One of the more competitive volleyball seasons in Columbia County came to an end Saturday with Greenbrier and Lakeside both falling in the GHSA AAAA State Sectionals.
Greenbrier, a top seed in State Sectional D, did find success early in the one-day tournament.
Playing at Alpharetta High School, the Lady Wolfpack faced Eagles Landing, a team that handed Greenbrier a loss less than a month ago, in the tournament's opening round. Greenbrier handled Eagles Landing with little trouble as the Lady Wolfpack took a 2-0 sweep, 25-13, 25-10.
"We lost to them at Conyers," Greenbrier senior Jennifer Putnam said. "They struggled today, so it turned out to be really good."
The win put Greenbrier two victories away from the GHSA AAAA Final Four, but that's as close as the team would get.
Facing AAAA No. 3 Marist, the Lady Wolfpack was heavily outmatched and fell in its hardest losses of the season 25-4, 25-9.
"Once they beat us bad in that first game, we couldn't get back in our flow," Greenbrier senior Melissa Lewis said.
The Lady Wolfpack dropped to the loser's bracket, where it was eliminated in two games by Lithia Springs 25-19, 25-15. Marist went on to defeat Lithia Springs and won the State Sectional D Tournament Championship.
The loss ended Greenbrier's season with a 29-11 record. The Lady Wolfpack won the Region 2-AAAA Tournament Championship this season and earned a regular-season region co-championship.
"I'm proud of the team," said Putnam, one of five Greenbrier seniors who played their final high school game Saturday. "We did a lot better this year than last year."
Greenbrier will lose five seniors to graduation for next season's squad and will rely heavily on junior Amanda O'Neal to lead the team.
Lakeside, also fighting for a spot in the GHSA AAAA Final Four on Saturday, dropped their first two games to end their season with a 27-14 record.
The Lady Panthers fell to Dutchtown in their first match of the tournament, then Etowah in the tournament's losers bracket.
"We competed with them in both matches," Lakeside coach Kevin Williams said. "The teams that we played (in the state tournament) could do a little bit more than the teams we played in the regular season. We had to adjust to their style of play."
Lakeside's season ends with a 27-14 overall record. The Lady Panthers finished in a three-way tie for first in the Region 2-AAAA regular-season play and runner-up in the region tournament.
Lakeside also will lose five seniors for next season's squad, but only one senior was a full-time starter.
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