By MICHAEL ALEXANDER, Staff Photographer | Published November 17, 2016
ROSWELL— In the Oct. 29 Class AAAA state volleyball finals at Marietta High School, Blessed Trinity High School defeated College Park’s Woodward Academy in three straight sets (25-22, 29-27 and 25-22) to earn its third straight state championship.
Senior Morgan Stalcup led the team with nine kills, and her junior teammates Olivia Dukat and Alyssa Kuroski had eight apiece. Dukat also led the team with five blocks. Junior Brenna Mako was the team’s assist leader with 25. Sophomore Anna MacDonald led the team with eight digs, a category she led as a freshman in the 2015 state finals.
Mako, a first-year player who relocated to the area from Ohio in the summer, ended up leading all players in the state in assists with 1,266.
“I never thought about the stats when I played this season,” said Mako. “I wanted to get to know my team and have fun doing it. As the season went on, I wanted nothing more than for the entire team to win together. I guess the attitude I had in doing this led me to play harder and accomplish such a feat.”
Six-foot-4-inch Stalcup, the team’s middle and right side hitter, finished second in the state with 190 blocks for the season and ended her high school career as third all-time in state history for blocks.
“Winning three consecutive state championships is really the most ideal way I could end a fantastic high school experience,” said Stalcup. “I never would have been able to participate in these championships without the support of my teammates and coaches. We all buy into the idea that we strive to make one another better instead of individual stardom. It takes 12 girls, all working at their fullest potential, to be as successful as we have been in the last three years.”
“This was such a talented group of players who worked hard all season to be better each day than they were the day before,” head coach Paul Stevens said. “But more than talent, they had terrific chemistry, and that chemistry is what made this a special season and a special championship.”
The team finished the season with an overall record of 55-9, making it the third most wins in a season since the program began in 2002.