ELHS volleyball hopes to repeat as state champs

Jimmy Skaaland, Staff Writer

 

The East Lake varsity volleyball team came into this season with high expectations after last year’s state championship.  As always there were many doubters who said without Lauran Eschenroeder in the middle they would be unable to keep up their high paced offense from last year.  The Eagles also faced a challenge not knowing who their coach would be after the departure of Terry Small,  but long time softball coach Mike Estes stepped up to fill the void.  One thing going in their favor is that they returned All-County performers on defense junior Brooke Burkett, at setter senior Rachel Reed and at the net seniors Brittany Estes, Jackie Wegner and Brianna McComeskey.

                The Eagles are now 17-1, ranked 5th in the state, and two games into their defending state championship run.  They started off their playoff run last Tuesday night giving head coach Mr. Estes the thing he wanted most on his birthday, a district title.  They followed it up by crushing rival Palm Harbor University in three games on Thursday night.  “From the beginning we really set the tempo for the game and controlled it like we should throughout,” said senior Brittany Estes.

                They are only five games from their goal of the state championship and are poised to repeat. “Hopefully now that we are in the play offs, more students will come to the games to show support for us to repeat our State Championship,” said senior Rachel Reed.  The Eagles will be playing next this Wednesday night here at East Lake, the game will be starting at 7.