As expected, the Gordon Lee Lady Trojans had little trouble in advancing to the second round of the Class AA/A Public School state tournament as they overwhelmed visiting Temple in a best-of-five match Wednesday afternoon in Chickamauga.
The Area 7 champions dominated nearly from start to finish. They rolled to a 25-4 win in the opening set and led 11-8 in the second set before closing it out on a 14-3 run to score a 25-14 victory.
The Lady Tigers, the No. 4 seed from Area 6, tried to hang in with heavily-favored Gordon Lee in the third set, trailing by just four points (10-6) in the early stages. However, a 9-3 run would erase any hopes of a fourth set as Gordon Lee got a kill by Riley Shirley and a perfectly-placed shot by Emoree Rogers to end the final set, 25-14.
Rogers had six kills, six assists and seven aces in the match. Sam Cramer picked up 13 assists to go with seven aces and two kills. Brooklyn Hudson had seven kills and three digs, while Annie McDaniel helped anchor the defense with eight digs.
Up next for Gordon Lee (34-11) is a date against Lovett, the No. 2 seed from Area 5, who scored a 3-0 victory at Lake Oconee Academy on Wednesday. LOA was the No. 3 seed from Area 8.
Lovett (20-12), a private school in Atlanta who won the Class AA state title in 2012, finished second in Area 5 to another Atlanta-area private school in Pace Academy. Pace won the past three state titles in Class AAA before being moved into the AA/A Public School division for volleyball, along with Lovett, during the most recent reclassification cycle.
"It is what it is," said Gordon Lee head coach Adam Crowley about having to face a private school team in a public school state tournament. "We've scouted them. We've watched them and we know a little bit about what they're going to do. We just have to show up and be ready to play.
"We've played a bunch of tournaments this year, deliberately to play against tough teams and we'll be facing another tough team on Saturday. We just have to be ready to go."
The start time for the match had not been determined as of press time.