LAWRENCEVILLE - The Eastside volleyball team earned a trip to the Class AAA state playoffs with a third-place finish in the Area 8-AAAA tournament Saturday at Archer High School.
The Lady Eagles (21-25) will face Woodland-Henry in the first round of the tournament at 11 a.m. Saturday in Stockbridge.
"I was proud of the way our girls played overall during the tournament," Eastside coach Angie Lewis said. "Although we still had some elementary mistakes at times, the girls stepped up and performed at crucial points during the matches against Jackson (County) and Morgan (County) to pull out the wins in two games."
Eastside opened the tournament with a 25-12, 25-18 decision over Archer. Katie Johnston had five kills, four aces and four digs to lead the Lady Eagles. Sydney Mumpower had three aces and two kills. Tiffany Lo finished with six assists.
The Lady Eagles fell in their next match 25-20, 25-21 to Hart County. Johnston tallied six kills and three aces, while Lo chipped in eight assists.
Facing elimination, Eastside bounced back to beat Jackson County and Morgan County to secure a trip to the state tournament.
Against Jackson County, the Lady Eagles prevailed 26-24, 25-18 to secure their state playoff berth. Lo had a fine match, finishing with 18 assists, seven digs and four aces. Johnston added a team-high eight kills and three aces, while Chelsea Cooper chipped in three kills and one block.
Eastside earned the No. 3 seed with a 25-16, 26-24 decision over Morgan County. Antonia Mullins paced the Lady Eagles with four digs, two blocks and two tips. Cooper also tallied a team-high five kills. Lo added seven digs and six assists, while Naomi Wills finished with seven digs, three assists and two aces.
The Lady Eagles' area title chances were squashed by a 25-19, 25-10 loss to Hart County, Johnston had five kills and Mumpower added three. Lo chalked up nine assists.
Johnston and Wills were named to the all-area 8-AAA volleyball team.
"We only had two all-area (8-AAA) players, Katie Johnston and Naomi Willis, because of our placing," Lewis said. "But Antonia Mullins, Chelsea Cooper and Sydney Mumpower did a great job for us at the net, while Tiffani Hodges and Kelsy Gerks played the back row extremely well."
Alcovy and Newton were both eliminated early in their area tournaments.
The Lady Tigers (18-17) were knocked out of the Area 4-AAAA tournament Saturday with a loss to Forest Park.
The Lady Rams were eliminated in Area 2-AAAAA with a loss to Greenbrier.
Jeff Gillespie can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.