WEB EXCLUSIVE: Going Back for More-Lovejoy advances to state after beating Frisco in regional finals
RICHARDSON – The Lovejoy volleyball team may be new to Class 4A, but they are up to their old tricks.
The Lady Leopards, four-time reigning Class 3A State Champions, advanced to the Class 4A State Tournament (Thursday and Saturday at the Curtis Culwell Center in Garland) Saturday afternoon by sweeping Frisco (25-15, 25-20, 25-13).
“To be going back to state … this is such a great feeling,” said Ebony Nwanebu, Lovejoy senior, who had 13 kills in the final set alone and 22 for the match.
Lovejoy was able to consistently put up big runs in the win, closing Game 1 with a 9-2 surge and ending Game 3 on a 14-4 spurt.Those scores ended Frisco's Cinderella run to the regional finals.
“Nobody really expected this; everyone overlooked us,” said Janie Litchford, Frisco head coach. “But I knew; I knew when we took the court for two-a-days that we had the talent and that if we set our mind to it, we could make a run.”
Lovejoy's state semifinal match will be Thursday evening.
“I know a lot of people expected us to get to this point, but just look around, upsets happen,” said Ryan Mitchell, Lovejoy head coach. “We were able to make it through though and I have an overwhelming sense of pride in this team right now.”