Saturday was a long day of volleyball at the Istrouma High gym, and at 9:30 p.m. the Lakeshore Titans scored their final point in a 25-10, 25-21 win over Broadmoor for the Istrouma Slammin’ Classic championship.
Lakeshore (9-7) knocked off two Baton Rouge teams, Belaire in the quarterfinals and Woodlawn in the semifinals, while Broadmoor eased by White Castle in the quarterfinals and came from behind in the final set to defeat Walker 25-23, 18-25 and 15-13 in a three-set semifinal.
In the final, both teams showed signs of a long day of competition, mishandling more balls and making more errors than normal. In the first set of the final, Lakeshore built a 10-1 lead, running off 10 points in a row with the benefit of only two kills. The other points came on shots the Lady Bucs mishandled, hit wide or knocked into the net.
“Both teams were tired, so that’s no excuse,” Broadmoor coach Maria Gonzalez said. “We played six matches today, and they played six matches today. The difference in the match is that they played better than we did, and they were a better team tonight. We just didn’t have a good offensive night.
“Congratulations to Lakeshore. They deserved it.”
Broadmoor (19-5) never recovered from the opening deficit that grew to 18-4 later in the set. From that point the Titans had two kills apiece from Madison Grapp and Brooke Blackshear as they cruised to the first-set win.
Lakeshore coach Kacie Mule had an explanation for her team’s fast start.
“We played Broadmoor earlier in a regular-season game and we lost,” she said. “The girls wanted to come out and get off to a good start.
“The difference tonight was that we played as a team, and we played with an aggressive consistency.”
Broadmoor came back in the second set to take a 5-3 lead behind the front line play of Breona Taylor, but the Titans ran off seven unanswered points with Haley Stiebing serving, and the Bucs faced a five-point deficit.
They never got closer than three until the final points of the match when Taylor again went on a tear, recording three straight kills to narrow the margin to 23-21.
“Breona had a great game tonight. She definitely did her part,” Gonzalez said.
Blackshear then hit a kill to give the Titans game point, and Broadmoor mishandled a final ball to end the set.
Both teams were in a tournament final for the first time. It is the second year of varsity competition for Lakeshore.
Istrouma coach and tournament director Cynthia Montgomery said the tournament went well and that the 21 teams this year were spiced by entries from across south Louisiana.
“The thing I liked about our tournament was the variety. We had Lakeshore, Chalmette, Livonia and Carencro here for the first time, and the others had been here before. We had teams from all over,” she said.