CHARLESTON – The Greenbrier West volleyball team has gotten to know the road to the Charleston Coliseum & Civic Center quite well the past six seasons. They’ll get to draw on their sense of direction again this Wednesday after a thrilling, five set, Region III Championship win over Coalfield Conference rival James Monroe.
The two schools had met four times throughout the 2023 season. James Monroe took a 2-1 victory back on September 9. The Lady Mavericks followed that up with a 3-1 win on September 13. The Lady Cavaliers rebounded for a 2-0 win on September 30 before James Monroe won a hotly contested 3-2 match on October 17.
Fast forward to the Region III section tournaments and it seemed inevitable that the two Class A powers would be on a collision course. Greenbrier West claimed Section II championship with a 3-2 win over Charleston Catholic on Thursday, November 2. Likewise, the Lady Mavericks disposed of River View in a 3-set sweep. All four teams in the sectional finals advanced to the Region III Championship Saturday at the Charleston Catholic Athletic Complex.
Both teams took care of business in the early round. Greenbrier West swept River View 3-0 (25-11, 25-15, 29-27) while James Monroe eliminated Charleston Catholic 3-0 (25-14, 25-16, 25-19). With the wins, both teams advanced to the state tournament that begins this Wednesday. There was still one little matter to settle. Who would win the final Region III Volleyball championship?
With reclassification on the horizon, and a move to four classes impending, the SSAC has eliminated the regional championship format beginning next season.
The two rivals did not disappoint. Battling through four sets, the two squads entered the final set tied at two sets a piece. Perhaps drawing on their past postseason experience, the Lady Cavaliers were able to overcome three match points for an exhilarating regional win in Coach Joe Robertson’s first season at the helm (JM 24-26, GW 25-18, GW 25-19, JM 22-25, GW 21-19).
With seeding determined before the regional championship, one might think the system is a tad flawed. As fate would have it, the Mavericks drew the higher seed for the state tournament. The third seeded Mavericks will face none other than their Region III nemesis, Greenbrier West in the evening session on Wednesday. The Lady Cavaliers drew seed six.
Tickets for the volleyball state tournament can be purchased by calling the Charleston Coliseum & Convention Center at 304-345-1500.
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