Photo: The Etowah High volleyball team gathers for a photo following the Lady Blue Devils’ victory over Oneonta in the championship match of the Class 4A, Area 10 Tournament on Wednesday, Oct. 13 in Attalla. Pictured, front, from left: Annie Jones, Ellington Jones, Abbi Martin, Anna Jones, Shelby Horton. Middle row, from left: Ayden Black, Lauren Farmer, Merisa Hill, Jacey Huff. Back row, from left: head coach Malory Munroe, Laura Ashley Wood, Kylee Roden, Emma Johnson, Chloe Kelley, Jaleigh Devine, assistant coach Meridith Jones. (Chris McCarthy/Messenger)
By Chris McCarthy, Publisher/Editor
The Etowah High School volleyball program reached uncharted waters last Wednesday (Oct. 13) in Attalla.
The Lady Blue Devils won what is believed to be the school’s first-ever volleyball area championship after sweeping Oneonta, 28-26, 25-19, 25-12 in the title match.
Etowah (17-7) qualified for the North Super Regional Tournament next week at the Von Braun Center in Huntsville. The Lady Blue Devils will open the tournament on Thursday, Oct. 21, at 9 a.m. against Madison County.
Etowah head coach Malory Munroe noted that “everything just clicked” this season for her team.
“These girls have improved so much this year,” she said. “They love the game and they love each other. The summer workouts, the intensity in practice, keeping the girls up, having them stay close, it all paid off today.”
Against Oneonta, tournament MVP Jaleigh Devine had 19 kills, seven digs, five blocks, and two aces; Shelby Horton had 27 assists and two digs; Anna Jones had 12 kills, four digs and three blocks; Abbi Martin had 13 digs; Ellington Jones had 11 digs; and Laura Ashley Wood had six kills, four digs and three blocks.
Joining Devine on the all-tournament team were Martin, Horton, Anna Jones, Annie Jones and Ellington Jones from Etowah; Kylie Wilson, Maggie Roddam, Gracie Berry and Baylor Phillips from Oneonta; and Sera Beth Potter and Whitney Goodwin from Ashville.
Munroe pointed to the five-member senior class of Abbi Martin, Anna Jones, Annie Jones, Elli Jones and Shelby Horton as pivotal to the success of the 2021 Lady Blue Devils.
“Every one of those girls is a great leader, and they show the other girls what I expect. What they’ve done this year will carry on for us.”