Our UA Lions Varsity Volleyball Team was victorious against Rocky River Magnificat, the defending champions, at the State Championship volleyball game this past November. They ended up securing the win over Magnificat, which was hosted at Wright State University’s Nutter Center. Ursuline students were dismissed early to attend the semifinal on Friday and then everyone returned on Saturday to cheer the Lions on to victory in the final! This was Ursuline’s first state win since 2018.
The journey was long to get to the state title, but the Lions persevered. In regionals, they faced MND in the semis – who they quickly rolled over beating them in three sets. In the regional finals, they faced SUA, where they were up 2-1 going into the fourth game. But momentum had shifted and the crowd was feeling the pressure. They were down 11-17 and after a time out, Abby Riehle served 11 straight points that SUA didn’t see coming and the Lions were headed to State. State semis seemed to be an easy win – kills were falling, blocks were there, and the white-out crowd was cheering the Lions onto State Finals. In the finals, the Lions faced the reigning State champs Magnificat who clearly came to play. We lost the first set in a close one, 21-25. The next three sets, while they belonged to the Lions, weren’t close and weren’t easy. The girls had a team-minded attitude, took responsibility for personal errors, and ultimately worked very hard to have their dream of being state champions finally come true.
Team captain, senior Sydney Breissinger, commented on the experience, “It was such an honor for me and Lindsey Green and Katie Gielas to have had the opportunity to win state this year because we all have sisters who were on the winning 2018 team. It feels like we get to be a part of Ursuline’s state-winning volleyball legacy and share it with our sisters!” Sydney wrote an article for the Lions' Roar about her interview with members of UA’s 2002 and 2012 state champion volleyball teams and reflected on how the encouragement of members of these former teams inspired this year’s volleyball team. They definitely spurred them onto success in the state tournament!