Sale Creek coach Debbie Hill has the school's last volleyball region championship trophy in her office.
The school won it in 1963.
The Lady Panthers finally won another region title Tuesday when they beat Boyd-Buchanan 3-1 in the Region 3-A title match.
"It's rather historic," Hill said. "We played so many years with East Ridge, Hixson and Notre Dame and battled to come up fourth during East Ridge's power days."
That's 48 years between region championships. Sale Creek junior Erin Hill, the coach's daughter, had a big hand in the newest plaque.
She won tournament MVP honors with 22 kills, 12 assists and five blocks in the 25-17, 25-13, 22-25, 26-24 win over the Lady Buccaneers.
Sale Creek will host Region 4 runner-up Watertown at 7 p.m. Thursday. Boyd-Buchanan will visit Friendship Christian at 8 p.m. EDT.
Sale Creek reached the championship match Tuesday evening by beating Arts & Sciences 3-0. The Lady Bucs advanced by beating Lookout Valley 3-1 and had a 20-minute break before facing the Lady Panthers.
"Yeah, it would have been nice to win region, but we set our goal of getting to state and we can still do that," said Jessica Kirk, a Lady Buc named to the all-tournament team.
The final game began with the Sale Creek student section behind the Boyd-Buchanan bench. An official told a boy in the group that he couldn't use a megaphone.
Coach Hill shouted, "Your mouth is big enough as it is," and urged the section to move behind her bench.
The fourth game was tied 13 times including at 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23 and 24. Sale Creek scored the last three points of the game with Hill getting a kill to go up 25-24 and blocking a hit for the match-deciding point.
"There was a lot of tension," the junior said. "It was like a lot of our matches this season. We were determined that we weren't going to go into a fifth game."
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 ...