestling, baseball and girls soccer. Previously, Lake Orion Baptist had lost in the MACS Division I or Division II state finals 10 times over the previous 11 school years — baseball (five times), boys soccer (twice), girls basketball (one), wrestling (once) and boys basketball (once).

Although the girls volleyball team had reached the state semifinals twice before, it marked the Lions’ first appearance in the title match in that sport and it came under the direction of first-year coach Cole Welby, who played on four state runner-up baseball teams at the school in the mid-2000s.

REASON TO CELEBRATE: Lake Orion Baptist's girls volleyball team  celebrated its first state title in any sport with a 3-1 victory over Kinross Maplewood Baptist in the Michigan Association of Christian Schools Division I state tournament. Donated Photo

REASON TO CELEBRATE: Lake Orion Baptist’s girls volleyball team celebrated its first state title in any sport with a 3-1 victory over Kinross Maplewood Baptist in the Michigan Association of Christian Schools Division I state tournament. Donated Photo

“Our school has come close so many times,” laughed Welby. “We’ve had some good teams over the years, but couldn’t win it all. I personally was part of some of those baseball teams that lost in the finals five years in a row. It was frustrating.”

Not this time.

Behind 6-foot-3 senior hitter Breanne Watterworth and three other seniors, the Lions finished up with their best record in school history at 24-1-0. They snagged the No.1 seed for the tournament and walked off the court hoisting their biggest prize to date.

“It’s a great feeling,” added Welby. “We knew we had an experienced team with four seniors on our team and five girls that started games last year. Most of team was back and we put it together. We had good team chemistry and just played well together.”

Watterworth, who recently committed to NAIA Cedarville College for basketball, finished with a match-high 20 kills in the state finals win. She ended the match with a service point to send the Lions into a frenzy near mid-court.

ON THE ATTACK: Lake Orion Baptist's Breanne Watterworth led the Lions with a match-high 20 kills in the MACS Division I state finals. Donated Photo

ON THE ATTACK: Lake Orion Baptist’s Breanne Watterworth led the Lions with a match-high 20 kills in the MACS Division I state finals. Donated Photo

“When you have a player that tall in a small school that’s also athletic, it can make a big difference,” said Welby. “Most teams we played had a hard time blocking her. She got a lot better from her junior year to senior year and really figured out how to use her size to her advantage and figured out how to really hit the ball. Having her and all the seniors, and the experience that they brought (to the court) was the difference. We’ll miss this group.”

Senior Kelsey McDonald added four aces, while senior Noelle Streetman added seven kills and junior Angie Cone had six kills for the Lions.

“We had a phenomenal season,” said Welby, who credited assistant coach Monika Davis for helping this team come together. “We lost the last game of the regular season to (Burton) Genesee Christian and that was it — just one loss. This was by far the most wins we’ve had in a season. I’m proud of the girls. We only carried nine girls on varsity, so it’s not like we had a really deep bench. We played who we had and didn’t have a lot of injuries. We became a close group and it showed on the court.”

It now shows in the school trophy case. The first state title in school history — in any sport. Bridesmaids no longer.

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FOR MORE VOLLEYBALL COVERAGE: http://northoaklandsports.com/?s=Volleyball&x=0&y=9

 

Have photos or video of this event that you wish to share? E-mail pertinent information to www.northoaklandsports.com Senior Editor Dan Stickradt at dan.stickradt@northoaklandsports.com or e-mail results@northoaklandsports.com.

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Category: Featured Articles, High School, High School (M-Z), Lake Orion Baptist, Lake Orion Shalom Baptist, Most Recently Updated Stories, NOS reference, Prep Wraps, Sport, Top Stories, Uncategorized, Volleyball

About Dan Stickradt: DAN STICKRADT | SENIOR EDITOR dan.stickradt@northoaklandsports.com View author profile.

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