St. Joe’s hosted Southside Christian in the Volleyball Upper-State Championship, Tuesday, Nov. 4, 2014
With its passing game working well, St. Joseph’s Catholic School cruised to a 3-0 win over Southside Christian School Tuesday night to reach the Class A volleyball state championship game.
The Knights (40-3) will go for a fourth straight state title at 11 a.m. Saturday at White Knoll High School in Lexington. They will play either Charleston Charter or East Clarendon.
St. Joseph’s focused in practice on improving its passing game since the quarterfinals.
“All we have to do is pass a good ball to our setter, and then we have enough weapons that we can put the ball down,” Knights coach Jan Carino said. “When we don’t pass well, we can’t get the ball to our weapons.”
Each of the first two games began with the teams trading points. The Knights strung together several runs in game one to take a 25-10 win. In game two, St. Joseph’s pulled away from a 9-9 tie for a 25-17 win.
Sabres coach Priscilla Legrand said it was the best she’d seen her team play against St. Joseph’s.
“One of the things that hurt us was we couldn’t control the things we could control,” she said. “We didn’t force them to play hard.”
The Knights jumped to an early 7-2 lead in game three, which they extended to 14-5. St. Joseph’s swept the match with a 25-12 win.
A St. Joseph’s victory Saturday would not only be the school’s fourth title in a row, it also would be the sixth consecutive year that a Greenville school has won the Class A championship. Southside Christian won in 2009 and 2010 before the Knights began their streak.
“Fourth time to go to the state championship, but it’s just as exciting as the first,” Carino said.
Branchville, the school the Knights defeated each of the past three years, lost in the quarterfinals, so the teams playing in the championship game Saturday will be unfamiliar to each other. That’sOK with Carino.
“I’d actually rather play a team that has not seen us because they don’t know how to prepare for what we have,” she said.