For the fifth consecutive year, the Mount Carmel Cubs are heading to the state championship.
Ellie Holzman had 19 kills and Madelyn Keene finished with 12 blocks, helping lead the top-seeded Cubs to a sweep of fourth-seeded St. Joseph's by scores of 25-19, 25-12, 25-10 to earn them a shot at another title.
Chapelle beat Dutchtown 3-0 to set up a final against the Cubs at 7 p.m. Saturday.
“I feel like we came out really strong and excited today,” Keene said. “We really just played as a team and got it done.”
Mount Carmel has won four consecutive state championships and will be tough to beat if it can take the momentum built from Friday.
The first set was a seesaw battle throughout before the Cubs pulled ahead 25-19. The other sets saw the Redskippers attack slow down. The Cubs scored 13 consecutive points in the third set on their way to the win. Coach April Hagadone said the win was a team effort.
“This team wins, and what we always talk about is how it’s a team effort,” she said. “This team is the ultimate champion. It’s not just one person and when everyone contributes. its fun to play and watch and I can’t wait for (Saturday).”
CHAPELLE 3, DUTCHTOWN 1: It’s been a long time coming for the Chapelle Chipmunks, but they have finally made it back to a final.
Hailey Melerine had 16 kills and two aces, and Hannah Volpi added 33 assists as the second-ranked Chipmunks defeated the third-seeded Dutchtown Griffins 21-25, 25-20, 25-22, 25-9 to advance to their first state championship game in 23 years.
“This feels absolutely amazing,” said Melerine. “We haven’t been to the state championship since 1995. I can’t even describe; it it’s just so amazing.”
Chappelle overcame losing the first set and fought through narrow wins before a dominating win in the final game to get to where they have been striving for this year.
“This means everything,” Volpi said. “This is everything we’ve been working for all season long. This game just gave us all the confidence in the world. We’ve shown everything we can do day in and day out. We’ve played as a team all season and in that game.”
Chappelle is 0-3 against Mount Carmel this season. Chipmunks coach Anne Marie Stelly said that experience would help her team in the final.
“We’ve played them three times already this season, and last time we played impeccable,” she said. “We’re very excited to play. We’ve watched them play, we know where their weaknesses are and I’m looking forward to the chance to play them.”