Hillsboro?s dream of four consecutive volleyball state championships sank Satur?day in a deep Silver Lake that swallowed every opponent it faced during the Class 3A state tournament in Emporia. The Eagles defeated the Trojans by identical 25-19 scores to win their second consecutive 3A championship.
In both sets, the Trojans dug an early hole. They trailed 1-6 in Set 1 but then managed to tie the score at 13. They trailed 15-16 when a controversial call at the net eventually went against the Trojans and the Eagles responded with a 6-0 run that Hillsboro could not overcome.
In Set 2, the Trojans were down 1-4, but this time Hillsboro rallied and took the lead at 7-6 on back-to-back service aces by Alex Ratzlaff. Hillsboro maintained the lead until Silver tied the score at 18 and then outscored the Trojans 7-1 down the stretch.
With its 5-0 tournament record –without losing a single set — Silver Lake verified its No. 1 ranking in 3A by the Kansas Volleyball Associa?tion despite a 35-9 record.
The Trojans made it to the championship game by defeating Douglass, the No. 1 seed in the tournament based on won-loss record, in three sets, 25-17, 13-25, 25-17. Sandwiched between impressive performances in sets 1 and 3, the Trojans fell behind 0-6 in Set 2 and simply could not pull themselves out of their funk.
With their 3-2 overall tournament record, the Trojans finished another outstanding season with a 39-5 record and the state-runnerup trophy.