By MICHAEL LETENDRE
Last Saturday was championship weekend on the scholastic level in multiple sports and that meant all four volleyball classes were in championship finals from East Haven high school.
All eight teams that qualified for the championship matches were worthy competitors but in the end, four titles were won in Class LL, Class L, Class M and Class S levels.
Here’s a quick look at all four matches, starting with the Class L showdown between Farmington and RHAM – two squads Bristol Eastern played throughout the fall scholastic campaign.
Class L Championship – No. 1 Farmington vs. No. 2 RHAM (Hebron)
Fast Line: The Sachems scored a 3-1 victory over the Indians to claim the Class L title.
Set Scores: 25-19, 23-25, 25-18, and 25-23
Final Records: Farmington 24-2 overall; RHAM 25-1
Game Fact: This was the rubber match between the two schools. Farmington won the first match on October 7 (3-0) while RHAM won the second on Nov. 5 (3-0) in the championship showdown of the CCC title bout. The third and deciding match came at the state championship level.
Highlights: It was an excellent, back-and-forth final between both squads and RHAM – losing the second set by just a couple points – won the final two to take the championship…the game was a rematch of last season’s Class L semifinal bout – a contest that RHAM took in five sets (18-25, 25-22, 25-19, 22-25, 15-9). RHAM went on to lose to Platt, 3-1 in the championship…Farmington’s dynamic duo of Caroline Cullen and Ali Troup did extremely well in the losing effort. Cullen slammed down a match-high tying 13 kills while the Indians’ setter dished out 37 assists…Erica Raus also flipped in 13 kills as Farmington’s only two loses of the campaign came against RHAM…Alana Hruska put up 28 kills, Anna Barry nabbed 19 kills, and Allie Welch added 53 assists to pace the champs.
Class LL Championship – No. 3 Stamford vs. No. 4 Ridgefield
Fast Line: Ridgefield led out the gate but ended up falling in the end to Stamford, 3-1
Set Scores: 22-25, 25-20, 25-13, and 25-21
Final Records: Ridgefield 21-4; Stamford 24-2
Game Facts: Stamford’s Andrea O’Connor earned the most outstanding player award with 23 kills and four blocks while Jayla Wilson had 37 assists and Sara Staley had nine kills…Stamford won 19 straight matches to end the campaign with the state LL Championship…For Ridgefield, Caroline Curnal led the charge with 16 kills and 20 digs while Liz Middlebrook threw down 22 kills and added 14 digs…Ridgefield defeated top ranked Greenwich (3-2) to get to the championship tilt.
Class M Championship – No. 3 Seymour 3, No. 1 Torrington 0
Fast Line: In an all-Naugatuck Valley League Final, the Wildcats defeated Raiders in straight sets.
Set Scores: 25-23, 25-23, and 25-21
Final Records: Seymour 24-2; Torrington 25-2.
Game Facts: Faith Thurmond led the charge with 19 kills and three blocked shots – earning the MVP tfor Seymour…Carissa Carbone had nine kills and 12 digs while Jolie Fox led all Torrington players with 12 kills…Even though the contest was a sweep, the Raiders were in each and every set…Torrington had won the previous two matches against Seymour, one coming in the NVL Championship final…For Seymour, Shari Minalga had 24 digs, Gosia Fryc added four kills and two blocks, Samantha Diorio-Torres zipped up seven kills, while Alyssa Cosciello pushed up 18 assists in the winning effort…Also for the Raiders, Jayleen Colon dished out 24 assists and nine digs while Ali DuBois had 17 digs.
Class S Championship – No. 1 Lyman Memorial vs. No. 3 Hale Ray
Fast Line: The top-seeded squad took out third ranked Hale Ray in straight sets, 3-0.
Set Scores: 25-20, 25-20, and 25-18
Final Records: Lyman Memorial 23-1; Hale Ray 20-4.
Game Facts: Andee Bender led Lyman with 15 kills and 13 digs while Abigail Bundy threw in 11 kills as the number one ranked team went through the tournament in a clean sweep…For Ray, Sage Connors blocked a match best six shots and posted five kills while setter Mary Pease etched up 15 assists and 11 digs…It was Lyman’s first state championship in volleyball and Bender was named MVP.