Hancock Day School Spikes Two out of Three SPAL Volleyball Championships - St. James Bumps One

By Special to the Prep Sports Report | October 27, 2021

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Monday night saw the culmination of a very exciting Savannah Parochial Athletic League (SPAL) volleyball season! The night started with two semifinal games in the 6th-grade division. These two games featured two undefeated teams in St. James School and Hancock Day School that continued to do what they did all season and made the quick work of Savannah Country Day and Blessed Sacrament. 

Then things started to heat up as these two titans clashed to see who would get the championship and who would get their first loss of the season. The first set was back and forth, with each team taking advantage of good serve and receive play, and the Chargers of St. James was able to outlast the Eagles of Hancock 25 - 21. The Eagles came out quick in the second set, but the dominant serve of the Chargers Avery Ritzert was too much to overcome, giving the Eagles their first loss and the Championship Trophy to St. James! 

6th Grade Champions St. James

Immediately following the 6th Grade Championship, the 7th Grade finalist took the floor, showcasing a rematch between the Calvary Cavaliers and the only team to beat them all season, the undefeated Hancock Eagles! The first set was never in doubt as the Eagles rode excellent serves from Ford Dewitt and EK Harvin to win 25 – 18. 

In the second set, the Cavaliers came out on fire. They took the early lead, yet just when it looked like the Cavs would send this match to a third and decisive set at 23-14, the Eagles began to rally with some big hits from Amelia Phillips and Adair Simmons and dominate serves from Ford Dewitt to tie it at 23 apiece. These two powerhouse teams began to trade blows until Adair Simmons decided enough was enough and put an ace on the right sideline to take the 30 -28 set victory and bring the championship home to Hancock.

7th Grade Champions Hancock Day School

The primetime 8th-grade match-up followed, bringing the back-to-back undefeated champs from Hancock to the floor to face off against a solid Savannah Christian Squad that took them to 3 sets earlier in the season. The action was fast and furious, with long rallies and a fantastic play by both teams. The Eagles fought back from an early deficit with great serves from Evangeline Rominger, Emily Dyches, and Howell Carter to secure the first set victory 25 - 23. The second set was nothing short of a title match fight, with both teams throwing their best punches early. But the Eagles libero Palmer Thomas then decided that nothing touched the floor, finishing the match with countless digs putting the ball perfectly in the hands of the Eagles setter Boots Buckler. They then gave it to Mills Smith or Maggie Allen to finish things off, winning the second set 25 -15. This gave the Eagles the three-peat championship, and was the first team in Hancock Day School history to win three championships!

8th Grade Champions Hancock Day School

It was a great night for SPAL volleyball and showed how much the sport has grown in the Savannah area. We cannot wait to see these 8th graders rise through high school volleyball ranks and see these underclassmen continue to make SPAL some of the best prep volleyball in Savannah.

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The "Coach" Karl DeMasi has been teaching and coaching for the past 35 years on all levels of academia and athletics. One of his hobbies has been writing, announcing and talking about sports. DeMasi has been involved in the Savannah Area sports scene since 1995, and he created the high school magazine "The Prep Sports Report" in 2000. In 2010, the "Coach" started broadcasting The Karl DeMasi Sports Report. He's still going strong, broadcasting on Facebook live and Twitter live every Saturday morning. You gotta love it!

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