FORT MYERS, FL ‒ The Santa Fe High School Lady Raider Volleyball team has won its first state championship in the history of the school. The Raiders claimed the title Wednesday afternoon defeating Calvary Christian Academy, Fort Lauderdale, (25-16, 25-17, 25-14) in three straight sets at the Suncoast Credit Union Arena in Fort Myers, Florida. Santa Fe was ranked Number 4 in the nation heading into the championship game and didn’t drop a single set during the state playoff run.
The team was led by Co-Captains Jalyn Stout and Rylie Tam. Rounding out the championship team are Miya Thomas, Anisa Dorlouis, Sarah Falck, Faith Marquis, Joselynn Sanjurjo, Cameron Bendel, Riley Steen, Olivia Beavers, Gracie Hardacre, Alyssa Moneypenny, and Kimberly Daniels. The Lady Raiders coaching staff is led by Coach Eric Marshall with Assistant Coaches Nicole Stout and Kayla Hess.
The third time was a charm for Santa Fe as this was the third time in the last four years that the Raiders reached the state championship match.
“This is so huge not only the girls, but for the school and the entire community,” said Santa Fe High School Athletic Director Michele Faulk. “This team works so hard and they are great girls. I’m so proud as the athletic director, but being the former volleyball coach and watching Eric Marshall, a raider alumnus, get these girls here and to win it all, is just so special.”
Reflecting on the win, Marshall said, “First one in Santa Fe history—that’s hard to say out loud. That’s hard to say with all the great teams Santa Fe has had over the years.” Marshall should know, as a high school student at Santa Fe High School, he was a ball boy for the Santa Fe Lady Raider Volleyball team.
“We have incredible support from the administration, Dr. Tim Wright and Athletic Director Michele Faulk,” added Marshall.
Over 50 “Rowdy Raiders” witnessed the historic win as they rode the spirit bus, coordinated by Kelly Hodsdon, to the championship game.
Plans are underway for a celebration of the championship win with details to be announced later.
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