GARLAND — It had been early 500 days since the Fulshear High School volleyball team lost a match against a team in their own classification.
During that time, the Chargers won a 4A state champion and sought another one against Lucas Lovejoy Saturday at the Curtis Culwell Center in the 2020 UIL 5A State Volleyball Championship.
But Lovejoy wouldn’t allow the repeat; the Leopard swept Fulshear, 14-25, 17-25, 22-25.
The Chargers finish the year as state finals with a 25-5 record overall.
The Leopards made sure that Fulshear wasn’t comfortable.
A pair of kills and an ace from Cecily Bramschreiber put Lovejoy up 9-3.
Lovejoy would lead 13-3 before Fulshear served again after Leopards’ service error.
Brielle Warren Broke the run of Lovejoy points at 15-5, but the Leopards started up another run to lead 19-5. Fulshear would close the gap with a kill from Warren and a handful of errors by Lovejoy. But the margin remained double-digits, and the Leopards took the first set 25-14.
The second started similar to the first. Fulshear led 1-0 on a kill by Alexis Dacosta, but Lovejoy followed four straight points. More errors from Fulshear put Lovejoy up 9-3.
Ellie Echter and Dacosta were able to get their rhythm going with kills, but Lovejoy responded with their own to stay in front 14-7.
Warren and Echter scored kills, and Warren also added an ace to set the score at 16-12, still in favor of Lovejoy.
Fulshear could not close the gap, and Bramschreiber closed out the second set with a pair of kills.
Fulshear continued to find their legs in the third set. Warren and Echter each had an early kill that set the score at four all. Dacosta and Echter scored to tie the match back up at 6. Ava Underwood ace put Fulshear up 8-7. It would be the Chargers’ final lead. Three straight errors up Lovejoy up 10-8.
Three straight kills from the Leopards extended the lead to 13-10.
Becca Ferrari recorded an ace to set the score at 18-15 Lovejoy.
The two teams traded kills, but Fulshear couldn’t close the gap.
Echter scored two to help get the margin to 24-22, but a kill from Grace Milliken ended the match.
Fulshear had 20 kills in total, led by Echter with 11, while Warren added 10. Dacosta had seven kills and 13 digs to lead the team. Underwood had 27 assists.
The Chargers had six seniors on the 2020 roster: Ellie Echter, Becca Ferrari, Avery Reid, Jenna Helms, Elizabeth Dobbs, Allyson Struble and Kalee Tollefson.
Story will be updated throughout the day.