Boys volleyball finishes second in state

No school team has ever captured a state championship. Last night, the boys volleyball got as close as you could get for a second straight season; this, after a season that was supposed to be a rebuilding year following the loss of many seniors from last year’s state runner-up. The team found itself with a second place finish in state once again, but the finish this season was a little different than the previous years.

“Nobody expected us to even be there,” said senior hitter Shane Kozlowski. “Even though we lost the match, it is still a great accomplishment for us to get into that final game.”

The team led most of the first game against the St. Louis University High Bilikens, but the Bilikens were able to edge out with a 27-25 win over the Spartans. In the second match, the team, now demoralized after the close loss in the first match, fell to SLUH 25-10 and allowed the school to capture its sixth state title and the fourth in a row for the Metro Catholic Conference.

According to Kozlowski, the team was just outmatched in the second set.

“[SLUH] had some dominant servers and hitters,” said Kozlowski. “Some of our young guys were not ready to face that kind of competition yet.”

For Kozlowski, the loss last night ended his four years of playing multiple sports in high school, and that fact, along with the loss in the state championship match culminated a mixture of both happiness and sadness.

“High school sports are over for me,” said Kozlowski. “After the game it was a mix of happiness and let down.”

The previous night, when the team knocked out the No. 1-ranked DeSmet in the state semifinals was also a great accomplishment for the team and school.

“We defeated DeSmet after we lost to them earlier in the year. Nobody expected us to be in the position to play DeSmet in the state tournament in the first place,” said Kozlowski.

Three seniors, Shane Kozlowski, Adam Werts and Amar Kahlon played their final high school game. This allows the rest of the team to continue to grow and improve next season after its trip to the state final.