Calvary head coach Jennifer Bramlett had one main goal for her weekend trip to San Antonio: win the TAPPS Class 2A state championship.
But the first-year coach also had a pretty big secondary goal, as she wanted to win the tournament without having to call a timeout.
Both goals can be checked off the list, as the Lady Lions swept Boerne Geneva 25-18, 25-19, 25-22 on Saturday at Palo Alto College to claim the state title after sweeping their semifinal match on Friday.
It is the first state championship in a team sport for Calvary.
Calvary (32-7) lost just twice to TAPPS schools this season — both 4A schools.
“It was really an amazing experience,” said Bramlett, who returned to coaching following a one-year hiatus after she started the volleyball program at Guyer. “The girls are amazing at Calvary and it’s such a joy to be a part of this group of parents and players. They did a great job of listening all year. It really made it a great year all around, and to cap it off with a win at the state tournament was amazing.”
The Lady Lions were led by junior middle blocker Madeline Mayer and senior outside hitter Cory Grant, who were named to the all-tournament team along with Peyton Stewart and libero Kelly Crow.
Mayer finished the match with 13 kills, two aces and three blocks, providing a constant nuisance to Geneva throughout the match.
“She just wailed on the ball today,” Bramlett said of Mayer. “She made some smart plays. She was as consistent as ever. She just took over the match early in game 1.
“Defensively, we saw the [Geneva hitter] mouth to their coach, ‘There is nowhere to hit the ball.’ She’s just such a great blocker and she does great things offensively. She was huge for us this year.”
Grant finished with nine kills and seven digs, and the thought of losing the senior made her coach a bit emotional.
“Cory is such a fun kid,” Bramlett said. “She just went out and played an amazing match today. Geneva had an outside hitter who was very good. She’d get up and hit the ball and may or may not get a kill. Between her and Cory, I’d take [Grant] any day. She was such a rock and a go-to player all year. You can’t be a better leader than that.”
Stewart finished the match with 26 assists, 12 digs, four kills and two aces, and Crow had 13 digs and two aces.
Outside hitter Anna Hollingshead added six kills, eight digs and two aces.
“They just played really well,” Bramlett said of her team. “It was a performance you’d want from your team in the state championship.”
ADAM BOEDEKER can be reached at 940-566-6872. His e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org.