There will be a new Class 2A state volleyball champion Saturday and in the process of certifying that fact, Schulenburg exorcised a thorn that had long held back its volleyball program.
Brock, the defending 2A title holder from a year ago, was shown the UIL state tournament exit door, thanks to a near flawless 25-20, 25-11, 25-11 state semifinal win by the Shorthorns at Curtis Culwell Center.
Schulenburg (42-3) will face Bushland (37-5) at 11:30 a.m. Saturday in the state final back at the Culwell Center.
The win also represented the first time Schulenburg has been able to put away Brock in a significant way.
“They’ve knocked us out the last three years and none more disappointing than last season,” Schulenburg coach Donald Zapalac said. “I don’t want to use the word revenge, but Brock got our full attention today.”
It wasn’t without some early drama, though.
Brock (36-9) announced its presence in royal fashion, storming back from an early 15-12 deficit to take an 18-16 lead.
That led Zapalac to call timeout and set the record straight for his team.
Although no one wanted to divulge exactly what was said during the timeout, it proved a quality stoppage of play as the Shorthorns had a 9-2 rally to take control of the match for good.
“That’s when they really got into their system and we just got outplayed there at the end of the first set,” Brock coach Keith Guyon said. “We ended up with one-on-one matchups after that and when you have some players as good as they are, you’re not going to win much going one-one-one.”
Sarah Walker had 14 kills and Kelsie Fietsam 11 to lead Schulenburg. Setter Shannon Mikesky had 36 assists, and Guyon cited her play as a catalyst to the ’Horns’ offense.
“She really started to give them options and put the ball in places that we were not,” he said.
Bailey Snow had 13 kills for Brock as well as 12 digs.
Schulenburg was strong at the net, recording a hitting percentage of .315 compared with .054 for Brock.