Georgia Bulletin

The Newspaper of the Catholic Archdiocese of Atlanta


Pinecrest Paladins Capture State Volleyball Title

By MICHAEL ALEXANDER, Staff Photographer | Published November 12, 2009

The Lady Paladins of Pinecrest Academy captured the 2009 Georgia Independent School Association (GISA) state varsity volleyball title in Monroe Oct. 24. It was the school’s second trip to the state finals, but their first state championship.

On their way to the state finals, Pinecrest won the region title with a perfect record of 12-0. After qualifying for the Sweet Sixteen, they swept Frederica Academy of St. Simons Island, 25-6, 25-5 and 25-1, in the first round of play Oct. 23. Once they advanced to the Elite Eight, they defeated Harvester Christian Academy of Douglasville 25-16, 25-21, 26-24. In the Final Four match, Oct. 24, Pinecrest beat Augusta Preparatory Day School of Martinez 25-21, 27-25, 25-27, 25-21.

In the championship match Pinecrest faced off against Calvary Christian School of Columbus, a team that entered the match with three previous regular season losses from September—two to Pinecrest and one to Augusta Preparatory Day School. In the final head-to-head contest that fifth-year Pinecrest Academy coach Amy Camacho described as one that “embodied the thrill of the sport as both sides ferociously pounded the ball at their opponents,” Pinecrest triumphed 20-25, 25-18, 28-26, 25-22. Junior outside hitter Haley Ojeda and senior outside hitter and co-captain Alex Caliban led the team with 16 and 10 kills, respectively. Senior co-captain and setter/middle blocker Bridget Camacho finished with 25 assists. On defense Ojeda and junior middle blocker Maggie Doxtader had five blocks each.

Coach Camacho praised her players for their ability to stay focused and play their game, especially during the match’s most competitive moments. Coach Camacho added, “We focused on our processes, making transitions, playing smart, running a faster offense and just never giving up. We knew we could beat Calvary, but it was going to be won by the team who fearlessly challenged themselves to give their all. This win was truly sweet!”

Pinecrest’s Bridget Camacho, Caliban, Ojeda, setter and right side hitter Margaret Cassandra, right side hitter Kate Stecki and libero Nicole Camacho were named as 2009 GISA All-Region Players. Bridget and Nicole Camacho, Caliban and Ojeda were also named as 2009 GISA All-State Players. The Lady Paladins finished the season with a match record of 29-1 and a set record of 81-4.