By ERIC X. VICCARO
CAPE GIRARDEAU — The Valle Catholic High School volleyball team was oh-so close to winning the Class 2 state championship on Saturday evening.
The Warriors had three chances to win, ahead 14-13, 16-15 and 17-16 in the fifth and deciding set.
However, Christian buckled down as senior setter Addi Lyon delivered an unexpected kill and Valle Catholic committed an attack error — and the Eagles downed the Warriors by scores of 25-22, 27-25, 22-25, 20-25, 19-17 at the Show-Me Center on the Southeast Missouri State University campus.
“Being so close to the win in the fifth set, and then not being able to pull it off — especially after having battled back from two sets down, was absolutely heart-wrenching,” longtime Valle Catholic head coach Nancy Fischer said.
“We put heart and soul into the match and never gave up, even when the odds seemed to weigh heavily against us,” Fischer added.
Regardless, Valle Catholic (30-6-2) produced a memorable season with a district championship, winning the Mineral Area Activities Association small-school division and impressive victories over Miller and Woodland along the postseason trail.
What’s more, this marks the highest-ever finish for Valle Catholic while playing as a Class 2 program.