Back to back section champions. That’s the title Turlock Christian High now claims after Thursday’s defeat of Stone Ridge Christian High, 3-1 (25-23, 17-25, 25-6, 25-17), in the Division VI Sac-Joaquin Section final match at UC Davis.
After cruising through the first two rounds of post-season play, the Eagles escaped with a narrow first-game win before being stunned in the second game by the Knights. Unfortunately for Stone Ridge, TC was revived in the third and fourth games as its girls took the D6 title by force.
“It feels amazing. I’m just so glad we could do it for our school and for our team. We’re just so glad we all worked together in this game and finish it,” Senior Tiffany Franco said.
“We’re so blessed to be able to win two in a row,” Senior Sarah Amaral said.
Head coach Ken Wynne, in only his second year at the helm for the Eagles, had a different take on the victory.
“Rewarding, and refreshing, and exhausting,” Wynne said of the season finale with a laugh.
Though they lost, the second game proved to be the turning point in the match for the Eagles as it spurred their most dominating performance of the night in the third game. Quashing frustration and miscommunication, TC allowed only six points after its let down.
“After the first set, our girls got a little overconfident, and they weren’t expecting this kind of game. But I was,” Wynne said. “I reminded them to play like champions, because they’re the returning champions, and to play confident but not cocky,”
“It took us just coming together and just looking at each other and saying, ‘we’re better than this, we can work harder than this, and we know that if we put all of our effort and work as a team we can get it done,” Amaral said.
Franco and Amaral ended their high school careers with stellar performances, notching 38 assists and 23 kills, respectively.
While the pair, along with five fellow seniors, were key components to the last two championship seasons, TC is confident in its ability to recreate their recent success next year.
“We got eight returners coming back next year, so I’m looking to have a good team,” Wynne said. “If can continue on with what we have with those 8, hopefully we’ll be back here again next year.”