The East Hamilton volleyball team is headed where no other set of Lady Hurricanes has gone before -- a state tournament.
East Hamilton beat Notre Dame 3-1 in a Class AA state sectional Thursday night.
Senior hitter Elizabeth Behrend led the attack for the Lady 'Canes, who are in their third year of varsity competition.
"Everything seems to be coming along, because your first year there are freshmen and sophomores playing varsity," coach Kristy Lenoir said. "Now they're juniors and seniors with experience and leading the way."
The Lady 'Canes (32-10) will begin their double-elimination state tournament Wednesday in Murfreesboro.
"This is big for the seniors who started the program," Lenoir said. "It's also big for the first-year kids playing because they're learning hard work pays off, and that's huge for them."
East Hamilton won the first two games 25-20 and 26-24 before the Lady Irish won 29-27 with Catie Ward closing that game with an ace.
The Lady 'Canes regrouped and blew away the Irish 25-15 in the deciding fourth match, punctuated by a block from Allison Walden to set up match point.
"It's sad that our season ended," said Notre Dame coach Tyler Baldonado, whose team wound up 22-20. "They stepped up, we didn't, and we ran out of points."
And a Lady 'Canes team is running to the state tournament for the first time ever.
David Uchiyama is a sports writer at the Chattanooga Times Free Press who began his tenure here in May 2001. His primary beats are UTC athletics — specifically men’s basketball and athletic department administration — and golf, which includes coverage from the PGA Tour to youth events. He also covers other high school sports, outdoor adventures, and contributes to other sections of the newspaper when necessary. David grew up in Salinas, Calif., and began working ...